Third round of RTE receives poor response | mumbai news | Hindustan Times
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Third round of RTE receives poor response

Out of 891 allotments, only 75 students confirmed their admissions by Monday, which was the last day for admissions.

mumbai Updated: Sep 13, 2016 14:17 IST
Puja Pednekar
A total of 9,664 seats — 3,359 in pre-primary and 6,305 in Class 1 — were available under the quota this year.
A total of 9,664 seats — 3,359 in pre-primary and 6,305 in Class 1 — were available under the quota this year.

The third round of admissions to reserved seats for students from economically and socially weaker sections received a poor response. Of 891 allotments, only 75 students confirmed their admissions by Monday, which was the last day for admissions.

These seats are reserved under the Right to Education Act, 2009, at entry-level in 318 unaided and non-minority schools. Students do not have to pay school fee till Class 8 and government reimburses the schools in return. A total of 9,664 seats — 3,359 in pre-primary and 6,305 in Class 1 — were available under the quota this year.

Although the first round conducted in May saw better response than last year with 2,050 students securing admissions out of 3,411 allotments. The response petered out in the second and third round as the admission process got delayed. Only 373 students from 1,618 allotted took admissions in the second round as it was held in July after the schools already started their new academic year instead of June.

Education officials attributed the drop in takers to students taking admissions elsewhere on their own.

“Just a few parents waited until now to take admission and hence many of the allotments aren’t finding takers. Students must have taken admission without the quota and already begun the academic year,” said Sanjeev Darade, education officer, Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) that conducts the admission.

Nisar Khan, block officer, said that the delay in the last two rounds was unavoidable. “When we began the second round, schools went on vacation and so couldn’t update the admissions. We had no choice but to wait for them to reopen,” said Khan.

He added that the fake income certificates scam and other reasons also prevented some schools from admitting students. “It took time to convince schools and clear all the pending admissions and that dragged the process for lot more days,” said Khan.

But activists said that the delay has deprived eligible students of the quota. “It is almost the end of first semester and the BMC has not concluded the admissions. Parents can’t keep their children out of school due to the delays. Also, several schools have turned away children which is against the law but the department does not seem to take action against them,” said K Narayan, Anudanit Shiksha Bachao Samiti, a non-government organisation that helps students in applying for RTE seats.