Despite HC's order, Mumbai schools still deny admission under RTE
The fate of 350-odd students, who were denied admission by schools under the Right to Education (RTE) admission process, is still uncertain, even after Bombay High Court ordered the BMC and school education department to confirm their admissions.
According to the affidavit filed by the BMC, around 7,259 seats are still lying vacant under the RTE reservation quota
It has been more than a week since the order was passed, but only 15-20 admissions have been confirmed, while the remaining students are still sitting at home, waiting for authorities to take action against schools who have refused. “We had provided the BMC a list of around 370 kids, who were allotted seats in schools under the online admission, which was not honoured by their schools.
After continuous follow-up, we found out that only 15-20 children have been admitted in two schools of Andheri, but there has been no development from schools in Sion and Dharavi,” informed Sudhir Paranjpe, an activist heading Anudanit Shiksha Bachao Samiti, which had filed the petition in high court against the school education department and the civic body.
According to Paranjpe, Parle Tilak Vidya Mandir and Angel Land School in Andheri have admitted the students, but the remaining 350 kids are still waiting for their confirmation. The academic year started on June 16 and most schools are currently preparing for the first unit test exams, which these students would be missing.
“It is unfair that these students don’t have a school to go to because of lack of coordination,” he added. The final hearing on the issue will be held at the High Court today. “We know that the final judgement will be in favour of the children, who deserve to go to schools,” said Paranjpe.
“As soon as we received the court order, we had sent out notices to every defaulting school and are still in the process of gathering information about how many students are still waiting for their confirmation. We are constantly in touch with authorities of Maharashtra Knowledge Corporation Limited (MKCL), who are looking into the process, to ensure all students get admitted to schools at the earliest,” said Shambhavi Jogi, BMC education officer.
The online admission, which began in April, received over 7,000 applications in two rounds for 8,223 seats. While the admission process was completed in June, and the BMC’s education department was confident that every student was admitted to the schools, in their affidavit to court, it was revealed that barely 964 seats had been filled under the RTE quota. This means that around 7,259 seats were still lying vacant. The court had ordered the civic body to first give importance to students who were allotted the seats but the schools did not confirm their admissions.