The Archdiocese Board of Education (ABE) has decided to restrict the intake capacity of the schools under it to ensure imparting of quality education, as well as restrict overburdening of the teachers
The Archdiocese Board of Education (ABE) has decided to restrict the intake capacity of the schools under it to ensure imparting of quality education, as well as restrict overburdening of the teachers. As per a decision by the ABE from academic year 2016-17, the 150 ABE schools in the city will admit upto 40 students per division at the entry level rather than the 60-70 students they admitted previously.
Speaking about the decision, Fr George Athaide, secretary of the ABE, said that various factors contributed to cutting down of the intake capacity in the schools regulated by the board. “The missionary-run schools were primarily set up with a view to provide affordable education for students from the Catholic community and children living in the vicinity of the schools. However, with the students from the Catholic community making up 7-8 per cent of the total students, it was decided to reduce the intake capacity and concentrate on improving the quality of education,” said Fr Athaide.
On being asked about the shortage of seats that would result due to the decision, Fr Athaide said, “Providing school education is the prerogative of the state government and the ABE schools are contributing towards providing education to the masses. The decision to cut down the intake will divert students to government-run schools that are closing down due to shortage of students.”
Fr Jude Fernandes, principal of St Mary’s SSC School at Mazgaon, concurred with the views of Fr Athaide and said that reduction in the intake capacity would pose a major problem for the schools initially. “We have received around 750 applications for admission to junior KG, but as we have reduced our capacity from 120 to 80 we have to turn away most of the applicants. Admitting more students has an impact on the quality of education and we hope that by doing so we will provide better education. If the government feels that we should continue admitting more students then we should be permitted to increase the divisions,” said Fr Fernandes.
The decision of the ABE is also in line with the clauses of the Right To Education (RTE) Act that stipulates that each class should have not more than 40 students to ensure that the teacher is able to give equal attention to each student.