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'Students will suffer'

For the third consecutive year, junior college admissions have been caught up in litigation. With admissions on hold, parents and principals fear that the academic year will be cut short and studies will be affected.

mumbai Updated: Jun 11, 2010 01:15 IST
Bhavya Dore

Students, parents and college principals expressed concern about junior college admissions getting delayed.

On Thursday, the Bombay High Court told the state government that it could not begin junior college admissions without its permission. Hearing a clutch of petitions filed by parents of students studying in Indian Certificate of Secondary Education (ICSE) schools in Mumbai and Pune challenging the government's 'Best-Five' policy for Secondary School Certificate (SSC) students, the court asked the government to file its reply within a week. The next hearing is on June 18.

The petitioners labelled the government move to count all seven subjects for ICSE students while counting only five top-scoring subjects for SSC students for junior college admissions as"unfair".

The court's intervention has brought hope to ICSE students."I can only decide on whether to continue in school or go to junior college once the court decides. I hope ICSE students get a fair deal," said Anushka Dattagupta, a student.

Principals said a court case, for the third consecutive year around junior college admissions, will mean trouble for students."In any case, this is a short academic session. Now it looks like it will be even shorter," said Dr Kirti Narain, principal of Jai Hind College at Churchgate."It will affect studies; we won't be able to begin until all admissions are over."

“The Best-Five policy was announced a long time ago; the petitioners should have raised this issue then," said Nikita Antony, a Class 10 student awaiting her results. Parents, too, said the timing was wrong."Every year there is a 45-day delay in admissions. Students will suffer," said Jayant Jain, a parent."Can the government reply? They are saying they have no software to aggregate ICSE students' marks, so admissions will be further delayed."

The government had announced the Best-Five policy in February after inviting suggestions and objections from the public."Why are ICSE students' parents saying the policy is unfair? They should tell their board to give them a best of five subjects' average," said Sanjeevani Vichare, whose son is awaiting his SSC results.