Private schools in Karnataka shut as staff go on strike

They oppose govt. order to charge only 70% of tuition fees

A majority of private schools in Karnataka have declared holiday on Tuesday with the teaching and non-teaching staff going on strike against the government’s order asking schools to charge only 70% of the tuition fees this academic year.

The holiday applies to both online and offline classes. All schools, including those affiliated to the State board, Central boards and international schools, have declared a holiday.

A press release by the Karnataka Private Unaided School Managements, Teaching and Non-Teaching Staff Coordination Committee (KPMTCC) stated that their staff would take out a rally from the City Railway Station to Freedom Park in Bengaluru on Tuesday. The committee consists of 11 private school associations.

Many private schools have communicated to parents through circulars that they supported the rally and the classes on Tuesday would remain suspended.

D. Shashi Kumar, convener of the committee, said the school managements and their staff had to protest as they were facing financial hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic. He said that many of their staff had lost jobs or faced salary cuts as a majority of parents had not paid the fees for the 2020-2021 academic year. He expressed disappointment that the government did not provide any assistance or compensation for the teaching and non-teaching staff during the pandemic.

The committee said the Department of Primary and Secondary Education was making it difficult for private schools to function as it demanded that they fulfil norms required for new schools.

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