Kerala

Class 1 admission: no decision on raising minimum age to six

No decision has been taken to revise the minimum age for admission to Class 1 in the State as six years, say government officials.

At present, the age of admission to Class 1 for all schools in the State is five years.

Officials say a decision on raising the age of admission to six years can be taken only in the overall context of the State stance on implementation of the National Education Policy (NEP). The NEP, instead of the current 10+2 structure, follows a 5+3+3+4 structure starting from age three with education in the 3-8 age group coming under the foundational stage. However, no discussion has been held on the matter.

The Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan has revised the entry age for Class 1 to six plus with effect from the 2022-23 academic session, leading to protests from parents and people’s representatives.

However, as per a government order issued in 2012, to have parity and uniformity in the age of admission to all schools in the State, the provision of Kerala Education Rules will continue to be in vogue (that is, the age of admission to Class 1 shall be five years for all schools in the State) until the Kendriya Vidyalayas controlled by the Union government switch over to age six as implied in the Right to Education Act.

A year later, the government issued another order clarifying its stand, and directed that status quo of five years for enrolling students to Class 1 be maintained till further orders.

Since the government has issued no new notification regarding the change in age, the Kerala CBSE Schools Managements’ Association has decided to retain five as the age of admission to Class 1 this academic year.

Most schools have completed admission for the 2022-23 academic year, and increasing the age of admission to six years cannot be implemented all of a sudden, says association president T.P.M. Ibrahim Khan. Moreover, where will the thousands of students who have completed UKG go if they are denied admission to Class 1, he asks. CBSE schools alone cannot implement the decision for they stand to lose students if State schools continue to follow the five years’ stipulation.

As per the current pre-school structure in the State, UKG is completed by age five and students go on to enroll for Class 1.


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Printable version | Apr 24, 2022 11:53:09 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/class-1-admission-no-decision-on-raising-minimum-age-to-six/article65156700.ece