Parents association welcomes HC ruling on nursery admissions

New Delhi, Feb 14 (IANS) The Schools and Parents Association here on Tuesday hailed the Delhi High Court’s order on nursery admission guidelines set by the Arvind Kejriwal government while the authorities said they would appeal against the ruling.

The high court on Tuesday stayed the Delhi government’s nursery admissions notification that compels 298 private schools, built on public land, to adopt only neighbourhood criteria.

The notification issued by the Department of Education made “distance” the primary criterion for admission of tiny tots.

The government said that transparency in admissions should not bother uncorrupted schools, adding that it would appeal to the High Court double bench or the Supreme Court.

“We will appeal to the high court double-bench. If required, we will approach the Supreme Court. Schools that are not corrupt, should have transparency (in the admission process),” Delhi Education Minister Manish Sisodia told media persons here.

For the All India Parents’ Association, schools and parents, the decision was appropriate as these guidelines were in reality “unreasonable”, as suggested by the court.

“I have to admit my 3-year-old daughter to school this year. There are no good schools within a radius of 3 km in my area. If I want to get my kid admitted in a better school, the government guideline would be a hurdle,” a 35-year old parent from Old Delhi told IANS.

“…This decision of putting the government guidelines on stay is very good,” she said appreciating the judgement.

According to the All India Parents’ Association, the Delhi government made the guidelines without following the law and order and thus, the decision of the court was perfect.

“It caused so much of confusion and parents were unnecessarily harassed. They had to fill the school forms twice — once going by the schools and another one going by the government,” association President Ashok Agrawal told IANS.

“I don’t oppose the guidelines or the neighbourhood criteria. Their guidelines were good but the procedure of formulating them was not,” he said, adding that “they should have taken the right steps”.

President of the Action Committee of Unaided Private Schools, S.K. Bhattacharya, who filed the petition against the government guidelines also hailed the decision.

“We never wanted the government to participate in the autonomy of private schools. The criteria of admission should be decided by the schools,” he said.