For the upcoming nursery admission season, most parents said they would prefer getting points for a school close to their house.
In a survey conducted on more than 2,000 parents, nearly 1,300 felt maximum points should be given to children who live near the school, i.e. in the neighbourhood.
The second most popular criteria was points for siblings with 19% of all votes.
Only 4.25% of the surveyed parents voted for sizeable points for children of alumni. Most schools give parents between 20 and 50 points under this category. The survey was conducted by admissionsnursery.com, a forum for parents.Nearly 15% parents voted that if a school gives points for alumni, it should also give five points for first child. Similarly, 9% parents voted in favour of equal points for sibling and first child.
"This trend shows parents who don't belong to Delhi and/or have just one child are very insecure about their chances. Most parents feel giving such high marks for alumni is wrong as it is discriminatory," said Sumit Vohra, founder, admissionsnursery.com.
Nursery admissions in Delhi are overseen by the Directorate of Education, which issues broad admission guidelines related to admissions. While schools are given a free hand in deciding what the points system should look like, they are barred from asking the parents' income, profession and educational background.
"For anyone who is new in the city, getting their child into a half decent school is impossible. Other than the criteria for neighbourhood, no other criteria seems fair to us," said Radhika Khanduri, who works with a consultation firm in south Delhi.
In a number of schools, points for sibling and alumni account for 50% of the total points.
Principals, however, have their own reasons. "There are parents who have studied in the school and now want their children to go to the same school. We have an obligation to them. As for the suggestion that there should be equal points for sibling and first child, it can certainly be looked into," said Usha Ram, principal, Laxman Public School and member of the National Progressive Schools Conference.
The nursery admission guidelines are expected to be declared by the first week of December.