What is the Right to Education Act (RTE Act)?

In a highly populated country like India, the masses have an undisputed need for education. To ensure a better education for its people, The Parliament of India enacted The Right to Education Act 2009, also known as the RTE Act 2009, on 4 August 2009. This article mainly describes the importance of free and compulsory education for children and makes the necessary provisions. This act especially concerns children aged between 6-14 under Article 21 (A) of the Constitution of India. On 1 April 2010, this act was brought into effect, making India one of 135 countries that have made education a fundamental right for every child.

Under this act, some minimum norms have been declared for elementary schools and private institutions. Unrecognized schools have been prohibited from practicing and advocating against donation fees and interviews of children at the time of admission. RTE helps the government keep a check on all the children in the neighborhood by conducting surveys and also allows the children to get all the help and support they can get from the government.  All the children that are identified with willingness and potential are further supported as well. Sarkari result also helps the children to seek all the government  related notification earlier.

There have been a lot of gaps in the education system in the whole country as well as in the states individually. RTE helps identify and map out these shortcomings region by region for the state to take care of. The state guides and gives direction while the local government takes all the necessary action to fix the problems and improve the overall quality of education.

Among several other provisions of the Right to Education Act, here are some;

1. Compulsory and free education for all

The government is obliged to give free and compulsory elementary education up to class 8 in a neighborhood school to every child living within 1 km of that region. No child must pay fees or charges for at least pursuing their elementary education. Among other free provisions under this act are free textbooks, uniforms, stationery items, and unique educational material that has also been available for children with disabilities.

2. Pupil-Teacher-Ratios, Bathrooms, Working Days, Drinking Water Facility

The Right to Education Act determines several other norms and standards relating to Pupil-Teacher-Ratios, classrooms, separate toilets for girls and boys, drinking water facilities, number of school working days, working hours of teachers, etc. Every elementary school (Primary school + Middle School) in India has to comply with this set of norms to maintain a minimum standard set by the Right to Education Act.

3. Special provisions for exceptional cases

The Right to Education Act mandates that there should be proper provisions for an out-of-school child. They must be admitted to an age-appropriate class and provided with special training to ensure an age-appropriate learning level similar to that of their peers.

4. Qualified teachers that make the cut

Smiling Teacher With Books in Hand Standing At Classroom In

The Right to Education Act firstly ensures an adequate number of teachers keeping in mind the teacher-student ratio. It also makes it compulsory to hire trained teachers, i.e., teachers with the required entry and academic qualifications.

5. Absolutely against discrimination

The Right to Education Act 2009 prohibits all kinds of physical punishment and mental harassment, discrimination based on gender, caste, class, and religion, screening procedures for admission of children, capitation fee, private tuition centers, and the functioning of unrecognized schools.

Acts like the Right to Education Act are made to ensure minimum regulation for all young children deprived of opportunities just because of financial constraints. By putting such acts into effect, the government gives all children a fair chance to explore and learn about education and its slight uses in the real world. Although this act mainly affects and concerns young children and their elementary education, the opportunities are limitless in our country.

Any child willing and hardworking will find his way to even higher education through scholarships and concessions. The key here is hard work, skills, and consistency. For the rest, our country provides its students with so many opportunities that they can take advantage of them and reach such great heights.

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