SC declares recovery of arrears in schools fee void

Terence J Sigamony September 13, 2019
  • The court had directed educational institutions receiving fee in excess of Rs.5,000/- per month to reduce their fees by 20 percent.
  • Schools fee shall be recalculated using the fee prevailing in 2017 as the base fee in accordance with the provisions of Laws of Punjab and Sindh.
  • Any excess fee found to have been charged shall be adjusted in the future fee.

ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court ruled that the private schools shall not recover as arrears for any reason or under any circumstances 20 percent reduction in fee in pursuant of its order dated 30-12-18.

The Court on December 30, 2018, had directed all the educational institutions receiving fee in excess of Rs.5,000/- per month to reduce their fees by 20 percent.

A three judge bench, headed by Chief Justice Asif Saeed Khan Khosa, on Friday released its detailed judgment on the private schools fee case.

The judgment authored by Justice Ijazul Ahsan noted that despite its order the schools have excessively increased fee since 2017 in violation of its order therefore all such increases are struck down. It will be deemed that there was no increase in fee since 2017 and fees were frozen at the rates prevailing in January, 2017.

Schools fee shall be recalculated using the fee prevailing in 2017 as the base fee in accordance with the provisions of Laws of Punjab and Sindh, respectively (adding annual increases permitted by the law/rules/regulations) till 2019 and onwards. The process of recalculation shall be supervised by the regulators and only the fee approved by them shall be treated as the chargeable fee.

Any excess fee found to have been charged shall be adjusted in the future fee.

The Regulators shall closely monitor the fee being charged by private schools to ensure strict compliance with the law and the rules/regulations. Complaint cells shall be set up to deal with complaints arising out of increase in fee in violation of the law/rules/regulations.

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