The admission season is still several weeks away, but discussion and debate over the admission policy of St Stephen's College have started already. And it has started with a critique of last year's admission procedure by faculty members. Miffed with the manner in which guidelines were formulated and 'proclaimed' in 2008, teachers of the institution have unanimously recommended changes to the admission policy at a staff council meeting held on April 28. The most significant recommendation comes in shape of a suggestion of having at least 50 % of seats earmarked for the merit category as against 40 % last year. Last year, 50 % of the seats were reserved for Christian students, 40 % for merit category and 10 per cent for SC, ST and physically challenged students. 'In my opinion, it's a wrong statement to make, if you are not going to admit even half the class on the basis of merit,' said a teacher requesting anonymity. In the minutes of the meeting (a copy of which is with HT) teachers have also advocated for the margin between cut-offs for the general merit and the reserved category to not be more than 15 per cent except for sports and physically challenged students.
'The recommendations were made based on our experience of teaching students admitted as per the 2008 policy. Last year, in a few departments the cut-off margin for Christian candidates was more than 15 %. Teachers found that such students had problems coping with the rest of the class,' said a teacher requesting anonymity. The reduced weightage of 10 % for interviews, too, came under the scanner and was recommended for revision. According to teachers it should be reinstated to 15 % as per 2007's policy as Board marks are not a true indicator of the student's aptitude as far as a few subjects are concerned. The recommendations of the staff council will be placed be fore the Governing Body during its next meeting tentatively scheduled on May 11.