Telangana: Private budget schools seek government support to overcome financial difficulties
While welcoming the Telangana government’s decision to reopen all educational institutions from September 1, the managements of private budget schools in the state have requested monetary support in the form of unsecured loans to help them overcome the crisis. financial distress resulting from their closure for almost 18 months. .
According to the Telangana Recognized Schools Management Association (TRSMA), about 3,500 private budget schools are closed and about one million teachers in these schools have changed professions to support their families. In Telangana, about 9,500 of the total 11,500 private schools are classified as low budget schools. These schools enroll about 33 lakh students.
“After the Telangana government announced that students would be promoted to the next class without compulsory attendance or assessment, almost 75% of students stopped attending classes. About 50% of these schools could not provide online courses. Many students are unreachable. Many started working with their parents for daily wages. According to our date, 3500 private budget schools in Telangana have been closed,” Madhusudhan Sadula, General Secretary of TRSMA and National Vice President of National Independent Schools Alliance (NISA), told indianexpress.com.
Speaking to the press, Dr. Kulbhushan Sharma, National Chairman of NISA, pointed out that the grim situation has led many school owners across the country to commit suicide. He said around 30 million people associated with education and related sectors have been affected across the country due to school closures.
Pradeep, 30, who ran an economic school in Jagtial district in Telangana and a young couple, Subramaniam and Rohini, who ran a school in Koilkuntla in Andhra Pradesh, had recently committed suicide, unable to cope with the constraints financial. “These are not suicides. These are institutional murders due to political failures. In today’s scenario, it is not easy to run a budget school and we do not need more deaths Sharma said, demanding government support.
“Schools remained closed for a long time. More than a million teachers have found other professions and students are not interested in education. It is an educational emergency,” Madhusudhan added.
TRSMA State Chairman Yadagiri Shekhar Rao called on parents to send their children to school without any worries. “We are ready to open schools, duly following all Covid protocols. It is our responsibility. But we want the government to support the schools with an unsecured loan of Rs 10 lakh to Rs 25 lakh to keep them going,” he added.
According to TRSMA, these schools are mostly run from rented space. As they have been closed for 18 months without any operation, the owners have been unable to pay rent, electricity charges, property taxes and EMIs for loans granted for establishment and expansion .
The association has asked the state government to extend the moratorium period for all schools’ existing loans by one year. Many school owners have received loans from private financiers and face harassment as they are unable to repay them. “The Center has now extended support under the Credit Guarantee Trust Fund for Micro and Small Enterprises (CGTMSE) to traders as well. This should also be extended to schools,” he said.
As the Telangana government has yet to issue guidelines for the reopening of private and public education institutions, managements have called for a comprehensive policy to allow schools to operate while containing the spread of Covid-19. NISA and TRSMA have demanded an inquest into the deaths of school owners and demanded an ex-gratia of Rs 50 lakh from the families of the deceased.