In support of denial of admissions to over a thousand students in Class IX in its schools, the Government of NCT Delhi has come up with a stand that not only sounds akin to a ‘sons of the soil’ policy, but goes one step further in treating students even of unaided private schools recognised by the GNCTD itself, as outsiders.
The Directorate of Education, GNCTD, through ADE (School), in its reply to a letter written by Advocate Ashok Agarwal, National President, All India Parents Association, condemning denial of admissions to over a thousand students in the garb of admission test, has stated that they are facing a “huge crunch” of space and “finding it difficult to adjust Non Plan students”.
These “unplanned” or “unwanted” children of the city are mostly those having cleared Class VIII from schools outside Delhi and migrated to Delhi under some compelling circumstances or those who have cleared Class VIII from private recognised schools of Delhi but unfortunately their parents can no longer bear the rising burden of private school fee. Running from pillar to post, these children have been virtually disowned by the State on the ground that they were never planned for. Planned or not planned, the fact remains that there are over a thousand children presently in Delhi who have been forced to drop out and sit at home after Class VIII as the Delhi Government schools have refused to admit them citing “space-crunch” and they cannot afford to study in private schools.
On 25.04.2014, the Directorate of Education, Government of Delhi, came up with a Circular mandating that Class IX admissions to students other than those having passed Class VIII from Delhi Government schools shall be given on the basis of admission test. Thereafter, admission tests were conducted on 02.05.2014, 23.07.2014 and 19.08.2014.
However, over a thousand children who were either not aware of these tests, being from outside Delhi, or not permitted to appear on technical grounds or otherwise failed to qualify any of the tests, are now free to sit at home or contribute to the already vast army of child-labour in the city.
Ashok Agarwal, Advocate