Chandigarh, December 7
Ten minority schools in the city are on the Education Department’s radar over the failure to provide admission to students from the economically weaker section (EWS) as per the prescribed norms.
As the nursery admissions are underway for the 2024-25 session, the department has granted permission to the minority schools to conduct admissions for open seats (non-EWS), pending a resolution of the show-cause notice issued to them over “non-compliance” with EWS admission norms.
According to the Right to Education Act (2009), non-minority, recognised unaided private schools in the UT must allocate 25 per cent of seats for EWS/disadvantaged group (DG), while the minority schools are outside its purview. However, the UT schools are governed by the Capital of Punjab (Development & Regulation) Act, 1952, under which the minority, recognised unaided private schools are mandated to offer a minimum of 15 per cent seats to the EWS/DG.
Of 20 minority schools in the city, only 10 have adhered to the norms by admitting 15 per cent EWS students.
Last year, the department introduced a portal for centralised EWS admissions in private schools, aiming at transparency. However, some minority schools resisted joining the online portal, citing their missionary obligations. These schools prefer to admit EWS students exclusively from the minority community, avoiding the centralised online system.
Harsuhinder Pal Singh Brar, Director, School Education, stated, “If the decision (over show-cause notices) goes against these schools, they will be required to participate in the centralised admission system and admit 15 per cent EWS students.”
As per data, there are 1,825 seats in the entry-level classes at 20 minority schools. Of these, 275 (15 per cent) are reserved for EWS students and the remaining 1,550 are open seats. — TNS
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