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Parents lose sleep in admission season

- DAV schools top preference list of those seeking to admit their kids in nursery

Bhubaneswar, Feb. 19: Parents are losing sleep over their kids’ admission to the nursery sections of top schools here.

The admission process is complete in some schools while in others it is still on. A large number of parents are keeping an eye on DAV schools that are yet to announce the application dates.

The DAVs are expected to begin their nursery admissions in mid-March after the Supreme Court delivers its judgment on the proposed three-fold fee hike in these CBSE schools, most likely in the coming week.

“Fee hike controversy or not, the DAV schools are considered to be among the best in the city. Which parent wouldn’t like to admit their children in the best school?” said Isha Panigrahi, a homemaker who stays in Pokhariput.

Like Isha, many parents are regularly making rounds of the four DAVs here with admission queries.

The selection in these schools is done on the basis of a lottery system.

“I have heard that getting admission in DAV is difficult without any reference or clout. Though my daughter has attended pre-school and can make a good impression during the interaction with school authorities, I am prepared to shell out as much money as the management may demand,” said H.R. Bhuiyan, a businessman.

The admission fee in the DAV schools, each of which have around 180 to 200 nursery seats on offer, ranges between Rs 25,000 and Rs 30,000, with the academic session generally commencing in mid-April.

There are 40 DAVs in the state, including four each in Bhubaneswar and Cuttack.

The DAVs have categories for admissions — 25 per cent for special categories, 50 per cent for general candidates, 20 per cent under school management’s discretion and five per cent for children of staff and alumni.

However, parents are opposed to the large number of seats coming under discretionary quota.

“When the school already favours its staff and alumni by setting aside seats for their children, why have 20 per cent seats under discretion?” said Kasturi Samal, a parent.

DAV, Chandrasekharpur, principal K.C. Satpathy said he personally did not approve of a discretionary quota. “Discretion often leads to corruption,” he said.

Many other schools are conducting admissions on the basis of first-come-first-serve, home-to-school-proximity, alumnus and sibling status.