Well, a few years back I did not think about this at all; never cared about it. When people used to tell me this is a big deal I never cared to ask why. But, last year when I started to do the research I started to understand that this is something that is going to be difficult than my school examinations. However, what this was going to be like I had no clue.
January 1, 2011 is when the ordeal started for Preeti (my wife) and me. The first two weeks it was all about understanding the different criterion that the school had set. My gosh!! every school had a different criteria. If there were two schools next to each other, in one school the points we were getting were around 60 and the other we had just 10 points. Well to brief it all, some of the common guidelines were:
- Points for Neighborhood: The closer you are to the school, the higher points you score
- Points for Sibling: If you had an elder sibling in the school you were preferred and you would get a higher score
- Points for Alumni: If your parents passed out from that school you get higher points
- Points for Girl Child: Boys were foresaken for some reason that is beyond my understanding
- Points for Single parent: Somehow it felt that being happily married was a curse
By Jan 3rd, we had realized that our house was in a location which did not any good schools close by. One of the best locations to live in Delhi suddenly became the worst for us. Nevertheless, we went ahead and selected 15 schools and applied for admission for our beloved daughter. While she enjoyed her time, Preeti and I were going through a nightmare.
Jan 15th came and last date of filling forms was done. Now it was time for schools to pour out the results. Some of the best schools announced that all parents who did not have an elder child already in the school or were not an alumni should not even bother looking at the result. Well, those schools were not that good in the past. And, even if they were, should we hold our parents responsible for not putting us in those schools – our hearts were feeling the pain and my parents were sharing the same with us.
On Feb 1st all the schools were to display the results; this was the D-day. Jan 31st, I was unable to sleep the whole night. I remember I was not this worried during my class 10/12 exams and even graduation. Finally on Feb 1st, my daughter was lucky enough to have her name listed in one of the schools with a confirmed seat and in another school under wait list. I had to sit down on the bed when I answered my mobile from the school as they told me that my daughter has been selected and I have to come and deposit the fee.
Now, I read that many parents are left hanging with no schools for their kids. They have no options to wait for the 2nd, 3rd list or find ways to pay some money to the schools. When I think of them, I have a guilty feeling that some kids wont be able to school while my daughter will go. even when this is how it is supposed to be and I had no hand in any of the process all along; but being a spectator.
I do not understand what the government if going to do about this, but this is so wrong. On one side, we talk about providing education to everyone, while on the other hand the process is such that many are left hanging with no where to go. Not right; just not right.