14 Jan,19

Soon, a bill to regulate pre-primary schools: Minister Vinod Tawde

By: Shiv Pratap Singh

MUMBAI: The state government will soon come up with a bill to regulate pre-primary schools, said school education minister Vinod Tawde at a press conference at Vidhan Bhavan on Wednesday. The draft bill is in the final stages of preparation, he added.

 

The decision came after the government received several complaints about overcharging of fees and inadequate infrastructure by pre-primary schools run by private trusts.

 

Pre-primary section comprises playgroup, nursery and kindergarten. At present, there is no state or local body control over pre-primary education and its fee structure.

 

Owing to mounting pressure from parents and peoples' representatives, the state government has on several occasions in the past announced that the bill was in the pipeline. The previous government had set up a 21-member committee under the leadership of then minister of state for education department Fauzia Khan. The panel submitted its report in July 2012, which recommended a new Maharashtra Pre-Primary Education Act among others.

 

capitation fees should not be taken, children and their parents not be interviewed or made to takes tests and registration or recognition of all pre-primary schools be made compulsory. The report has been kept cold storage since then.

 

Think tanks, too, have raised the need for a policy to regulate the sector. Last year, Early Childhood Association, a group of pre-schools in the country, sent a 10-point recommendation to Union minister for women and child development Menka Gandhi.

 

The recommendations include quality certification by an independent body, common curriculum, prescribed student-teacher ratio and qualified teachers.