A fact-finding team constituted by District Education Office (DEO) of Kaski has found private schools fleecing students by forcing them into buying text-books only from certain book shops.
Also, the team headed by District Education Officer Ishwor Raj Regmi has disclosed that some schools were even selling text-books to students at high prices on their own premises.
As the team reached Sishu Niketan Higher Secondary School of Pokhara on the first day of its mission, guardians were purchasing text-books for their children. “We instructed the school´s principal to immediately stop selling books,” Regmi said. “We have also asked him to appear in our office with reasonable clarifications.”
According to Regmi, the team also found that Fish Tail Higher Secondary School and Motherland Higher Secondary School of Pokhara had categorically asked their students to buy text-books from certain book shops. Fish Tail had asked its students to buy books from Mankamana Stationery while Motherland had instructed its students to buy books from Ozone and Barahi stationeries of Pokhara.
Ramesh Raj Paudel, Under-Secretary at the Kaski DEO, who is also a member of the team, said private schools in Pokhara had infringed upon the rights of guardians to buy text-books from any book shop of their choice. “It is absolutely illegal,” Paudel said, adding, “It is against the concept of open market, too.”
The team was formed following complaints from guardians that many private schools were forcing students into buying educational materials at a high price from certain book shops. The education regulations do not allow schools to sell text-books.
The regulations have also barred schools from making their students buy text-books from certain book shops. DEO Regmi said his team will inspect more schools in the days to come.
(Source: Republica Nepal)