As three-year-old Rohan Sood ran around his home in Saket, he was oblivious to the tension at home.
With the dreaded nursery admission season approaching, parents Sneha and Anubhav Should have not slept well for many nights. They are busy scouting South Delhi schools and short-listing those where they are likely to make it.
Going by last year’s confusion and chaos, their best bet would be to apply to as many schools as possible.
According to the Delhi Directorate of Education (DoE), there are 1,185 unaided public schools and 221 aided public schools recognized by the directorate. Moreover, there are 759 unaided schools recognized by the Municipal Corporation of Delhi.
But despite the presence of so many schools, many parents failed to get admission in a school of their choice last year. Reason? Neighbourhood criteria meant that popular schools were restricted to certain pockets of city.
“Everyone wants to send their children to good schools. Last year, many parents even moved to the vicinity of good schools but still couldn’t manage to get admission,” said Shilpi Jain, a parent who went through the rigour last year but failed to get her son
For instance, Springdales Schools at Pusa Road and Kirti Nagar have 90 and 60 seats, respectively, for Nursery.
Between them, they received over 6,000 applications in 2007. The junior branch of DPS, R.K. Puram, received 6,000 applications for 160 seats. In Sardar Patel Vidyalay (SPV), 3,000 applications were received for 70 seats. Most of the old established schools get a large number of applications and have to fall back on the elimination process.
“We have a tradition of giving weightage to alumni and siblings. So automatically a lot of applications get rejected. This year too a lot of parents will be distressed,” said Ameeta Wattal, principal of Springdales,
The same is the case with DPS R.K. Puram. “A good chunk of the points are given to alumni, siblings and neighbourhood. So parents should keep these in mind while applying,” said Shyama Chona, principal.
This means that parents who have not studied in the established schools will be left high and dry this year too. Add to that the various quotas in schools — minority status, SC/ST, economically weaker section, etc.
“After the Supreme Court upheld a Delhi High Court ban on interviews for parents and children, we thought the admission process would become easier. But the point system recommended by the Ganguly Committee has complicated things further,” said Sumeet Singh, another parent.
“There is so much confusion regarding the age of child. Schools are bringing out forms on different dates and it is very difficult to keep track,” he added.