Bangalore: Curtains for 600 English medium schools

Harold F. Schiffman haroldfs at
Sat Sep 16 15:38:14 UTC 2006

From: The Times of India Online

Bangalore Govt shuts over 600 Bangalore schools
[ 15 Sep, 2006 2308hrs ISTTIMES NEWS NETWORK ]

BANGALORE: It's curtains for over 600 English medium schools in Bangalore.
Coming down heavily on private schools violating the language policy, the
Karnataka government on Friday directed these schools in Bangalore South
to shut down. The sudden crackdown has dealt a blow to thousands of
students. The Bangalore South DDPI issued orders to school authorities,
informing the government's decision to withdraw permission to run the
school and transfer students to nearest government schools. On Saturday,
150 more private English-medium schools in Bangalore South will be asked
to close down. The education department had in July slapped show-cause
notices on 1,440 schools in Bangalore for violation of language policy.

"These schools have been permitted to offer Kannada-medium education but
our inspection team found that the classes and exams were conducted in
English and other languages. The 1994 state language policy does not allow
this,"primary and secondary education minister Basavaraj Horatti said. As
per the language policy, all primary schools which have been permitted
after 1994 should follow Kannada as medium of instruction. "In the first
phase, schools which do not have basic infrastructure and required faculty
will be shut down. By next week, similar action will be taken against
schools in all districts,"Horatti said.

G S Sharma, president, Karnataka Unaided Schools' Management Association,
said the crackdown is illegal. "As per the Education Act, the government
has to give one year's notice to schools before asking them to shut. Here
the government is asking schools to close down at knifepoint. We will
protest this order." Sharma also found the state's language policy to be
'discriminatory' as it allows schools which started before 1994 to enjoy
English-medium education. "Though schools set up after 1994 have given an
undertaking to follow Kannada as medium of instruction, parents are
demanding English-medium education in these schools. You cannot have one
section of the society enjoying English education and forcing the other
section to stick to Kannada."


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