Mumbai: More than 2,154 applications have been received for 320 seats of the first CBSE board Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) school at Poonam Nagar, Jogeshwari east, while there are 343 applicants for 320 seats at the ICSE board Mumbai Public School (MPS) school at Woollen Mill, Mahim.
Accordingly, the BMC had decided to conduct a lottery between March 26 and 28. But because of the coronavirus pandemic, the event is expected to be postponed to April. Mahesh Palkar, BMC education officer, said, “We want to conduct the lottery round in front of parents, so we might have to postpone it to next month, so as to avoid a mass gathering in the current scenario. We might conduct the lottery online.”
Currently, around 250 parents are undergoing counselling sessions at CBSE Jogeshwari school every day while documents are being verified at the Mahim ICSE school. Nisar Khan, an admissions officer at the school said, “We only have 320 seats, so we are talking to parents.” Jyoti Vakharia, a teacher managing admissions at Mahim school, said, “We are verifying documents and cross-checking all submitted information.”
According to teachers, parents are being asked basic questions like, 'Why opt for CBSE board?' and 'Will you be able to help students?'. A teacher conducting these sessions said, “We are spending around five to ten minutes with every parent just to understand their background, to give them an idea of the CBSE curriculum and gauge if they will be able to support their child throughout his or her education. We are giving preference to those children residing within a three-kilometre radius of the school.”
Teachers, education officers and staff involved in this MPS project of the BMC, have not been given leave due to the COVID-19 outbreak. “We have an April 1 deadline to start the academic year at CBSE school while the ICSE school is set to begin classes from June 15, 2020. We are working every day, talking to parents and scrutinising admission forms. We are taking basic precautionary measures like wearing masks and using hand sanitisers,” teachers said.