Govt. withdraws minority status draft rule for schools

Education dept withdraws draft rule; schools to get minority status only if 25% students are from one minority community

On Tuesday, the primary and secondary education department announced the withdrawal of the draft rules for granting minority status to the schools.
In what was seen as a poll gimmick, the department had announced draft rules on March 19 that stated 25% from all minorities (linguistic and religious) should suffice for a school to get minority status. Less than a month later, the draft rule stands withdrawn.

The proposed change had caused uproar among educationists and in the Cabinet, which directed the withdrawal. “The main problem was the percentage issue and no one came to a consensus on it. Hence, the cabinet asked to withdraw it. By then the poll conduct came into place within few days. This had to be then decided by the election commission. So, the chief secretary of the government of Karnataka wrote a letter to the election commission in seeking for permission to withdraw the draft rules,” said an official from the primary and secondary education department.

The Election Commissions nod of approval came on Tuesday. the primary and secondary education department promptly issued a notice of withdrawal. It states: “The draft of the Karnataka Educational Institutions (Recognition of Minority Educational Institutions Terms and Condition) Rules, 2017 which was published in the official gazette on March 19, 2018, is hereby withdrawn from the official gazette with immediate effect.”

The issue of fixing a ceiling or percentage has touched upon a raw nerve among educationists and parents. They fear that the rules can be manipulated by schools to avoid taking students under the Right to Education Act. “No one can deny the right of a citizen or a student. If the rules leave leeway for misuse, then the central government must change relevant sections of the RTE Act to address the issue,” pointed out D Shashi Kumar, general secretary of Associated Managements of Primary and Secondary Schools in Karnataka (KAMS).

Date: Apr 18, 2018

Source: Bangalore Mirror