Poor children desirous of joining schools under the RTE Act’s 25 per cent quota have a reason to cheer. There will be 15 days time in May every academic year, instead of seven days at present, for the issue and submission of application forms seeking admission to schools under the legislation, thanks to a Madras High Court order on Wednesday.

The court directed the authorities to extend the time limit fixed in a G.O. of April 1 last year for issue and submission of filled in application forms between May 3 and May 18 of every academic year. Order to this effect should be issued within four weeks. The School Education Secretary was directed to ensure that the Act and rules for filling up the reserved quota were complied with.

The court passed the order on a PIL petition by social activist A. Narayanan. He submitted that in the G.O. of April 2013, only a week’s time from May 3 of every academic year had been given for admitting children under the Act. Counsel submitted that fixing a week’s time was not sufficient for submitting the forms. In the seven days, two days will be holidays.

Sufficient time should be given. The intention of the enactment was to provide education to children of illiterate parents belonging to the weaker sections and disadvantaged groups.