HC upholds GO on merger of sparse student strength schools
Bangalore: Karnataka High Court on Thursday dismissed a public interest litigation by noted Kannada litterateurs and Jnanpith award winners seeking quashing of a state government gazette notification on merger of schools with less than 10 students with bigger schools.
The government's decision to merge schools would help mobilising extra infrastructure and imbibing quality education in a holistic way, a division bench comprising Chief Justice Vikramjit Sen and Justice B V Nagarathna observed.
Petioners G S Shivarudrappa, Girish Karnad, Chandrashekar Kambar and U R Ananthmurthy had sought a directive to the government to reopen all those government Kannada primary, secondary schools closed or merged after the right to education was declared as a fundamental right.
The petitioners had also sought implementation of the Right of Children for Free and Compulsory Education Act 2009 and framing of rules under it.
They claim that 3,073 Kannada primary schools and 101 government secondary schools were going to be closed or merged for want of students.
The state government submitted that the decision to merge those schools with less than five and 10 students with bigger schools nearby would favour students and was aimed at developing competitiveness.
It said 131 primary schools had zero strength, 551 had less than five students and 2,480 schools enrolled less than 10 students. Among higher primary schools, there were no students in 74 schools and there are less than 10 students in 380 schools.