Important as it is, our educational rights have been safeguarded by our Indian Constitution and promoted by the Indian government from time to time through various proposals and amendments. Prohibition of child labor, Right to free education – all of these sound quite familiar to us. We have come across them occasionally in newspapers or in some discussions we were a part of or in the debates we were watching in the televisions. But very few of us are really aware of the education laws that have been safeguarded by the constitution all these years. So why not go through some of them again at a glance?
Free and Compulsory education to children (Article 21A)
According to this article, the state shall provide free and compulsory education to all children of the age of 6-14 years, in such manner as the state may by law determine.
The right against exploitation (Article 23 and 24)
These articles prohibit human trafficking, forced labor and employment of children below the age of 14.
Freedom of Religion (Article 28)
No religious instruction can be provided in any educational institution that has been totally maintained out of the state funds. This does not apply to an educational institutions established under trust that requires religious instruction to be imparted.
Fundamental Educational Right (Article 29 and 30)
According to this, all minorities, religious or linguistic, can set up their own educational institutions to preserve and develop their own culture. In granting aid to institutions, the State cannot discriminate against any institution on the basis of the fact that it is administered by a minority institution.
Right to remedy (Article 32)
If we are talking about our rights, we should be assured that they have a remedy to make it real. Article 32 states that a person can approach the supreme court for remedy if a fundamental right of a person is violated and he is bound to be given justice.
Childhood care and education (Article 45)
This article including its amendment in 2002, includes provision of early childhood care and education to all children who have not completed 6 years of age. It also promotes the educational and economic interest of backward classes.
Fundamental duty of parents (Article 51A)
It is imposed on the parents and guardians of children (6-14 years) to provide opportunities for education.
Instruction in mother tongue (Article 350A)
This states that children belonging to linguistic minority groups that they be given facilities for instruction in their mother tongue at primary stage of education. This will also ensure proper securing of mother tongue.
The most recent one,
Right to education (Article 21A)
By making the move of operationalising this historic law on 2nd April 2010, it will be ensured that children who have been deprived of education due to some or the other reason get what they deserve. This had made it compulsory for the local and state government to see to the education of children (6-14years) and also for the private institutions to have a 25% reservation for this cause.
And then, there is this interesting one, though not a federal law.
Anti-Copying act (1992)
This law, passed in 1992, by the Government of Uttar Pradesh aimed to stop the use of unfair means and practice of mass copying in school and university examination in the state an offense.
Laws and rights have always existed, if only we were aware of how to exercise them and channel their execution in the right direction.