Right to Education Act
What is the act about? * Every child between the ages of 6 to 14 years has the right to free and compulsory education. This is stated as per the 86th Constitution Amendment Act added Article 21A. The right to education act seeks to give effect to this amendment * The government schools shall provide free education to all the children and the schools will be managed by school management committees (SMC). Private schools shall admit at least 25% of the children in their schools without any fee. * The National Commission for Elementary Education shall be constituted tomonitor all aspects of elementary education including quality.
The present Act has its history in the drafting of the Indian constitution at the time of Independence but are more specifically to the Constitutional Amendment that included the Article 21A in the Indian constitution making Education a fundamental Right. This amendment, however, specified the need for a legislation to describe the mode of implementation of the same which necessitated the drafting of a separate Education Bill. The rough draft of the bill was composed in year 2005. It received much opposition due to its mandatory provision to provide 25% reservation for disadvantaged children in private schools. The sub-committee of the Central Advisory Board of Education which prepared the draft Bill held this provision as a significant prerequisite for creating a democratic and egalitarian society. Indian Law commission had initially proposed 50% reservation for disadvantaged students in private schools.
Provisions Of The Act
* Children to be admitted to ‘age- appropriate’ class and they have the right to receive ‘special training’ to come at par with other children. * Ensure ‘good quality’ elementary education.
* Aided and private schools: 25% reservation for weaker & disadvantaged children. * Ensure that children from weaker and disadvantaged group are not discriminated against * Schools to get reimbursement for this expenditure.
* Govt. may provide free pre-school education.
* 25% reservation for weaker/ disadvantaged children applies here as well. * No capitation fee/ screening procedure for child or parents. * No child can be held back or expelled from school
* No physical punishment/ mental harassment of children
* Teachers: Minimum qualifications needed. Assess learning ability of each child and regularly meet parents * School Management Committee-
* with 3/4th parents/ guardians
Half the members should be women
Why is the act significant and what does it mean for India? The passing of the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act 2009 marks a historic moment for the children of India. This Act serves as a building block to ensure that every child has his or herright (as an entitlement) to get a quality elementary education, and that the State, with the help of families and communities, fulfils this obligation. Few countries in the world have such a national provision to ensure both free and child-centred, child-friendly education. What is ‘Free and Compulsory Elementary Education’?
All children between the ages of 6 and 14 shall have the right to free and compulsory elementary education at a neighborhood school. There is no direct (school fees) or indirect cost (uniforms, textbooks, mid-day meals, transportation) to be borne by the child or the parents to obtainelementary education. The government will provide schooling free-of-cost until a child’s elementary education is completed. What is the role envisaged for the community and parents to ensure RTE? The landmark passing of the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act 2009 marks a historic moment for the children of India. For the first time in India’s history, children will be guaranteed their right toquality elementary...
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