Nagpur | Schools question education department’s directive on RTE admissions

Nagpur: Tempers flew high at the office of Child Welfare Committee (CWC) where hearing of certain city schools, education officials and aggrieved parents was held on Monday. After receiving complaints about denial of admission to kids under Right to Education Act (RTE), the CWC sent summons to 10, mostly CBSE, schools along with other stakeholders. Four CBSE schools from the city threw the rule book back at the education department and questioned the basis on which it directed schools to admit students at two different entry points.

Parents alleged that schools were refusing admission to their wards even though they had been selected in the online draw conducted by state education department. A group of parents told the CWC chairperson Anjali Gawande that schools were admitting only in nursery even though the lottery was done for Std I. When Gawande asked the education officials whether schools were informed or directed to comply, the reply was in affirmative.

Anil Pardhi, deputy director of education (Nagpur division), said, “Education officers had given all information in writing. Schools had been directed to give admissions to students as per the government resolution issued earlier.”

Shahid Sharif, who heads an NGO focusing on RTE, said schools were not following education department’s orders. “We had to approach you (CWC) because we are concerned about the welfare of children. Their academic future is unsure because school season is starting in a month and they have nowhere to go,” he said.

The four schools, Bhavan’s (three city branches together), Delhi Public School, Sandipani (Hazaripahad) and Modern NEERI countered the complaints logically saying it was logistically impossible to admit 25% students in pre-primary as well as primary. One of the principals said, “If we admit 25% in each then it is effectively like setting aside 50% quota for RTE.”

Bhavan’s, which was represented by its legal team, questioned how it had got summons based on allegations by parents. “Not even a single parents’ name and their grievance list has been provided to us,” said their representative. The next CWC hearing will now be held on May 22.

Source: The Times of India

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