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School Admissions

Had heard of it many times that the most important decision after marriage is choosing the right schools for one’s child…the situation has been the target of satire by many on the TV and Movies…where people have been suggested to apply for admission either at the time of birth or even before that!!!

Now since I have not yet made the first difficult decision of choosing a person to spend my entire life with … question of selecting a school should not have arrived. But as in my life things never go in any particular manner I have just been witness to the admission scenario in one of the elite schools of NCR.

One of my friends had to go for the first round of interaction of the admission procedure and as unfortunately the husband was traveling so I offered going with her.

The entire thing was an experience … first of all seeing her prepare her son for the interview…making sure that he is properly fed and dressed and is at his best behavior… (doing the same for her own self could also be seen!)… then reaching the school after braving the heavy continuous downpour and somehow managing to finds a parking space.

Till now I was on a familiar ground but once we reached the gates of the school it was a completely different ball game. Schools always remind me of my school time and make me nostalgic… there is this feel about schools which I find same everywhere … that smell of playgrounds… the no worry attitude of children… the busy bee nature of teachers…the row of classes… silence near the principal’s office etc. But all this I had seen like a student and thus with a different perspective and now I was on the other side… n it sure did change the view…

Inside the school there were scores and scores of parents with their tiny tots…with worry and concern on the faces of the parents and curiosity and in some cases fear on the faces of children. A colorful sight it was… and u can imagine with more than 1000 parents and around 500 odd children … the place was active and buzzing.

We reached there in time and were guided to a particular block and then this room which had registration numbers of 30 children. Every block and room was properly marked and there were signs and symbols to help the parents. Once in the room… we were asked to check our registration number and forms and get a name tag for our child. This tag was pinned on to the child’s dress. We were then asked to sit down patiently as a teacher came in and collected the children and took them to a different room for initial interaction. Some children were Bond and went away waving to parents while some other decided to show their emotional attachment and proved difficult. All in all after some crying and persuading by both the parents and teacher all the kids did go away.

Dunno if it’s right or not but I felt some mothers sighing a relief!

After that a question paper was handed out to all the parents and though there was no time limit and no pressure of negative marking silence fell over the room. There was anxiety all around as people started filling out the paper and mostly it was the fathers who were writing while the mothers were prompting and telling.

Now about the question paper…it had some 50 plus questions… of all sorts… MCQ’s…Spot the correct option…Tick the most appropriate one…small descriptive answers…imagine and answer … hypothetical, real situations…and some factual questions. It was one exhausting paper…testing u on all soft skills… knowledge of current ways of parenting…ethical and moral values and much more.

To me it looked like a psychometric test done without MBT and 16 question format with a lot on stake!!!

People kept on writing and writing … ensuring nothing goes amiss…some even called up their parents to check their qualifications and experience! All in all it was an examination hall with a difference … where success was going to be the ingredient for future of some one else… their children.

It was a normal process for teachers as they have been doing it for years and hence did not get ruffled by crying children or fussing parents… they just went on doing their job. What was interesting to see was that at least one of the parent in each couple was acting like a school kid… raising hands… saying yes mam… n looking expectantly at the teacher while their other half was the confident and self assured one not giving away their anxiety.

Within half hour the children, one by one, started coming back looking happy… seeing them parents increased their pace of writing and finished the paper sooner and left the rooms with their individual bundle of joy… praying that their answers meet the acceptance level, hoping that their child gets enrolled in the school while wanting to know what all did their child do hoping that he/she scored the goal too…

The results would be announced in a fortnight or so … but the parents can not relax as they have to get ready for another interview and yet another similar day … full of anxiety, concern, nervousness and hope…

Categories: Trivia
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