Education is a three-pronged activity, one is the school, second the student and, third the parents/ community. Where the participation of the parents or community is negligent or absent, education remains a supply model and not a demand model. The progress of a country largely depends on the growth of the education system, a system that is dynamic and matches the best practices in the world.
The Right To Education Act of 2009, which ensures free and compulsory education to children of the country, has been lauded as a landmark in the history of India. The Act also enumerates the role of the School Management Committee (SMC) as a very important component of school education. To provide for the participation of the parents in the governance of the academics and activities of the school the RTE Act has empowered the SMC.
Every affiliated school, subject to the State Governments’ provision for the same, must have an SMC. The term of the SMC is three years, and it shall meet at least twice in the academic session. The composition of the SMC shall consist of not more than 21 members. At least 50% of the members must be women. The composition of the SMC ensures the involvement of parents, teachers, teachers of other school, representatives of the Board.
Powers and Functions of the SMC:
The SMC ensures that-
1. Admissions are made without discretions.
2. The welfare of teachers and other employees are taken care of.
3. Appointment of teachers and other employees shall be made with the committee’s approval.
4. The SMC shall have financial powers beyond those delegated to the Principal.
5. It can audit the academics and activities without interfering with the freedom of the Principal.
6. The fees and other charges shall be approved by the SMC.
7. The budget presented by the Principal shall be reviewed by the SMC.
8. The SMC shall also review the steps taken for the safety and security of the students and staff of the school;
9. The SMC shall also look into the grievances of the staff and deal with these appropriately.
Thus, when the community, the parents, the teachers and the management of the school come together, then the systems as envisaged by the architects of the education systems prevalent in the nation become comparable to that of international standards. Hence, the SMC members must be aware of the laws of the State pertaining to education and must know their rights and duties, their extent of powers.