RTE admissions in Maharashtra at a standstill
The date of the second RTE lottery is yet to be declared; Committee’s sloppy work is creating hurdles
Pune: With schools set to reopen, more than 50 per cent of the admissions under the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act for this year are still pending.
While several parents had faced glitches while filling the RTE application forms being unable to mark the location of the home address on Google Maps, the State Education Department had given another chance to the parents to make changes to their locations. However, several extended deadlines later, there is not much increase in the number of admissions, activists have pointed out.
“Hardly 100-150 admissions have increased in the past two weeks. So, I don’t think the parents have benefited truly from the provision. And one of the most important reasons behind the delay in the admissions’ process is the committee appointed by the Education Department to verify the parents’ documents. Even now, the sloppy work of the committee is hurdling the admissions’ process,” RTE activist Mukund Kirdat said.
This year, for the first time, the Education Department appointed a committee to verify the documents, as the schools were known to be declining admissions to parents by giving the excuse of false documentation.
However, Kirdat has added that if anything, the committee has added to the misery of the parents.
“We have not yet received any official notification regarding the schedule of the second lottery. However, since the deadline for making changes to the application forms ended on June 11, I think we might start the process for lottery soon,” said Pune Municipal Corporation (PMC) Education Officer Shivaji Daundkar.
While many schools under the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) have already reopened for the new academic year, many others including those under the State Board will soon reopen by mid-June.
“Many parents have no option but to pay the extra money and take admissions for their children at schools as regular students. There are many who cannot even afford to do that and they can only wait for the lottery result,” Kirdat added.
“It is the same story every year. Despite having one of the highest numbers of seats under RTE, hardly 10,000 get filled in the Pune every year, all because of the delays in the process and the mismanagement by the Education Department,” he further said.
He also stated that the figures of admissions shown on the website are of those parents whose documents have been verified by the committee and not of those admitted to the schools.
“The picture is going to be very unclear this time. Many parents, whose documents have been approved, are stuck. So, we do not really have the exact numbers of actual admissions that have taken place,” Kirdat said.
When Sakal Times contacted Joint Director of Education (Primary) Dinkar Temkar for details on the status of the second lottery, he said that he will give information on the same in the next ‘two-three days’.