CBSE schools come up with three-tier fee payment system based on financial capacity of students

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KOCHI: Even as the online classes are going full throttle, parents are clearly unhappy when it comes to paying the school fees of their children. They believe it’s unfair to ask them to pay the standard fees when the child is only attending an hour or two of the classes, that too while remaining at home. The CBSE schools have a different take on the issue. Anees M, whose son is in Class VIII at a prominent CBSE school, said the schools cannot demand the normal fees from parents.

“Besides the tuition fees, the schools charge for conveyance, library, computer and extracurricular activities. However, since the students are not attending classes on the campus, these fees under the various sub-heads become redundant. So the schools should not levy the same,” he said. Kirti Anil, another parent, said, “The pandemic has pinched the pockets of several people. Many have lost their jobs. So, it is unfair to ask the parents to cough up the full amount as fees, that too for a few hours of classes daily,” she said, adding, “Since each CBSE school uses textbooks by a different publisher, they won’t be able to come up with a channel like VICTERS”.

Indira Rajan, secretary-general, Council of CBSE Schools, said CBSE schools believe in qualitative education. The concerns voiced by the parents are justified and this is why the council suggested multiple options to schools. She also said, “We have decided to maintain last year’s fee structure. However, it is the school which has to decide the way forward. At a meeting recently, member schools decided to adopt a three-tier system. Under this, the students can be divided into four categories based on their financial capacity.”

“Forty per cent of parents can pay the full fees. Then there are 40 per cent who can be given the option to pay the fees in instalments over 10 months and the remaining 20 per cent, who are unable to pay the entire fees, can approach the school for concession,” she said, adding, “Several schools have decided to do away with miscellaneous fees like conveyance and computer”.

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