‘Neighbourhood’ criteria that carries 70 points increased from 6 to 8 km

The “new,” nursery admission guidelines released by the Lieutenant-Governor’s office a few days, was amended again on Friday.

According to the new guidelines, admissions will continue to be done on the 100-point basis but children living within an 8 km radius will now be included in the “neighbourhood,” criteria which carries 70 points. Grandchildren of staff members will also be entitled to a five per cent quota which was earlier extended only to the children.

In the guidelines released on December 18, admissions into nursery schools had to be done only on the basis of four criteria like, “neighbourhood up to 6 km (now increased to eight), sibling studying in the school, parent alumni in the school and inter-transfer case.” The Right to Education Act has been extended to these admissions.

“The parents we interviewed were especially upset of the short distance of the neighbourhood measured since there are many pockets in Delhi which do not have schools. Also, siblings who were in a school and admitted with a further distance were also at a disadvantage,” said Sumit Vohra, who runs the admissionsnursery.com service.

The school managements were also upset at the neighbourhood criteria while the NGO which had initially challenged the earlier criteria in the Court felt that the fears of schools were unfounded since there were enough schools in the city, according to their survey. They too, however welcomed the change: “It still emphasises the fixed criteria and the management quota still remains scrapped, so we welcome it,” said Khagesh Jha, an activist of the NGO.

The total number of seats for admission to a class for children below six will still be divided into four parts. Out of this, 25 per cent of the seats have to be reserved for the economically weaker section and disadvantaged group, five per cent for the wards and grandchildren of the staff/ employees of the school. The unfilled seats will spill over to open seats. Five per cent will be for the girls’ quota which will have to be divided according to a draw of lots for girls residing within a 6 km radius. In the event that seats remain vacant or unfilled through these quotas, then they can be allotted based on the draw of lots.

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