|HOME SCHOOLING / INTERNATIONAL|
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Indian Express: Plea dismissed, but homeschooling still a grey area.
Compulsory Education Ages: 6-14
Legal Status: A new education law (Right to Free and Compulsory Education Act of 2009, RTE) came into effect on April 1, 2010 that mandates compulsory attendance in schools. Education in India is both a national and state matter. In the past, homeschooling has been regulated solely at the state-level and homeschoolers have largely been left alone.
Homeschoolers and alternative schools in India are continuing to petition the government in favor of a parent's right to choose the form of his child's education. In April 2010, the High Court heard a case regarding whether the RTE infringes on the freedom of parents. The court dismissed the petition, but gave parents who homeschool or send their children to alternative schools eight weeks to make a presentation before the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD). Homeschoolers met to draft a presentation, as well as a letter to the Minister of MHRD asking that he accommodate homeschooling in the RTE Act or at the very least clarify its stand on home education.
In September 2010, Minister of Education Kapil Sibal released a statement through The Times of India stating that the “RTE Act wants every child to be in school, but if somebody decides not to send his/her children to school, we [the government] are not going to interfere. The compulsion is on the state, not on the parents. Parents are free not to send their children to school, but teach them at home. We cannot be micromanaging.” This statement offers the official clarification that homeschoolers in India have been waiting for.
Estimated number of homeschoolers: 500-1000 children
Last Updated: September 29, 2013