As there has been some confusions/misunderstandings prevailing in the issue of online applications for admission of children to (preferred private) schools under RTE (Right To Education) Act, the public has demanded for some extension of the deadline for applying.
The state government of Tamil Nadu has ordered that all the private schools must reserve a 25% quota for the students from the poorer sections of society under the RTE Act.
Subsequently, the admission of students under this 25% quota in all the private schools has commenced throughout Tamil Nadu.
Though certain private schools have offered admission under the 25% quota, complaints have been received that the school authorities indulge in asking for fees on various issues. Complaints have also been received that this 25% quota is not being implemented properly by several private schools.
In this situation, an announcement was made on the official website of the Tamil Nadu State Government Education Department that admissions to LKG classes for this new academic year will be conducted for the children born between 1st August 2014 and 8th August 2015.
However, there have been misunderstandings/confusions on the birth dates mentioned in the above announcement. Especially, online applications could not be done in case of children born in July2015.
Two persons, Stalin and Ramjit, from Pollachi, could not admit their children who were born in July 2015.
Applications for above admissions can be sent from the government E-Service Centres, Offices of Primary Education, Office of the District Education and the office of the Welfare Development Circles. However, due to the confusions on the online process, parents were being moved around in these offices. They could not apply anywhere.
In this scenario, the personnel from the Federation of the Student, Education Rights accompanied the parents to the Pollachi District Education Office on Thursday (Yesterday, 16th May) and recorded their complaints on this issue.
As the explanations given by the officials were not satisfactory, they blocked the District Education Office.
When contacting the Chennai office of the State Education Department through the toll-free number 14417, it was explained that applications can be done only children born between 1st August 2015 and 8th August 2015. The parents were rather shocked to receive this explanation. The original announcement had asked for applications from 23rd April to 18th May.
In this scenario, due to the confusion created on the online application procedure, there e is a situation where several students cannot avail this facility under the RTE Act. Hence the public has demanded that the deadline must be extended and also the confusions/misunderstandings on online procedures must be resolved.
While neither resolving this confusion nor giving a deadline extension, they have now announced on Thursday evening (16th May) that the children born between 1st August 2015 and 8th August 2016 will be taken for admission.
It has been announced on the official website of the Department of Education on Thursday that applications can be sent for the children born until August 2016. The main reason is that the age of the children born on 8th August 2016 will be only 2.75 Years. (2 years and 9 months).
As per the government regulations, only children above the age of 3 can be admitted in schools. In this situation, the website of the Education Department has announced admissions for children of the age of 2 years and 9 months only (under 3)! An issue has been raised whether this is valid!
Kannucchamy of the Federation of the Students Right To Education, shared in this regard:
`When entering the birth date of the children as required, it does not get registered! When enquiring the Education Department Officials, they asked to contact the Chennai Office. When contacting the Chennai Office, they give some contradictory news! With this, the admission of thousands of children throughout Tamil Nadu has been disturbed. As only 2 days remain as per the original announcement, we demand the extension of deadline till the contradictions are resolved by the Department of Education.`
The Primary Education Officer Murugan of Coimbatore District shared that `the online issue has been resolved on Thursday, 16th May. The applications already submitted for children born in the year 2014 will not be affected. However, as regards the prevailing confusion, he informed that only Chennai must be contacted!`