Board Exams 2021 to be cancelled? (Image: PTI)
With over 11 lakh active cases of Coronavirus in India, most of the state boards, as well as national boards like CBSE and ICSE, are preparing to conduct the annual class 10th and 12th board examinations. Millions of students are eagerly waiting for an update regarding their board exams. While over one lakh students have signed an online petition for cancelling or postponing their board exams in view of the COVID-19 pandemic, on the other hand, a section of students is requesting the boards not to cancel the board exams.
CBSE has scheduled to begin the class 10th and 12th board exams from May 4. Millions of students are registered to appear for the board exams. However, many students and parents have tweeted to request the education ministry to either conduct the board exams online or postpone the exams for a month or two, considering the spike in the number of COVID-19 cases.
However, a CBSE official has stated that conducting the board exam online is not easy. Also, the board has been preparing to increase the number of exam centre to 40- 50% in order to maintain social distancing. Reiterating the decision of not cancelling the board exams, the official had said that the board is constantly discussing measures to protect the students from the Coronavirus.
On Friday, the deputy chief minister of Delhi, Manish Sisodia also stated that the Delhi government has advised schools to postpone their ongoing CBSE practical exams for class 10th and 12th students till at least April 20, in view of the rising number of Covid-19 cases in Delhi. All schools in the national capital have been shut in view of the COVID-19 pandemic. Delhi has recorded 10,732 fresh infections were recorded on Sunday taking the total number of cases to over 52 thousand.
Maharashtra State Board of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education (MSBSHSE) has scheduled to conduct the Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC) exam between April 23 and May 21. The Maharashtra Board Secondary School Certificate (SSC) exam will be held between April 29 and May 20. Around 30 lakh students are registered to appear for the Maharashtra Board exams 2021.
The state education minister Varsha Gaikwad had earlier announced to promote all the students up to class 9 and class 11 without conducting their annual exams due to the ongoing spike in COVID-19 cases. Moreover, the minister announced that she is also holding consultations with student representatives, elected representatives from all parties, tech giants, parents, teachers & other sector experts to cancel the annual board exams and promote the students following alternative assessment schemes. Students can expect a decision on board exams soon.
"In light of the recent upsurge of Covid-19 cases, I've been holding consultations with student representatives, elected representatives from all parties, tech giants, parents, teachers & other sector experts regarding alternatives for assessment of HSC & SSC board students. I'd like to assure all students and their parents that your safety is our foremost priority. We are reviewing the situation and a decision in this regard will be taken in the next few days, " the state education minister Varsha Gaikwad tweeted.
In light of recent upsurge of Covid-19 cases, I've been holding consultations with student representatives, elected representatives from all parties, tech giants, parents, teachers & other sector experts regarding alternatives for assessment of HSC & SSC board students. (1/2) pic.twitter.com/0LbnMv6aXu— Varsha Gaikwad (@VarshaEGaikwad) April 9, 2021
“Cancelling the board exam will not be a good idea as it involves future of the students and further delaying of the exam will affect the normal course of the academic year and stimulate unnecessary anxiety among students. However, in the current context, there is little option except delaying the exams keeping health and safety in mind,” Vivek Jain, Chief Business Officer, Shiksha.com said.
Leaving all the state boards behind, Bihar School Examination Board (BSEB) conducted the class 10th and 12th board exams in the month of February. BSEB has also declared the matric and intermediate results this year. Around 13 lakh students appeared for the class 12th exams while over 16 lakh candidates appeared in the class 10th exams in Bihar.
Moreover, the Kerala state board has also started its SSLC or class 10th and HSLC/ class 12th board exams on April 8. The Kerala Board exams were initially scheduled to be held from March 17 to March 30 but had to be postponed due to the Assembly elections. The class 10th board exams will conclude on April 29. The Kerala HSLC exams will conclude on April 26. Nearly nine lakh students are appearing for the exams across over 4,951 centres out of which4,46,471 students will attend the plus two exam and 4,22,226regular students and 990 private candidates will appear for the SSLC examinations.
The Uttar Pradesh Board has rescheduled the class 10th and 12th board exams. But, the postponement of the exam is not due to COVID-19. The decision to reschedule the board exams has been taken in view of the Panchayat Polls. UP Board exams that were earlier scheduled to begin on April 24 will begin on May 8. The UP Board Class 10th exams will continue for 12 working days and conclude on May 25. Similarly, the UP Board Class 12 exam will continue for 15 working days and conclude on May 28.