Wednesday, February 6, 2002, Chandigarh, India


N C R   S T O R I E S


Tuition bureaux selling dreams to gullible students
R.D. Sapra

Sonepat, February 5
A fierce competition for jobs has sparked off a fad to seek private tutors that the parents feel will give their child an edge over the rest. And there are any number of tutors available through several bureaux which operate either from the private houses or rented places in the various localities of the city and elsewhere. The popular ones may have one or more centres in or even outside the city.

The number of such institutes has risen sharply over the

last couple of years as has the number of students. The reason may not necessarily be the increasing number of aspiring youngsters in the district.

It is a competitive world and the additional coaching is necessary for better results, remarked many heads of these institutions.

Young students patronising such bureaux generally belong to the well-off sections of society.

But there are grown-ups also who enrol in the institutes to pick up English conversational skills, they point out. It is a must for their social standing.

The tuition charges in the private institutes vary according to the courses and the popularity of the bureau. The maximum demand is for physics, chemistry and mathematics.

The publicity for these private tutorial units is done by the parents and the students themselves-popularising a centre through the word of mouth, once they have benefited from it.

The owners of these bureaux claim that the teaching here is of high standard and guaranteed to fulfil the aims of both the students and the parents. Yet, most established bureaux insist on advance payment of fees.

However, the growing competition between the various bureaux to enrol maximum students has led to some dividends being passed onto the students. Resultantly, some tutorial bureaux allow new students even a trial class to judge the teacher for the course he intends to enrol in.

As the number of tuition bureaux increases, there is a similar increase in the demand for teachers. As such, many graduates, who had been on the look-out for jobs, have found themselves eligible for becoming a teacher in these bureaux.

It has also provided an opportunity to the people to earn extra money in their spare time. A large number of staff members in these bureaux work as part-time staff, who otherwise work as accountants, clerks, assistants in various offices of the city.

And then, there are schoolteachers themselves, who coerce students to take private coaching with the lure of better marks. These teachers, however, have to remit 20 to 30 per cent of their earnings to the bureau where they are registered.

All teachers though may not be lucky enough to be allowed to retain 70 per cent of their earnings.

Many women teachers, hard pressed for money, were told

that they would be given Rs 200 per tuition, but were paid much less later.

In tune with the growing demand for high marks, the target of these bureaux and the teachers is limited to ensure that their students secure good marks in the examinations.

Hence, they narrow down their teaching to get students to memorise the selected questions. The strategy generally works and the students tend to do reasonably well.

So instead of educating young boys and girls in any real sense, the bureaux merely load them with information which is forgotten once the examinations are over.

Although the Haryana Government had banned tuitions by college teachers, most of them are engaged in it without any fear of penal action by the authorities.

Tuition bureau and academy exists in almost every mohalla and street of this city and elsewhere in the district.

Clearly, the authorities have failed to regulate such institutes. Parents of many wards alleged that the owners of these bureaux charge exorbitant fees from the students and even refuse to issue receipts to them.

They urged the state government to order a high-level inquiry into the racket and take stern action against the culprits.


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