March 14, 2012
“Quota for pre-primary class impermissible”
Calling to attention shortcomings in the admission guidelines circular issued by the Delhi Government for pre-primary/Class 1 in Sarvodaya Vidyalayas on February 27, non-government organisation Social Jurist has written to the Delhi Directorate of Education demanding that the matter be looked into immediately.
“The Delhi Government is violating the Right of Children to Free & Compulsory Education Act, 2009 (RTE Act, 2009) for admission to Sarvodaya Vidyalayas. In our letter we have highlighted that in Sarvodaya Vidyalayas reservation has been made for Scheduled Caste candidates (15 per cent), Scheduled Tribe candidates (7.5 per cent), physically handicapped (3 per cent) and 2 per cent seats for the wards of employees of the Directorate of Education, 1 per cent for the wards of ministerial staff and 1 per cent for teachers' wards,” said advocate Ashok Aggarwal of Social Jurist.
This reservation of seats is impermissible under the provisions of RTE Act, 2009, said Mr. Aggarwal.
“The circular raises several issues. We want the Delhi Government to explain what are the exceptions to the right of every child seeking admission in neighbourhood schools and when every child has a right to education in the neighbourhood schools, then where is the scope for reservation for SC/ST/PH and wards of teachers/ministerial staff of DOE etc?” asked Mr. Aggarwal.
The group has also questioned why the reservation is limited to SC/ST/PH and wards of teachers and ministerial staff and does not cover OBC, children belonging to disadvantaged group and children belonging to economically weaker sections.
“Section 3 of the RTE Act, 2009, provides right to every child from 6 to 14 years for free and compulsory education in neighbourhood schools till the completion of elementary education. It appears that your Education Department while issuing this latest circular failed to look into the provisions of the RTE Act, 2009,” said Mr. Aggarwal.
The NGO has demanded that all children be considered for admission to pre-primacy/Class I in Sarvodaya Vidyalayas without any discrimination based on caste, class, creed and religion or place of birth, etc., and no child be denied admission and that the circular be modified accordingly.