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Rajasthan’s education guidelines irk NCPCR

Topics Covered: Statutory, regulatory and various quasi-judicial bodies.

Rajasthan’s education guidelines irk NCPCR

Context:

National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) has pulled up the Rajasthan government for its new guidelines on elementary education.

 What’s the issue?

NCPCR said the new guidelines “violate” the Right to Education Act of 2009 and deny children from economically weaker sections the right to free education in nursery classes.

The guidelines state that admissions to private schools under the RTE Act, 2009, for the 2020-21 academic year will take place only from class 1 or above, and that the law’s provisions will not be applicable for pre-schoolers. 

  • This is in contravention of the RTE Act 2009, which states that private schools will have to admit, “to the extent of at least twenty five per cent of the strength of that class, children belonging to weaker section and disadvantaged group in the neighbourhood and provide free and compulsory education till its completion.”

The guidelines also violate the RTE Act insofar as they recommend the age of admission to be “5 years or above but less than 7 years as of 31st March 2020.”

  • However, under the Central law there is no such restriction and a “male or female child of the age of six to fourteen years” can seek admission.

rte_act

Powers of NCPCR to inquire into such complaints:

Under the RTE Act, 2009, the NCPCR can:

  1. inquire into complaints about violation of the law.
  2. summon an individual and demand evidence.
  3. seek a magisterial enquiry.
  4. file a writ petition in the High Court or Supreme Court.
  5. approach the government concerned for prosecution of the offender.
  6. recommend interim relief to those affected.

About NCPCR:

Set up in March 2007 under the Commission for Protection of Child Rights Act, 2005.

It works under the administrative control of the Ministry of Women & Child Development.

  • The Commission’s Mandate is to ensure that all Laws, Policies, Programmes, and Administrative Mechanisms are in consonance with the Child Rights perspective as enshrined in the Constitution of India and also the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Composition:

This commission has a chairperson and six members of which at least two should be women.

  • All of them are appointed by Central Government for three years.
  • The maximum age to serve in commission is 65 years for Chairman and 60 years for members.

InstaLinks:

Prelims Link:

  1. NCPCR- composition and functions.
  2. Powers of NCPCR under RTE Act.
  3. Highlights of RTE Act.
  4. Children covered under RTE.

Mains Link:

Discuss the need for and significance of RTE act.

Sources: the Hindu.