compulsory child education and the law
compulsory child education and the law The right of education has now been enshrined into law. Every child must be educated from the age of six to fourteen. What does it actually mean? What it means is that she must attend a recognized school, be it run by government, local body or a private concern. What she learns is also not material. There are to be no examinations, no detention in the same class. No social stigma will attach to her. And it is not specified that when she is fourteen, what will happen to her. She will not be required to go to the school. There is a mention that "no examination will be held till the end of the elementary education". Will there be one at the end of it. Will it be necessary for the child to pass it. A certificate is to be issued to her under section 30 of the Act. But what will it say? Did she do it satisfactorily or just that she did it? if it the former, would she be required to be there until she does it to the satisfaction of the authorities that be. If so, for how long will she be there? As has been mentioned above, till the age of fourteen, she must be physically be there, or else? What will be done to her is not specified. In the earlier editions of compulsory education, the guardian was to be fined for not sending the ward to school. The provision is missing in this version though there is exhortation that every guardian will send his ward to school in the neighbourhood.
The wording of the section 10 is "it shall be the duty of every parent or guardian to admit or cause to be admitted his or her child or ward, as the case may be, to an elementary education in the neighbourhood school". Suppose I admit my ward to Doon School. Will I be committing an offence under section 10? Doon school is not in my neighbourhood. It is hundreds of kilometres away. Technically it would be a violation of the law. Any way I am safe since no punishment is provided for.