Scottish Church College has decided to waive fees for the ongoing and forthcoming semesters for students who have lost a parent to Covid.
The college has been waiving tuition fees for students whose families have suffered income loss during the pandemic.
A notice signed by principal Madhumanjari Mandal says: “Under the prevailing pandemic situation those students who have lost either of their parents or both due to infection of Covid-19 shall be waived off all pending college fees for all semesters ahead on applying to the principal.”
Since the notice was issued on June 1, the waiver will come in force from the current semester, called even semester.
“A student who is now in the second semester won’t have to pay any fees till graduation if either of the parents or both have died of Covid. Such a loss is bound to put a student in a serious financial distress and force him or her to quit studies,” Mandal said.
A fee structure posted on the college website says a microbiology honours student has to pay Rs 42,636 in the second semester, which continues from January to June. The amount covers lab fee, lab development fee, academic development fee, tuition fee and annual fee.
A physics honours student in the second semester has to pay Rs 15,136.
Principal Mandal said they had received eight applications for full waiver till Friday.
“Teachers learnt from students about the severe economic distress they are in and their inability to pay the fees. Our governing body then took the decision,” she said.
An official of the college said many students have lost close family members during the second surge of Covid infections.
“So we have scaled up the extent of waiver to stand by our students,” vice-principal Supratim Das said.
A teacher of Scottish Church College said continuance of classes on digital platforms was resulting in a rise in the expenses of the institution. Campuses are closed now and classes are being held on digital platforms as a precaution against Covid.
Last year, the state government had barred colleges across the state from collecting money from undergraduate aspirants for application forms and prospectuses.
“In addition to that, last year we had to open the online admission portal repeatedly to keep admitting students following an instruction from the government. The company that manages the portal charged us for the entire duration the portal was operational. Our expenses are rising but we will continue extending help to students in distress,” the teacher said.