Odisha govt announces reduction in tuition fee in all aided & unaided private schools

The state government notification follows a high court directive which asked the government to reduce fees

Odisha govt announces reduction in tuition fee in all aided & unaided private schools
Press Trust of India | Jan 20, 2021 - 1:14 p.m. IST
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BHUBANESWAR: In a major relief for students and their guardians, Odisha government has announced a reduction of tuition fees in all aided and unaided private schools for the 2020-2021 academic session in wake of the prevailing COVID-19 pandemic situation. The School and Mass Education department in a notification issued on Tuesday said that the tuition fee reduction will be made in seven different slabs.

While there will be no waiver for schools charging Rs 6,000 per annum, those charging between Rs 6,001 to Rs 12,001 will reduce the tuition fee by 7.5 per cent. Twelve per cent reduction for tuition fees between Rs 12,001 and Rs 24, 000 annually, 15 per cent for fees between Rs 24,001 to Rs 48,000, 20 per cent for school tuition fees of Rs 48,001 to Rs 72,000, 25 per cent for Rs 72,001 to Rs 1 lakh fees and 26 per cent for fees above Rs 1 lakh per annum, the notification said. This apart, schools cannot charge students for food and transport.

However, a 30 per cent waiver will be given on hostel fees, the notification said. The state government action came based on a High Court directive which asked the government to reduce the fees in all aided and unaided private schools for the 2020-21 academic session in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

"We hope that the aided and unaided private schools will abide by the court order," School and Mass Education minister SR Dash told reporters. Earlier, several parents' associations had gone to the High Court after the state government and the schools refused to reduce the fees even as schools remained closed due to the pandemic.

Responding to a Public Interest Litigation (PIL), the state government had informed the High Court that it had no power to regulate fees fixed by private schools.

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had earlier this month announced waiver of examination fees of Class 10 students, who would appear at the board examinations in 2021. The decision would benefit six lakh students. The government would bear Rs 27 crore towards the exemption, Patnaik had said in a statement.

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