Parents Stand By School As Management Decides To File Appeal Before Edu Dept
The state government on Tuesday derecognised the old
and respected St Marys School (SSC) in Mazgaon over charges of insufficient infrastructure,
unlawful collection of capitation fees besides other violations of norms.
The order passed by the school education departments deputy director has left a
question mark over the fate of the 78-year-old institution,which has produced masses
of successful alumni, and its about 1,000 students. The management of the Jesuit-run
school said it would soon lodge an appeal with the education departments director
against his deputy's decision.
In his May 24 order, Sunil Chavan, deputy director of the education department,
said that the SSC school was derecognised after it failed to provide a convincing
reply to its show-cause notice sent. In the March notice, St Marys management was
asked to explain, among other things, the wrongful appointment of the principal,
manipulated exam results, the collection of Rs. 1.43 crore in capitation fees, the
lack of toilets and basic drinking water facilities.
The St Marys School run by the Bombay St Marys Society in
has been deficient in almost all 11 aspects, the order says.
The south Mumbai education inspectors office followed up with the school to meet
the requirements for almost two years, but they failed.
Since the institution was found violating education department norms, the order
adds, the deputy directors office is derecognising the school at the end of the 2010-11
As things currently stand, the education department move has left St Marys an unauthorised
school. The state education board is expected to soon withdraw its affiliation to
the school. St Marys management claims that it is being harassed by parties with
vested interests. Its principal Father Baptist Pinto said in a statement: The order
was passed on frivolous grounds. It has been deliberately passed close to the schools
reopening to jeopardize a minority institution of repute.
Father Pinto added that the school is planning to appeal before the education departments
director against the order.
The derecognition is the latest chapter in a row that started about four years ago
when a member of the Parent Teacher Association (PTA)
Nanasaheb Kute Patil, complained to the education department about an access fee
charged by the school for registering parents in the PTA, something the government
prohibits. Thereafter, Patil filed many right to information applications about
The schools principal accuses Patil of maligning its reputation because his sons
admission was cancelled.
In 2009, Patil accused the Mazgaon school of hoarding capitation fees of more than
Rs. 1.43 crore on which the education department held a preliminary probe. The case
was then sent to the Mumbai polices Economic Offence Wing, but it dismissed the
file on the grounds that the accusation was not a criminal offence. As a result,
the education department started an inquiry on its own into the capitation fees,
holding many hearings that it says the schools representatives did not attend.
Meanwhile, Patil filed more complaints against St Marys, which the department followed
up with inquiries and found many to be true.
Finally, on March 31 this year, the department issued a show-cause notice to the
school. In response, St Marys sent three letters with their side of the story, all
of which the department found unconvincing. So, on Tuesday, the department derecognised
My fight against malpractices has finally reached a logical conclusion, said Patil.
It proves that there are some untainted officials in the education department who
went ahead and inquired the charges made against a school of such repute.
Courtesy: Times of India