July 4, 2013, 12:00 am
Private schools can now directly approach the examination board for Central Board of Secondary Education(CBSE) affiliation.
A new amendment in the CBSE byelaws — made at the behest of Minister of State for Human Resource Development (HRD) Shashi Tharoor — will allow private schools to bypass state governments and directly approach the examination board for affiliation.
For the uninitiated, all private schools have to first seek the permission of their respective state governments, which comes in the form of a ‘No Objection Certificate (NOC)’, before applying for CBSE affiliation. This is now being removed after the HRD ministry found that it was being used by corrupt state officials to demand bribes from private schools. On an average, the board receives about 2,000 applications every year for affiliation.
Speaking to dna, Tharoor said, “The biggest problem, and I’ll be honest with you, is that the regulation in our country gives too many people the opportunity to take bribes. I am in favour of reducing the number of regulations and not adding to them.”
According to Tharoor, CBSE has agreed to his suggestion of abolishing the NOC policy. “We’re working on it. This month itself we will try to waive it (the policy),” he said. He, however, quickly added that private schools will still need recognition by the state government.
“State recognition is required to start a school. The business of taking an NOC comes years later when the first batch of students reaches class VIII or IX and the school needs the board’s affiliation for certification of Class X and XII exams,” CBSE chairman Vineet Joshi clarified.
“The NOC from the state used to act as a layer of quality check for the board, but with corruption this rule has become more of a nuisance for both CBSE and the schools,” Joshi said.
This move, when implemented, might not go down too well with the state governments.
But for now officials are not willing to react to this proposal. “I don’t know what the centre has in mind exactly, so, I can’t comment on the matter,” said JS Sahariya, additional secretary, school education, Maharashtra government.
“Its a welcome move. The system of NOC encourages corruption as one needs to grease palms of every person in the process. I hope abolishing the state’s NOC will finally end corruption,” said Deepshikha Shrivastav, principal of Rajhans School, Andheri.