Over half-a-dozen schools of Prayagraj have granted a three-month fee exemption to students, even as arguments and counter-arguments continue to fly elsewhere on whether or not to charge fees for online classes. The fee exemption has been granted for the months of April, May and June.
The move comes at a time when desperate parents are appealing to the state government and even striving for court intervention in times when salaries have been cut and jobs lost.
These schools, located mostly in rural areas, besides granting the fee exemptions to students, are using up their savings to pay salaries to teachers and staff and meet other running expenses, like power bills.
The schools which have taken the initiative are New Scholars Academy at Chatnagh Road in Jhunsi, GS Academy English-Medium school at Karchana, Prakash Public School and Prakash Girls’ Intermediate College at Deeha in Karchana, LB Singh Intermediate College at Mungari in Karchana, Pt RS Vidyashram Intermediate College at Marufpur Anapur in Lalgopalganj, Tara Rashid Sherwani Girls Intermediate college in Kurali Anapur in Lalgopalganj and Shankar Lal Public School in Jasra among others.
Pt RS Vidyashram Intermediate College, in Marufpur Anapur, in Lalgopalganj, offers education to around 450 students enrolled from Classes I to VIII and another 400 in Classes IX to XII. Manager Satyavrat Mishra said that the school charges around Rs 300 per month from students of Classes I to VIII and around Rs 400 per month from students in Classes IX to XII.
“This amounts to a fee collection of around 8.85 lakh in three months from 850 students which the school management has decided to exempt in light of the coronavirus impact,” he added.
Tara Rashid Sherwani Girls Intermediate College manager Khurshid Alam said that the school management has also decided not to collect the fee of three months from all 700 students enrolled in the institution. “Monthly fee collection here amounts to around Rs 1.30 lakh and the school will be forgoing around Rs 4 lakh as fee in three months,” he added.
New Scholars Academy at Chatnagh Road in Jhunsi has also granted exemptions to students for April, May and June 2020. Affiliated to UP Basic Education Board to impart education till Class 8, the decision would directly benefit 150 students. “In light of Covid-19 outbreak and its effect, the school has decided not to collect any fee for three months,” confirmed school manager Manoj Upadhyay.
No doubt the parents are happy. “My two children study in GS Academy English-Medium School at Karchana. The school has informed that no fee will be charged for April, May and June and this has come as a major relief to parents like me,” said Sunil Kumar, a resident of Bhadeva village, in Karchana.