RTE just on Paper; the Poor are Still Turned Away

Even after the implementation of the Right to Education (RTE) Act, access to education has not become any easier for students from the weaker sections of the society.
Parents with an annual income of less than Rs1 lakh are lodging complaints with the education department against schools refusing to admit their wards in the 25% quota.

Abdul Karim Ansari, a parent and a tailor from Agripada, had lodged a complaint with the help of National Students Union of India (NSUI), states that St Joseph School, which falls within one kilometre of Ansari’s residence, rejected his application of admission. Ansari, whose annual income is Rs80,000 per annum, says that the school turned him away when he approached for his four-year-old daughter, Aasna’s admission in the junior KG under the 25% reservation quota.
“The school told me that the preschool section was private and not aided by the government. Hence they could not take my daughter in. I want admission in this school as it is only two minutes away from my residence,” Ansari said.
When contacted, the school authorities told DNA that they have not implemented the 25% quota in the preschool section as it unaided.A school authority said, “Our school is minority aided only from class 1 and hence we do not have 25% reservation for students of the junior and senior KG.”

However, according to officials in the education department, RTE is applicable at entry levels in the schools, even if those sections are unaided.

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