LIVING CLOSE to a school might fetch you high points for your child’s admission in nursery schools but it won’t guarantee you a seat. The Indian Express looked at criteria and cut-off points for admissions at some schools and found that unless an applicant has a sibling in the same school, is the first child or a girl child or has parents who are alumni, distance alone won’t help.
Nursery admission process in Delhi schools is based on a points system. Schools usually assign points to each criteria — neighbourhood (distance from school), sibling in the same school, parents as alumni and girl child/first child. They then set a cut-off mark to select names for a lottery. The final names are selected through the lottery. Most schools, however, give most weightage to the neighbourhood criterion.
At DPS, Vasant Kunj, for example, 40 points (out of 100) are given to those who live within a 1 km radius. For the sibling criterion, 30 points are awarded, alumni’s children get 20 extra points, girl child and single child, 5 points, and single parent, 5 points.
Last year, at DPS Vasant Kunj, the cut-off to pick names via lottery was 55. So, even if a parent lived within 1 km of the school, the child wouldn’t have made it even to the lottery stage unless he had 15 more points.
The story is almost the same at most other schools. Last year, Ahlcon International School in Mayur Vihar assigned 40 points to children who lived within a 3 km radius. But the lottery cut-off was at 65. “If parents have points only for distance, they will not make the cut for the lottery,” said Ahlcon International School principal Ashok Pandey.
Schools such as Vasant Valley School, Springdales School and The Mother’s International School, too, have a similar system.
“In our school, about 10 seats out of 50 go to alumni children,” said Ameeta Wattal, principal, Springdales School, Pusa Road.
Khagesh Jha, the petitioner in the nursery admissions case in the High Court — where the Delhi government has said schools built on government land will give priority to children within a 1-6 km radius — said that the previous admission process was unfair as those who lived close to the school were denied admission.