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Chaos over RTE admissions : Officials visit schools to resolve deadlock

At some schools, the problems were successfully addressed.

Written by Alifiya Khan | Pune |
August 25, 2015 2:30:31 am
RTE admission, admission, school admission, RTE school admission, PMC, PMC education, pune news, indian express The parents of students who were denied admissions under RTE outside PMC education board office on Monday. (Arul Horizon)

With many schools refusing to grant admissions under the 25 percent reserved quota for the economically weaker sections under the RTE Act despite the High Court orders, the education board office-bearers along with the education officers and the police paid a visit to such schools on Monday.

At Bhawani Peth’s B T Shahani Navin Hind School, two children weren’t allowed to appear for Marathi exams last Saturday. Parents of the two children, Vijay Salve and Jayant Galpe, told a team of PMC education officers who visited the school that the management had been demanding that they pay the school fees, even though their children were admitted under the RTE quota. “We had even agreed to pay fifty percent of the fees, but they didn’t agree. On Saturday, they pulled the children out of a class of 40 students and said they could not write exams as their parents had not paid the fees,” said Salve.

Though principal Jayshree Chetwani wasn’t present at the school, Dhananjay Pardeshi, deputy education officer, said school staffers had accepted their mistake and said the issue arose since the school had not got RTE reimbursements. “However, no school is allowed to pull out children over reimbursements. Also, despite repeated reminders, this school hasn’t submitted relevant documents which is why reimbursement is stuck,” he said.

Another incident occurred at Kothrud’s Millennium School. A mob of at least 200 protestors gathered before the school, demanding RTE admissions. After the school refused to comply, the protestors went to the education board office and forced education officer Baban Dahiphale along with the PMC school board members to visit the school. While the school principal and the senior management didn’t meet the team, they conveyed through the PRO and another officer that they had already given requisite admissions under RTE at pre-primary level and refused Class I admissions.

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“But the High Court order has said that the January 21 GR and subsequent GRs are valid, allowing dual entry point as well as filling up of the backlog seats for schools that did not give RTE admissions from 2012-2013,” argued Dahiphale. Later, things got heated up and the police was called in. The parents and the education board officials threatened to file contempt of court complaints. The school officials said that they were prepared for all eventualities. So, it was decided that the education board would file a police complaint and the parents would file another.

At some schools, the problems were successfully addressed. The Tree House School management claimed that they didn’t have space for new classrooms and were asked to meet the PMC school board office to resolve the issue, said Noordin Ali Somji, vice-chairman of PMC school board.

At Bhartiya Vidya Bhavan’s Paranjape Nursery School, Nandkumar Kakirde, secretary of the trust, said that he could allow 38 admissions and not 75. “It’s impossible for us to start two new divisions now, you can close our school if you wish,” he told PMC officials.

The last stop for the day was Kothrud’s New India School where at least 10 to 12 parents complained that the school was refusing RTE admissions. “No directors were present in the school, but the PRO told us that they would follow the High Court orders,” said Somji.

Meanwhile, Pardeshi said that besides the schools where officials paid visits, complaints against many others had come in. “Some parents showed a letter by Seva Sadan School saying they had written to the education commissioner and on its basis, they had refused admissions. Parents complained that Sinhagad’s Dnyanganga School management took documents for admissions Saturday and returned these Monday, refusing admissions. As the deadline (August 27) to complete round I nears, we are expecting more complaints,” he said.

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