The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) Government has agreed to take over the MCD run schools in order to prevent “educational crisis” if adequate funds are provided by the government.
The Directorate of Education filed an affidavit agreeing to take over the schools run by Municipal Corporations, Delhi Cantonment Board and the New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) if adequate funds are provided.
The affidavit was received by Judges Rajendra Menon and K Rao which scheduled the further hearing to be on April 23, 2019.
This decision got originated when NGO Social Jurist filed a petition suggesting the government take over all public-funded schools for enhancing the quality of education, to which Delhi Government standing Counsel Ramesh Singh filed a response, as ordered by DoE.
The NGO filed the petition through advocate Ashok Agarwal, alleging that over 25 lakh students study in government-run schools and public-funded schools, and none of the unified body has been established to head them, even after NCERT has made various recommendations regarding this since 2010.
The affidavit read, “The responsibility of providing primary education lies with the local bodies, that is, municipal corporations of Delhi and the DoE provides education to children of classes VI onwards.”
The affidavit alleged that the education has not been prioritized effectively by local bodies and the NGO argued that repeated complaints have not been considered at all.
“As a result not only the fundamental right of children, enrolled in the schools of local bodies, to receive good quality education is being violated, it is unfair for them to not get similar kind of opportunities as their peers in Delhi government schools despite being the resident of the same territory,” it said.
It further added that it will be effective for all government schools in Delhi to run under one body and the Delhi Government should hold the responsibility.
“This will enable children who are now enrolled in the schools of local bodies to receive a good quality education at par with the presently enrolled students in the schools run by Delhi government. Further teachers and principals too would get better training opportunities and exposures as their peers in Delhi government schools,” the DoE said. The DoE said in the affidavit that “the issues with respect to various aspects including finances, post creations, land ownership, and valuations, the capacity of administering, budget provisions and statutory provisions may be decided by the high court in light of the in-principle agreement of the Delhi government to run these schools.” “If legal provisions permit and adequate funds are provided, to avert the existing educational crisis, the government of NCT of Delhi agrees in-principle to run the schools that are currently being run by the Municipal Corporations of Delhi and other bodies,” the DoE said.
The affidavit requested the high court to form a heading body for monitoring the implementation of the new policy. It also requested the court to implement this as soon as possible because the children’s education and future rely on these decisions.
The plea filed by the NGO, as advised by NCERT, the state-run schools should be headed under one main body called as the Government of NCT of Delhi.
“If all these schools are brought under the government of NCT of Delhi, there could be much better management and utilization of physical infrastructure and academic resources,” it said.
The plea also informed that this law shall be run under state government under the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009.
It argued that the quality of education provided by the public-funded schools is not effective as compared to other schools, hence in order to enhance the quality of education, the public-funded schools should be headed under the Delhi Government.