Islamabad: Chief Justice Asif Saeed Khan Khosa on Tuesday observed that the owners of private schools should switch over to another business if they are not sound in the existing one. Heading a three-member bench of the apex court hearing the case of private schools fees, the Chief Justice observed that the state is responsible for providing quality education to children in accordance with the constitution.
The Chief Justice however said it is also the job of the state to regulate private educational institutions. He said the management of private schools needs to wait for three years if they want reasonable increase in the fees adding ifthey want an increase of more than five percent in fees every year then they should surrender their licence.
The Chief Justice said if the owners of private schools are not satisfied with their income then they should adopt another business. He noted that apart from charging fees, the owners make a huge profit also for providing books and uniforms to the students. “The profits of these schools are in billions of rupees and their losses are only in profit,” the CJ said. Justice Ijazul Ahsen, another member of the bench, observed that the private school owners have also now established colleges and universities.
Makhdoom Ali Khan, counsel for a private school, submitted that tuition centers are making huge money while owners of private schools can’t afford salaries of teachers. “If you say that you are facing losses then it does not mean that your demand for an increase in fees should be accepted,” Justice Faisal Arab observed. He further observed that in private schools the increase in fees is because of decline in the new admissions.
Makhdoom Ali Khan said the increase in fees is made after judging the affording capacity of parents. During the hearing, parents of children submitted before the court that owners of private schools are very powerful and do not implement the orders of the court in letter and spirit.
They contended that private schools are harassing their children. The Chief Justice said that they are examining the whole issue. Justice Ijazul Ahsen said the court is for everyone adding they will decide the matter after hearing reservations of all the parties. Later, the court adjourned the hearing for today (Wednesday).