Mumbai schools finally confirm admissions of RTE students
The breakthrough came after the BMC sent a copy of the High Court order to schools and issued them a notice, telling them to either follow rules or face action
After hitting many hurdles this year, there is finally some progress in the online admissions procedure under the Right to Education (RTE) Act. Following the intervention of the Bombay High Court, schools are finally confirming admissions of students who were allotted seats in the first and second rounds of the admission process.
After the education department completed the two rounds of online admissions, hundreds of students were still without seats, despite over 7,000 seats lying vacant under the quota. “We had submitted a list
of close to 370 names of students who were allotted seats, but the schools had refused to confirm them.
For the longest time, there was no progress, but now things seem to be moving in the students’ favour,” said Sudhir Paranjpe, member of Anudanit Shiksha Bachao Samiti. In the past week, after the BMC sent a copy of the High Court order and issued a notice to schools telling them to either follow rules or face action, many schools in Dharavi, Kurla and Sion confirmed admissions.
Worries don’t end
However, parents now have another worry. Some schools are charging these kids for uniforms, books, etc. which, according to RTE rules, should be provided for free. “The rules clearly state that education and other expenses have to be taken care of by the school.
What is the use of providing free education to children if their parents are asked to shell out money for miscellaneous items,” asked Paranjpe. His NGO has decided to take up the matter with officials to make sure that schools follow the rulebook. When mid-day spoke to senior officials from the education department of the state, they were confident that all admissions would be completed before September 20.
“All admissions will be completed and students who applied through the online process have already been asked to get in touch with their allotted schools,” informed an official. Asked about the practice of taking money from students for other expenses, officialsconfirmed that according to the Right to Education Act, schools are not allowed to do so. The education department conducted the third round of admissions last month, and is hoping to clear the backlog soon.