The Kerala High Court has ordered that schools levy fees only on the actual expenses incurred for this academic year. Justice Devan Ramachandran filed the order after hearing petitions filed by parents and activists seeking a fee waiver in the wake of the Covid-19 crisis.
According to the order, unaided schools mentioned in the petitions that are affiliated to CBSE and ICSE, should submit the exact expenditure by November 17. The fee that can be levied from students will be decided based on this submission.
According to the order, people from all walks of society were affected financially by the Covid-19 lockdown. The court said that no profit should be made directly or otherwise by running the school.
In another instance, the Kerala High Court in October had directed the managements of CBSE schools in the state to file a statement explaining under what heads it was permitting its member schools to charge fees for the academic year 2020-21. A petition filed by school managements alleged that parents of the students are taking unfair advantage of the Covid-19 pandemic and are refusing to pay the fees for the said academic year. While the management claimed that they were entitled to charge the same fees as the 2019-2020, the court said that the managements had to explain why so when most of the facilities that were offered physically by the schools were now denied to their students on account of online classes.
Meanwhile, the Calcutta High Court directed private schools in the state to offer 20% reduction of fees across the board from April 2020 till the month following the one in which the schools reopen physically. In Rajasthan, while a Single Bench had earlier permitted schools to collect 70 per cent of the annual tuition fees chargeable at the rate at which the fees were collected during the previous academic year, the Rajasthan High Court stayed the order.