The Delhi government has, for the first time, fixed an upper age limit for admission to nursery, kindergarten and Class 1 in around 1,700 private, unaided and recognised schools in the national capital, according to a circular issued on Tuesday by its Directorate of Education (DoE). The admission process for these classes for the academic session 2019-20 will begin on December 15.
According to the circular, DoE has fixed an upper age limit of 4, 5 and 6 years as on March 31, 2019, for admission in nursery, kindergarten (KG) and Class 1, respectively. The minimum age for admission in these classes is 3, 4 and 5 years as of March 31, 2019 respectively.
In previous years, only minimum age was specified. With a cap on maximum age, children who could not get admission last year and have now crossed the age limit of 4 years will not be able to enrol in nursery.
They will now have to seek admission directly to kindergarten.
Schools have also been given autonomy to decide their own criteria for admission, and upload them on DoE’s website by December 14. But the directorate warned schools not to include 62 listed criteria that were abolished by the Delhi government in 2016, including parents’ education, profession, income, food habits, and written or oral interviews of both students and parents.
The directorate on Tuesday released the schedule for admission in the 75% general category entry-level seats available in the private unaided and recognised schools in Delhi.
The forms will be available on the websites of schools from December 15 and the last date for submission of forms is January 7, 2019.
The first list of selected candidates will be uploaded by the school websites on February 4, 2019.
The schedule for the remaining 25% seats reserved for the economically weaker section (EWS) and disadvantaged (DG) categories will be announced in the coming weeks.
The department also warned schools not to fix their entry level seats as less than the highest number of seats in these classes during the last three academic sessions.
“It was observed last year that some private schools had fixed lower number of entrylevel seats to avoid less EWS/ DG admissions in their schools. The department has warned the schools against it,” an official at the DoE said, requesting anonymity.
For the upper age limit, the DoE said it first made the announcement last year to give appropriate time to parents to plan the admission of their children. Last year, the court upheld the notification and allowed the DoE to implement it.
According to experts, the decision could particularly hit students from economically weaker sections.
“The upper age limit will not make any difference for general category students because they will not apply for nursery or KG at the age of 6. They must already be studying somewhere else. It’s more applicable for those seeking admission under EWS/DG category because they do not have many options,” said Amita Wattal, principal, Springdales School.
The department said it will also set up grievance redressal and monitoring cells in all districts to ensure “transparent” admission process.
The parents can take up their queries with these cells between February 5 and February 12, 2019.