Nursery children
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No nursery admission will be double whammy for EWS students, say parents and experts – education

With the Delhi government contemplating skipping kindergarten admissions at the next academic session in light of the Covid-19 pandemic, many parents hoping to enroll their children, in the reserved category of the Economically Weak Section (EWS), expressed his concern that his pupils could lose the opportunity to obtain a “quality education”.

Under the Right to Education Act (RTE) 2009, 25% of seats will be reserved for EWS / Disadvantaged Group (DG) category in entry-level classes (Nursery, KG, and I) in all private schools.

HT had reported on December 24 that Delhi government officials confirmed that the government was considering skipping admissions at the entry level next year in light of the pandemic situation.

Amit Kumar, who works in a store in Lajpat Nagar, said that his daughter (5) was not admitted this year by a private school despite her name appearing on the list of selected candidates issued by the Directorate of Education (DoE) . “The school said they can only accept it when they get admissions to more general categories. His admission is still pending. In case you don’t get admission this year and the enrollment process doesn’t happen next year, what will you do until 2022? No one in my family is educated to teach you at home. We can’t even afford to enroll her in any other private school in the general category, ”he said.

Another father, Ajay Sharma, a farm worker from JJ Prasad Nagar (Molarband extension), said: “I have never been to school, but I want my two children to have a good education. This year my two sons (6 and 5 years old) had applied to the nursery classes and 1 to the EWS category. None of them could be admitted to any private school. In case the admission process is not carried out next year, both will exceed the upper age limit to enter these classes by 2022, “he said.

In accordance with the regulations, the upper age limit has been set at 5, 6 and 7 years for admission to kindergarten, KG and Class 1, respectively, for EWS / DG students.

The admissions process under the EWS / DG was already interrupted this year due to prolonged school closings amid the pandemic. According to data provided by the Department of Education, more than 17,000 of the 50,000 (approximately) positions available at EWS / DG in 1,700 unaided private schools remain vacant. The DoE has extended the last admission date to December 31.

A senior official from the Department of Education said: “Many schools have also kept many students on the waiting list as their general category seats in these classes are also vacant. The schools enroll students in the general and EWS categories at a ratio of 3: 1. Many low-budget private schools have experienced a drop in admissions due to the pandemic situation this year. ”

Experts said the proposal to skip admission next year will affect EWS students the most. Ekramul Haque from the NGO Mission Taleem said: “Admissions under the RTE law are the only way to get better and equal educational opportunities for poor children. If the government decides against admission in 2021-22, a whole group of poor students will be deprived of the free and compulsory education to which they are entitled. The government must take this aspect into account before making any decision ”.

Advocate Ashok Agarwal, president of the All India Parents Association, said: “What happens if schools reopen in June or July? General category parents can enroll their children in private schools in neighboring Noida and Gurgaon. But where will poor children go? Parents are completely opposed to this government proposal ”.

A senior government official said any decision regarding admission will be made after consulting with all stakeholders. “The government will take the advice of all stakeholders, including schools, parents and experts, before making any decisions.”

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