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HindustanTimes Sat,26 Jul 2014

School violates RTE norms by not admitting new students

Deepa Sharma Sood, Hindustan Times  Ludhiana, May 23, 2013
First Published: 21:20 IST(23/5/2013) | Last Updated: 21:21 IST(23/5/2013)

Not even a single student has been admitted to classes 6, 7 and 8 at Government High School, Khud Mohalla, Block 2-B, here this session. Reason? The school doesn't have enough teachers to cater to more students. Notably, there is no other co-educational government school in a 3-km radius.

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The school reportedly had received queries from more than 20 parents, who wanted to get their wards admitted to the school, but not a single admission took place in violation of the RTE Act. The last date for admission in government schools was May15.

Hindustan Times in a report on April 26 had highlighted that the school had only one Punjabi teacher, who taught all subjects to 45 students enrolled in classes 6, 7 and 8. It was in defiance to the Right to Education Act, as per which the pupil-teacher ratio should be 30:1. On May 9 again, HT reported that the said school was not admitting new  students.

Education minister Sikander Singh Maluka at that time had told HT that no child could be denied admission in a government school, as it was a violation of the RTE Act. “I will ask the district education officer (elementary), Ranjit Singh, to submit a report regarding this matter, and ensure that every interested child gets admission in the government school,” the minister had said. On Thursday, when this correspondent tried to contact Maluka, he was unavailable.

District education officer (secondary) Paramjit Kaur Chahal, said, “This school is under Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan and not under me as it's a middle school and the high school has been shifted to Kotmangal Singh.”

One of the parents, Heena Rani, said, “I have admitted my daughter to a government school, which is about 5 km away from my house. So it is difficult for us to drop her to school. The neighbourhood school concept has been defeated. I wanted my daughter to study in a co-educational school and there is no co-educational government school in a 10-km radius from our house.”

District education officer (elementary) Ranjit Singh was not available for comments.

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