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Schools cry foul, DoE may tweak distance criterion

New Delhi, Dec 24, 2013, DHNS: 3:38 IST

Dept likely to extend limit to 10 kilometre for admission

The Directorate of Education might relent to an extent on its nursery admission criteria and extend the distance limit to 10 km from the six km cap specified in the recently announced guidelines, sources said.

The DoE is mulling over the new criteria that gives 70 points to kids due to the representations by private schools criticising the criteria, according to sources in the department. “If the DoE extends the limit, the sibling points and alumni points have to be capped,” the source said.

The private school associations have written to DoE that the guidelines are not balanced.
“The new guidelines are discriminatory to unaided private schools. We have not been given any say in the admission process,” said L V Sehgal, Principal of Bal Bharati Public School.

The private school associations have said almost all the children living in Kanjhawala and Bawana in north-west Delhi go to schools as far as Dwarka, Rohini and Pitampura — which are over six kilometres away.

“How will the new guidelines help these kids?” Sehgal added.

The NGO, who had challenged the earlier guideline, upholds these guidelines. “We were asked by the DoE if we have any problem with the extention of the distance criteria. We don’t have any issue,” said a member. “But what purpose will it serve?”

These are all gimmicks of the private schools to avoid the new children-friendly guidelines, he added.

“The new guidelines have ended the management quota which was used as an excuse to extract huge amounts from parents in the name of donations,” he said.

The All India Parents Association has also upheld the new guidelines.

“The new guidelines are in the spirit of the provisions of Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009 as well as in tune with the orders having been passed by the honourable Delhi High Court from time to time on this issue,” said AIPA.

The schools have been planning to move court. “We are not left with any option. We will definitely go to court,” said Sehgal.

The new guidelines — released on Wednesday last for 2014-15 session — give 70 points of the 100 to candidates who live within six kilometres of the school.
It abolished the 20 per cent management quota and the wards of alumni will get five points.

These guidelines even give five per cent reservation for girls.

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