The Maharashtra state commission for protection of child rights pulled up 17 prominent schools in Mumbai and Pune on Tuesday for denying Class1 admission to six-year-old twins belonging to scheduled caste under Right to Education (RTE) Act quota.
The commission, which was hearing a complaint filed by the twins’ parents, said schools should not deny admission to students from weaker sections into higher classes. ‘’If the schools receive application from eligible students between Class 1 to 8 under RTE quota, they cannot turn them away," he said.This is against the latest state government notification directing schools to admit students only at the entry level.
The Navi Mumbai couple, who refused to be named, had told the commission they began applying on December 25, 2012, to schools such as DAV Nerul; Activity High School at Peddar Road, Walshingham School at Napean Sea Road, Queen Mary School at Grant Road, Greenlawns School at Breach Candy, Cathedral and John Connon School at Fort, Bombay Scottish School at Mahim among others.
Their complaint said most schools denied admission saying they were implementing 25% RTE quota only for admission to nursery classes -- the entry level -- according to the state’s notification. Others said they did not have any vacancy. Only Activity High School sent a written reply to the parents. ‘’The parent wanted admission to Grade I. In our school, the RTE quota is for nursery only,’’ said a representative of DAV School, Nerul.
Secretary AN Tripathi said the commission will soon come out with a detailed order on admitting students to higher classes. However, NB Chavan, deputy director of education, Mumbai, said the government would not give reimbursements to schools for any other class. “If we keep a 25% quota in every class, where will the other students go?” he said.