MUMBAI: Colleges across Mumbai are facing a peculiar problem. After promoting all students to higher grades, they are posed with a challenge of excess students and not as many seats.
Mumbai University’s solution? Stuff all additional students in existing divisions, ignoring per class capacity or student-teacher ratio, and bar external students once the sanctioned intake is reached.
Most colleges affiliated to Mumbai University have maximum seats in their first year. The college capacity reduces as several factors are at play during natural academic progression: Low retention rate and drop-out, failure and migration. But this year, with all students being promoted, there is no space in higher years of degree colleges to accommodate so many students.
“Many college principals wrote to Mumbai University regarding the problem of in-house students. As all students were promoted, most colleges did not have as many seats in their second and third year to accommodate their own students,” said Association of Non-Government Colleges chairman T A Shiware.
Most large colleges usually have five to six divisions in the first year. But class population falls as one advances to higher years. “In the second year, colleges’ student capacity often reduces by a third. To increase divisions, institutes need to apply to the state government. This year, as all students were promoted, the problem of more students and fewer seats was faced by almost all colleges,” explained Shiware.
On Saturday, Mumbai University issued a circular asking colleges to admit all eligible in-house students, even if they are “in excess of sanctioned intake capacity”. Director of board of evaluation and exam, Vinod Patil, clarified: “Students must be admitted within the divisions sanctioned, such that there is no increase in workload or rise in demand for additional staff. No additional staff will be sanctioned for additional students admitted.”
Faculty members said, “Class capacity is very high already. Now MU is asking colleges to take all additional students in existing classes. How does that not increase workload? By not sanctioning additional faculty, they are expecting us to have more students per class,” said a BUCTU member. Students also felt that with colleges exceeding sanctioned intake, migrating to a better college would not be possible.
Courtesy – THE TIMES OF INDIA