A native of Firozabad in UP, the girl (name withheld on request) was admitted to school earlier than other children her age. “Her grandfather and father are both from the academic sector and thought she was a very bright child and so admitted her to Class III ahead of time. She has been able to cope with academics with help from her father and has performed extremely well,” said a relative.
Students are usually 16 years old in the first year of junior colleges.
With a score of 85%, the girl secured a seat in the arts stream of the college through the centralized admission process and has been attending classes since a month now. “When the student came to us, we gave her admission but it will be on a provisional basis. She is attending classes. Whether or not she can appear for HSC will depend on the board granting her eligibility. Being a women’s college, we will provide her with all the support,” said principal Ananda Amritmahal. Students who have completed Class X from a board other than the Maharashtra State Board of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education are required to get an eligibility certificate from the divisional office.
Meanwhile, the girl is taking Mumbai travel in her stride. She currently lives in Goregaon with her relatives and uses the train to commute to her college in south Mumbai. “She takes the train from Ram Mandir to Grant Road and she has been able to do that very comfortably. Her parents are confident that she will be able to handle college even if she is younger than the rest of the class, which was why they sent her to Mumbai. They wanted the best education for her,” he said.
Board officials said there wasn’t a minimum age criterion to appear for the SSC or HSC examination. “The requirement for HSC is that the student must have attended high school but there is no age requirement. We haven’t had such a case before but she will be eligible to appear for the board exam if her documents are in order,” said Subhash Borse, secretary of the state board’s Mumbai division.
Rajendra Ahire, deputy director of education, too, said there was no minimum age limit for students to take admission in FYJC.