– Reshma Ravishanker
The Karnataka state government, which has been dithering on conducting offline final examinations for students between classes I and IX, is expected to take a final decision on the assessment system to be followed for the academic year 2020-21 this week. Primary and secondary education, S Suresh Kumar met with K-12 education stakeholders including parent groups, officials in the education department, teachers and school management representatives earlier this week.
On April 1, the minister, in a statement announced suspension of in-campus classes for students of classes VI and IX in the wake of spurting cases of Covid-19. This sudden closure threw plans of several private schools haywire. While some schools are yet to conduct final exams, exams were underway in a few schools.
According to Kumar a majority of the stakeholders have proposed that even if not conventional offline exams, a ‘reasonable assessment system’ must be carried out to ascertain children’s learning attainments and levels.
The Associated Management of Private Schools in Karnataka had made a representation to the minister in March seeking permission for its member schools to conduct in-campus exams for students if not classes.
On April 5, Basavaraj Horatti, chairman, Karnataka Legislative Council wrote a letter to the education minister, demanding examinations/assessment to be conducted in schools for primary and secondary school students. “Not conducting exams for students who have worked hard throughout the year and allowing them to pass without assessments along with those who have not attended classes could have adverse effects. It is bound to demotivate the students,” he said in the letter.
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