Private school bodies knock PM’s door

Kathmandu, December 10:

Association of Private Educational Institutions Nepal (APEIN), an apex body of private educational organisations, today submitted a memorandum to all the 75 District Education Offices demanding to scrap five per cent Education Service Tax (EST) and guarantee a stability and continuity of private educational institutions by formulating a separate law for them.

APEIN is a group of six private educational organisations, namely Private and Boarding Schools’ Organisation of Nepal (PABSON), Higher Secondary Schools’ Association Nepal, Association of Private Health Institute Nepal, National Private and Boarding Schools’ Association of Nepal, and Forum for Health and Technical Sciences.

Organising a press conference here today PABSON stated that it was compelled to announce phase-wise protest programmes as the government failed to address their demands in time.

“Many times we tried to draw the attention of government to address the issues but to no avail. Therefore we were forced to issue pressure on the government to find out the solution for the prevailing problems, especially to annul EST,” stated the release issued at the conference.

It said, “We want the government to initiate Public-Private Partnership in the education sector by formulating separate policies and positive concepts to encourage the private sectors’ ownership, structure, investment and results.”

According to the statement, they formed districts level Association of Private Educational Institutions Nepal (APEIN) in the first phase to give strength to their protest programmes.

“The organisation will also collect public opinions by organising comprehensive discussion on stability, continuity, security and clarity of the investment in the sector, scraping of EST, and consult with the political parties, members of the Constituent Assembly, guardians, civil society and professional organisations.”

“They will hand over the memorandum to the Prime Minister on 14 December. All the district working committees of APEIN will submit the memorandum letter to the PM through all chief district officers on the day.”

Other demand includes keeping the sector in the government priority, participation of PABSON representatives in all the government mechanism concerned to education sector and declaring school and children as peace zone.

Currently, about 8,500 private schools with 2 million students are operating, covering 30 per cent of the school education in the country and creating employment opportunities for about 175,000 teachers and other staffs.