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West Bengal: Calcutta high court instructs schools to charge 80% fees for COVID-induced closure

For the pandemic-induced closure period, the Calcutta high court on October 5 has instructed schools to charge 80% of pre-COVID fees. The judges of the Calcutta high court further said that if parents of the students could not pay school fees on time due to the pandemic, students will not be expelled from the school. No teachers should be removed by schools and there will be no salary cut, the court stated.
 

West Bengal: Calcutta high court instructs schools to charge 80% fees for COVID-induced closure   -dbr
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West Bengal, First Published Oct 7, 2020, 12:07 PM IST
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Kolkata: For the pandemic-induced closure period, the Calcutta high court on October 5 instructed schools to charge 80% of pre-COVID fees. The court also said that institutes should limit their profit to 5% during the closure period.

The court took April 2019 as the benchmark, against which the reduction can be given, since things functioned normally back then.

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The judges of the Calcutta high court further said that if the parents of the students could not pay the school fees on time due to the pandemic, the students will not be expelled from the school. No teachers should be removed by schools and there will be no salary cut, the court stated.

Lawyers Raja Satyajit Banerjee and Vineet Ruia, who represented 145 schools, were heard by justices Sanjib Banerjee and Mousumi Bhattacharya on October 5. The hearing was continued till October 6.

During the past hearings, a state circular dated July 20, which had asked schools to follow certain guidelines regarding fee relief, was brought up. This circular asked schools not to charge fees for services which were not provided during the closure. Three other templates were being considered as the formulae for fee relief.

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On October 5, the court, however, observed that this circular might be vague. Hence, the court proposed to establish a universal formula.

Since schools are saving a lot during the closure period, they should pass on the benefits to students. All schools will have to comply with the order and a contempt petition may be moved in case of non-compliance, the court added.

 
 

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