Parents scramble for nursery admission forms
on Day 2
winter chill, thousands of parents Tuesday morning queued up for
hours outside schools across the capital on the second day of sale
of forms for nursery admission. Hopping from one school to
another, scrambling for forms
New Delhi: It's that
time of the year when thousands of anxious parents stand in
serpentine queues outside popular schools in Delhi, just to pick
up a nursery admission form - the sale of which is expected to
fetch a revenue of Rs.1,200 crore for these institutions.
Despite efforts by the government and activists to ease the
anxiety, little seems to have changed this year for parents who
complain of expensive prospectuses, lack of online forms and the
points-based admission criteria.
"When I reached at 8 a.m. Thursday, there were 50 people in front
of me. I thought it had been four days and the queues would be
shorter, but I had to stand there for three hours," said Vinay
Rathi, who had taken a day off from work to collect forms from
Many popular schools in Delhi said they sold twice the number of
registration forms Thursday compared to the previous days since
admissions opened Jan 2. The children have to be at least three to
be eligible for admission.
"We have over 150 seats that we offer each year at the nursery
level. After three days of sale of admission forms, we have given
about 800 forms under the economically weaker section (EWS)
category, and 1,800 forms under the general category. Such is the
demand," R.K. Sharma, principal Ahlcon Public School in Mayur
Vihar, told IANS.
Sharma said there were only a few schools in Delhi compared to the
There are about 4,500 schools in Delhi and NCR, of which over
2,000 are unaided private institutions which are preferred by
parents over government-run ones.
Many parents also complain that all schools distributing forms
simultaneously makes things difficult for them as the forms are
available only for a couple of hours every day.
"It would be nice if the forms could be collected online as is the
case with a handful of schools," Soudamini, a parent, said.
The principal of a popular school advises that parents should
apply to less well known schools and not just run after the
"Parents need to relax and consider schools beyond the popular
ones," the principal of a school in west Delhi said pleading
But Sumit Vohra, who started a website nurseryadmissions.com after
fighting to get his daughter into school, says the process is
always stressful for parents.
"Every parent randomly applies for about 30 schools in the city;
even then they are not able to get a seat just because of this
points-based system," Vohra said.
Under the points-based system, an aspirant is awarded points for
various criteria decided by the school such as proximity to the
home, parents being alumni and siblings already studying in the
"My son lost out last year because I studied in a government
school, while most good private schools gave a lot of weightage to
the children of alumni. My son doesn't fall in any other category
either - like single parent and having a sibling; so the chances
seem very bleak this year too," says Sharbani Gaur, a resident of
Vohra also added that many schools also flout the Delhi
government's order not to force parents to buy the prospectus.
"Several schools force parents to buy the prospectus along with
the admission form despite protests by parents," he added.
While an admission form costs Rs.25, prospectuses vary from school
to school from Rs.100 to Rs.200. Some prospectuses cost more than
those of Delhi University and the Indian Institutes of Management.
According to industry lobby Assocham, leading public schools in
Delhi will be earning a revenue of Rs.1,200 crore through the sale
of nursery admission forms this year.
"They can have one single form for all schools. This is mere
commercialisation just to mint money from parents," said Ashok
Aggarwal of the NGO Social Jurist.
As per guidelines issued by the Directorate of Education of Delhi,
the forms will be available till Jan 16, and the entire process of
admission will have to be completed by March 31. The schools will
have to publish the first list of selected candidates by Feb 1 and
second list by Feb 28.
(Prathiba Raju can be contacted at email@example.com)