Doha: Indian parents in Qatar who are running from pillar to post for admissions for their children have some relief as a few schools are being given permissions to increase their capacity. Pearl School West Bay campus is the latest school to get permission from Ministry of Education to increase class-wise seats for new students.
Pearl School announced on March 14 that its West Bay campus has been given permission. According to officials there are approximately 20 to 58 seats in different grades (from class 1 to 7). We are not sure if the seats are still available as there is huge demand for admissions to lower grades especially KG classes.
Prior to this DPS-MIS was given the permission for 100 sibling seats. The school had invited parents to apply for younger brother or sister of a child already studying in DPS-MIS. An online link was opened for parents at 9 am and within two hours the link was unavailable as the allotted seats were already filled.
Securing an admission in an Indian school this year has been very difficult for parents as two of the biggest schools were told to stop admissions since they already have students on their rolls beyond the permitted capacity.
The MES Indian School and the Ideal Indian School has more students on their rolls than the permitted capacity of students.
The other Indian schools are smaller in capacity and most of the seats were filled in by the sibling quota itself.
Shahabuddin, Principal, Shantiniketan Indian School has said earlier that they had closed admission for KG 1 after receiving more than 600 applications. “We have four divisions for KG1 and in each class we can accommodate 30 students. It means we can take only 120 students as per the regulatory body’s directives,” he said, adding that a permanent solution to the problem lies in opening new community schools.
Ministry of Education and Higher Education has said that six new Indian schools were given permission to start operation. It is not clear when these schools will start their admission as till now there is no announcement indicating the same.
As the admission season draws to a close, worries of parents who have yet not succeeded in getting their kids admitted in any school are aggravating. The new academic year in Indian schools is set to start from April.
Not only perturbed parents, the officials of various Indian schools think that the short-term solution to the shortage problem lies in the launch of classes in two shifts (morning and evening).
“The number of existing community schools cannot serve the current population of Indian expats and therefore the viable solution at hand is the launch of two-shift classes,” said AK Srivastava, Principal of Birla Public School.
He said that to address the problem of school admissions, they had floated the idea to the authorities at the Ministry of Education but the move could not bear fruit in the past. “It is still the immediate solution to address the shortage of schools. With the available infrastructure and hiring separate staff, the schools can launch a second shift of classes because establishing a new school demands huge resources,” Srivastava noted.
Indian schools are the preferred option among the Indian expats as the fee structure is much more affordable than International schools and moreover if they have to shift back to the home country it will be easier for the kids to assimilate as the curriculum followed in schools in Qatar is same as the one followed commonly all over India. So getting an admission in India becomes easier and it also ensures continuity for the children.
Many concerned parents are writing in to The Peninsula to know the list of new Indian schools as announced by the ministry. The list is not available as of filing this report.
Six new Indian schools to open next year
Call for two-shift system in Indian schools