The UT Cadre Education Employees’ Union has asked the department to reserve 85 per cent government school seats in Class XI for Chandigarh students only.
Citing the example of Panjab University, which has a 85 per cent admission quota for UT students in all courses, president of UT Cadre Educational Employees’ Union Swarn Singh Kamboj said: “If PU can implement a reservation policy for students of Chandigarh, why the same cannot be ensured for Class XI students in government schools? Meritorious students from states like Punjab and Haryana rush for admissions to the government schools in the city. As a result, many students who have been studying in the city are allotted schools in the periphery regions, which is unfair.”
Some teachers in the city also believe that not having a reservation policy tends to affect the quality of education in the city. “The absence of a reservation policy not only affects the standard of education in the city, it also proves to be disadvantageous to students who are studying in Chandigarh. The education department must issue some policy in this regard,” a teacher from GMSSS-22 said.
At present, admission to government schools in the city is conducted on the basis of merit. Students are allotted schools and courses on the basis of their score in Class X CBSE examinations only.
The existing reservation policy only allots 15 per cent of the seats for Scheduled Castes, 2 per cent for students under the sports category, 3 per cent seats to physically challenged and five per cent seats are reserved for children of defense/paramilitary personnel. Also, 2 per cent seats are now reserved for children and grandchildren of freedom fighters.
Deputy director of schools Chanchal Singh said: “There is no policy that mandates reservation for students from Chandigarh at city government schools. Admission is done on the basis of merit only.”
For now, the education department has stated that no such policy is likely to be implemented in the near future.
Earlier this week, a city resident had also complained to the Chandigarh Commission for Protection of Child Rights against the centralised admission process for Class XI students in the government schools.
Referring to a Supreme Court order for admissions, the complainant said that students should be given admissions in government schools on the basis of proximity to the school from their residence.
“In the present system of centralised Class XI admissions, students are being given admissions on the basis of merit without considering the proximity of their residence to other government schools. Even if the stream of a student’s choice is available in his/her own school, the student might just be allotted with a school in the periphery or villages,” the complainant said.
The education department, however, then clarified that the order of the SC was applicable only to private unaided and aided schools.
Education officials said admissions to Class XI in city government schools will continue to be done on the basis of merit only. “The process of centralised admissions does not deny admission to any student. It only gives them seats in schools on the basis of merit. And the Supreme Court does not have anything against merit,” Singh said.
A total of 16,267 admission forms have been sold till date and the city government schools have received 10,615 filled forms ones already. Approximately 13,000 seats are available for admissions to Class XI across 40 senior secondary government schools in Chandigarh.