Indian schools in Oman report record number of admissions

Oman Sunday 09/April/2017 22:53 PM
By: Times News Service
Indian schools in Oman report record number of admissions

Muscat: A record 4,800 seats have been allotted to new students for academic year 2017-18 by the Board of Directors for Indian Schools in Oman, through an online draw system.
“It’s a record allotment, because this year the number of applications was very high compared with previous years,” said Wilson George, Chairman of the Board of Directors for Indian Schools in Oman.
George cited the closure of some schools and increasing confidence of parents in the Indian education system as the main reasons for the high number of applications received this year.
He also pointed out that the community was very anxious about whether the Board would be able to accommodate as many students. “We are very happy that we fulfilled our commitment to the community and a lot of people, including individual schools, admissions team, and the board worked very hard, and so I would like to thank the people who supported us,” said George.
On the strategy adopted by the Board to accommodate the increase in the number of students, George elaborated that they increased the afternoon shifts in some schools, created more sections, and increased the class sizes in rare cases. “We had approvals for some schools for afternoon shifts, and we took approvals for other schools as well. We created additional seats for afternoon shifts and some new sections in the morning shift, wherever possible. Certain schools have been utilised to their full capacity.
“Although Indian School Al Seeb (ISAS) had approvals for the afternoon shift, we had not been utilising it, as we did not have enough numbers to start. This year, however, we are utilising that approval, and will be starting an afternoon shift there.
“In Indian School Al Mabela (ISAM) also, we had very limited afternoon shifts, but this year we will be increasing the number of shifts,” Added George.
About the increase in the class sizes, George explained, “That has been done as the last resort, as we already have 40 plus children in many classes. We did that in some higher classes, as creating additional classes and afternoon shifts for them was not feasible, so we increased class sizes instead.”
In some cases, candidates had to be satisfied with their second or third choice schools, as well, “We try our level best to accommodate everyone in their first choice, but sometimes that is not practical. Some parents had to go for second or even third choice options.”
Although statistics show there has been an expat exodus, George says that he has not seen an excessive demand for transfer certificates (TC). “In the beginning, we were expecting fewer applications, because of expats leaving; however, we have not experienced an excessive number of TC requirements.”
In the first random draw held in mid-March, 3,485 students were allotted seats for various classes. The online application portal will go live again for fresh admissions for all classes from today (April 9). Parents seeking admission will have to submit the duly filled online application form to their school of choice. Admissions will be granted based on availability of seats.
The new Indian School at Al Ansab, which is expected to become operational in 2019, will help ease congestion at the existing schools and reduce the burden of parents whose children are currently studying in the afternoon shifts.