The first attempt to streamline the nursery admissions in Delhi was made in 2007, when the Delhi High Court-appointed Ashok Ganguly Committee laid out guidelines, giving weightage to several factors such as neighbourhood, sibling, etc.
Till now, the guidelines have broadly guided almost all changes that have been brought in by the government, schools or by way of litigation. Therefore, it is imperative on the parents that they understand the points system and decide their strategy accordingly. They should check which school follows what criteria and then apply to the ones where they have the maximum chance of securing a seat for their children.
Most schools allocate maximum points for neighbourhood -- the distance between a school and an applicant’s house.
Nursery admissions in the national capital will begin Monday. While around 1,400 schools will fix their own criteria, 285 schools built on DDA land may have to follow only neighbourhood rule. The schedule and guidelines for the schools on DDA land are yet to be announced by the government.
Principals say that maximum points are allocated to the neighbourhood criterion to ensure students from the areas located near the school should get priority. For instance, Delhi Public School, Mathura Road has kept 60 points for neighbourhood -- the distance for which is set up at 7 km.
“For the alumni category, in case both parents or one parent is from the school, 15 points will be awarded. For first child or girl child, there is 15 points and for sibling there is 15 points,” said Manohar Lal, principal of the school.
Parents prefer sending the younger child in the same school where the elder one is studying. Almost all schools award 10-20 points for this criterion.
“I have two daughters and I want them both to go to the same school. It is safe to send them together in the same school bus. Plus I am familiar with the school,” said Tamanna Sharma, a resident of Gandhi Nagar.
Most schools keep points for children of their alumni. “Alumni have a certain connect with the school. They prefer sending their children to the school because they know about the quality of education and the history of the institution,” said a principal, who did not wish to be named.
Although government had abolished the management quota last year, the high court allowed some schools to keep the criterion while observing that they are entitled to autonomy in administration.
The government had last year abolished 51 criterias for being unfair, unreasonable and non-transparent. Some of these criteria are parent’s education, non-smoker parent, oral test and interview. A lot of these considerations were prevalent even before the Ganguly panel’s recommendations came into play.
“Parents should know what these categories are and understand that no school can assign points to them,” said Directorate of Education official.