Hc seeks government counter on school merger | Vijayawada News

VIJAYWADA: The Andhra Pradesh High Court on Friday issued notices to the state government to file a counter affidavit in the filed petition challenging the merger of schools and rationalization of teachers.
Refusing to grant interim relief to the applicants, the High Court bench headed by the Chief Justice Prashant Kumar Mishra and DVSS Judge Somayajulu released the case for a rehearing on July 22. The motion was previously heard by a single judge. It was moved to a Divisional Bench after Solicitor General S Sriram raised a technical ground that according to the list a petition which challenges any statutory rule must be heard by a Divisional Bench.
The High Court had previously said that on the face of it GO 117 issued by the state government for the rationalization of teachers and the merger of schools appeared on its face to be in breach of the Right to Education Act (RTE) and the national education policy (CIP).
On Friday, Lead Counsel A Satya Prasad argued on behalf of the plaintiff. He said the state government was trying to implement English medium as the only medium in grades one through eight.
He said this not only contravenes the RTE, NEP Act but also the High Court judgment which overturned the state government’s decision to implement English from primary education. However, the state government was trying to indirectly implement the English media by declaring that only one media would be there for grades 1 to 8. The RTE Act and the NEP also emphasized the importance of the mother tongue and suggested that the medium of instruction at the primary level should be in the mother tongue for the overall development of children, he argued.
Satya Prasad further told the High Court that the merger of schools claimed by the state government under the NEP was in breach of the RTE Act. The way the state government was trying to implement the NEP will require students in the current primary level to travel more than 3 km due to the marking of grades 3 to 5 in the upper primary category. This will increase school dropouts, especially of girls, as parents may not prefer to send their children to distant places.
Considering Satya Prasad’s arguments, the court issued notices to the state government to file counter affidavits. Although Satya Prasad requested interim orders for the status quo, the High Court refused to grant a stay on the education policy.

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