Schools in Punjab taking online classes can charge only tuition fee from students for the lockdown period, the state government said on Thursday.
Fees for admission, uniform or any other charges in any form can not be charged from students, it said.
School managements should also refrain from increasing the fee or any other charges during this academic session in view of the nationwide crisis Education Minister Vijay Inder Singla said.
In a press statement here, he said economic activities have reduced to the minimal due to the lockdown, hence there is a dire need to provide relief to parents of students.
"We have passed an order mandating the schools to charge just tuition fees during the lockdown period," he said, adding that the government order clearly states that only those schools, who are conducting online classes, can charge tuition fee, while others can not charge any fee.
"Although interest of students is paramount for us but with the new guidelines we have tried to strike a balance by allowing private schools to charge tuition fee so that they can meet their monthly expenses and pay their staff timely," he said.
The minister said no school can expel any student if he fails to pay tuition fee in time or gets it delayed due to any reason.
"We have also provisioned that parents can pay tuition fees for their children on monthly basis instead of quarterly basis so that parents of the students are not burdened with the amount," he added.
Protecting the rights of the employees, the minister also instructed that schools can neither stop nor reduce the salaries of their teachers and other employees under any circumstances.
Besides, schools managements have also been instructed that they cannot remove employee due to the lockdown and low affair of financial activities.
"Strict action will be taken against all those schools, which will either stop or reduce the salaries of the teachers and employees," Singla said, adding that the Education Department is monitoring the situation.