Nursery admissions: parents and school body at loggerheads

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

NEW DELHI - Just a week after the nursery admissions process began in the capital with the promise of being “much smoother” than previous years, complaints have started pouring in from parents about irregularities in different schools. School bodies, however, deny the allegations.

The major complaints of parents are about schools not giving admission to students from economically weaker sections and charging more money for applying than the allowed amount of Rs.25.

Sakshi Sharma, a parent, said: “The education department may have tried to regularise the admissions process but these schools are very smart. The admissions form is supposed to be Rs.25, but in a few schools some important details like date of submission and others are mentioned only in the prospectus - which you have to buy separately for Rs.250-300.”

“So if I am trying five-six schools for my child’s admission, I have to pay much more than what the government thinks we ought to,” she said.

Arvind Verma, another parent, said: “Some schools have the online option for form submission, but then that does not give you important details of the process, so you are forced to buy the prospectus.”

The admission process for nursery classes started Dec 15 across Delhi and since then the education department has received more than a hundred complaints against various schools.

But the Federation of Public Schools insists the process is smoother this year.

R.P. Mallik, chairman of the Federation, said: “There will always be some or the other kind of small complaint by parents when it comes to their children’s admissions. This time the nursery admissions are much smoother than previous years”.

The Federation of Public Schools has around 300 schools under its ambit in Delhi.

“There are complaints about schools charging more for the admission forms. The thing is that some schools sell their prospectus separately and if you have to buy that and the form, you obviously have to pay more. Therefore, nothing much should be read into these complaints,” Mallik told IANS.

The Delhi government Monday pulled up four private schools in the city for not following guidelines on nursery admissions.

“Acting on the complaints of parents, the education department has asked four private schools for a reply into the alleged irregularities in the nursery admission process,” an education department official said.

The education department Saturday warned 19 schools after receiving complaints against them.

However, Mallik said: “The government has no option but to warn schools when a few complaints come. But I don’t think these are very big issues and it is an easy process.”

Hundreds of thousands of children are expected to apply for admissions at the nursery level even as the number of seats are reported to be far fewer.

Filed under: Education

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