Industry body Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Ficci) has urged the Centre to cancel the CBSE Class XII Board Exams and declare the results by mid-July based on internal assessments of schools with support from external experts.
Ficci president Uday Shankar has written to highlighting the need to cancel the offline examinations and how “once in a century pandemic calls for an out-of-the-box solution”. Shankar has also mentioned that delayed exam schedule will derail the higher education calendar and may mar the foreign university aspirations of at least 500,000 Indian students.
This move comes in a day before the CBSE will officially take a decision on conducting the examinations. The Supreme Court is also hearing a petition by parents on Monday that is requesting cancellation of the exams amid the second wave of the coronavirus pandemic. Last Sunday, majority of the states had supported a truncated board exam option suggested by the CBSE but few states including Delhi and Maharashtra had opposed any physical exam in the current atmosphere.
The Covid cases graph is still on the higher note, in fact, double than the peak of last year. This has led to the closure of schools and colleges. As such, the current situation is not conducive to conduct physical examination and holding online examination is impractical given the lack of infrastructure; most importantly, any further delay will lead to distress among students. Amidst this backdrop, FICCI strongly suggests that Class XII board examinations should be called off and an alternate solution should take the country’s academics forward, the Ficci president has written.
The CBSE should consider the whole year’s marks secured by the students during the course of their academic year and assign appropriate weightage in order to arrive at the marks for each student. “A review committee headed by the Principal of the respective school should be formed at the micro level which shall also include two external education experts apart from assigned teaching staff to prepare fair and unbiased results of the students, which should be in sync with the historical performance of the school,” the Ficci president said.
It, however, has advised that if a “significant number of students are not satisfied with the internal grades, the government may consider giving them an opportunity to sit for an exam to be held at a later date when the situation improves”.
Dr. Chandrasekhar DP, CEO, Jain Group of Schools while interacting with Education World had earlier said that this is the time to think out of the box. “Considering the current situation, it is not safe to conduct offline examinations. I do not think we would be completely safe by July. The environment was not a focused one for the students’ and they have been met with enormous distractions. In such a scenario, physical examinations will ensure more anxiety on them and parents too. They will not be able to give their best. Many have been thrown off their comfort level owing to the pandemic and many have been a victim to the present scenario. It is not just marks that decide a future. The National Education Policy too talks about competency-based analysis rather than normal exams. There are ways to evaluate students. The larger objective is to make children suitable citizens of country.”
Colonel Prem Prakash, principal of Radiant International School, Patna, while talking on the CBSE examination had stated, “The CBSE needs to think differently. Focusing on exams is not the right cue. One must focus on learning. There will be state-specific challenges. As a school, we are in touch with our students and trying to keep them motivated. But focussing on ‘learning’ is the need of the hour.”
Also Read: CBSE class 12 board exams: Educators divided