Mumbai: Around 2.91 lakh applications have been received for the Right to Education (RTE) admissions against 1.15 lakh vacant seats in 9,331 schools of Maharashtra. Of this, 14,132 applications have been received for 7,069 available seats in 367 schools in Mumbai. Parents who have applied will receive a SMS by March 20 as the lottery process to allot seats is underway.
Under the Right to Education (RTE) Act, students from economically weak sections can seek free and compulsory elementary education from Class 1 to 8 in private unaided schools.
Around 25 per cent seats in these schools are reserved for students. Parents can apply online for RTE admissions, seats are alloted through a lottery round and parents are notified via SMS.
Currently, amidst the coronavirus outbreak, the lottery process is going on. Mahesh Palkar, BMC education officer, said, "The RTE admission process has been delayed this year as we were supposed to conduct the lottery round in February.
We cannot delay the process further as it will affect the academic lives of children. We are currently conducting lottery rounds and will notify parents as soon as possible."
This year, applications have outnumbered the availability of vacant seats, according to the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) education department.
A civic education official said, "We are currently conducting the lottery process. Due to the large number of applications, we are expected to finish the process by March 20. Parents will be notified during the process."
On being allotted seats, parents need to visit respective schools and submit documents. Lakshmi Pednekar, a parent, said, "We appreciate the effort of the BMC to conduct the lottery process amidst the COVID-19 outbreak."
While, Faiz Qasi, another parent, said, "The number of applications under RTE have been increasing every year. The civic body should increase the number of seats in order to suffice the rising number of applications."
In 2019, out of a total 1,24,530 students who were allotted seats, 76,909 completed their admission procedure in 9,195 schools in Maharashtra. While 47,621 students were unable to complete the admission process.