Kerala: 60k additional plus one seats for 2023 admissions, but no new batches

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Representational Image | Photo: UNI

Thiruvananthapuram: In order to address the shortage of plus one seats in Kerala, the capacity of classes will be increased across the government, and government-aided private higher secondary schools in 10 districts. Around 65,000 additional seats will be available for the academic year.

The cabinet has approved a 30 percent rise in marginal seats in government higher secondary schools and a 20 percent rise in such seats in aided schools in Thiruvananthapuram, Palakkad, Kozhikode, Malappuram, Wayanad, Kannur, and Kasaragod districts.

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The seats in government and aided higher secondary schools in Kollam, Ernakulam, and Thrissur districts will increase by 20 percent as well.

An additional 10 percent rise in seats will be allowed in aided higher secondary schools on request.

The 81 temporary batches allotted in the 2022-23 academic year will continue. The 18 science batches, 49 humanities batches and 8 commerce batches retained in the previous academic year will also remain functional.

Total plus one seats

With the increase, the total number of plus one seats will be 4,23,315. A total of 4,17,864 students passed the SSLC exam this year. The number of candidates for plus one will increase when CBSE, ICSE students and those who clear SSLC SAY examinations are added.

According to minister V Sivankutty, 33,030 VHSE seats, 9,990 polytechnic seats, and 61,429 ITI seats are also available in the state. This is besides the 4,23,315 plus one seats.

No new batches

However, the demand for increasing the number of batches in the Malabar region for solving the shortage of seats has been rejected by the government citing the financial burden. It may be noted that permanent teachers have not yet been appointed for the 58 batches introduced across 51 schools in 2014-15.

Critics argue that the total number of seats in the state must not be the criterion to conclude that all students clearing class 10 will be accommodated as there is a "huge disparity" in available seats in the Malabar region. They argue for a "taluk-wise reality check" and new batches to address the shortage.

Committee recommendations overlooked

An expert committee appointed by the Kerala government had found that there is a requirement for around 200 additional batches in schools across the districts of Palakkad, Malappuram, Kozhikode, Kannur, Wayand and Kasargod. The committee headed by professor V Karthikeyan Nair also suggested that converting high schools into higher secondary schools would attract more students. There are 30 schools in Malappuram identified for the same.

The committee spotted that there are 50 higher secondary batches across the districts of Thiruvananthapuram, Pathanamthitta, Alappuzha, and Kottayam which have been experiencing shortages of students for 3 years. It suggested reorganising such batches to meet the requirements of students in other districts.

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