A re-think required on the conduct of class 12 boards-Dr Jagdish Gandhi

Lucknow, June 9 : In the wake of the declining COVID cases, it is important that CBSE decides to conduct the class 12 Board exams to prevent injustice being meted out to the hard working meritorious students whose entire career and life-chances will be at stake if they are not given a chance to show their academic prowess and intellectual mettle, said Dr Jagdish Gandhi, Founder of the World’s largest City Montessori School with over 55,000 students.

            Dr Gandhi further said that due to cancellation of the class 12 board exams, students now have an acute anxiety about the algorithm of calculation of marks, the fairness and transparency of the process, and the acceptance of the allocated marks for admission to universities in India and abroad. If marks are decided by the board on the basis of internal school assessments and not through the third-party evaluation system of a board exam, many schools may have the temptation to inflate marks in non-transparent ways.  Another fear is that highly talented students will be bracketed with the weaker students, putting them at a grossly unfair loss.

            He further said class 12 board exam marks give a clear, objective and fine-grained criterion for admission to universities which define a cut-off percentage for admitting students. This simplifies the admission process and makes it transparent and fair. If board exams are not held, will there be nuanced-enough marks information with sufficient gradations in marks for universities to declare cut-offs, and if cut-off percentages are not fixed, it would be an uphill task for universities to conduct admissions on the basis of entrance examinations of a huge number of students from all over the country. If universities have to hold entrance exams after all, then the whole logic of cancelling class 12 boards will be negated anyway, and they may as well be held !

            Dr Gandhi further said that in a recent statement, the CBSE Board had reassured that the option has been kept open to conduct the board exams if corona cases decline sufficiently. Due to the efforts of Hon’ble PM Modi and the government, corona cases are down drastically and even the worst affected states of Delhi and Maharashtra are opening up again and by July, the pandemic situation will be much under control. Therefore the month of August will be most conducive for the conduct of the class 12 Board exam which would be not only in the interest of the students but also in the nation’s interest.

            He also said that the National Testing Agency (NTA) has announced to release the exam schedule for NEET and JEE entrance by next week. In such a situation, canceling the 12th class board exam will be unfair to the students, especially the meritorious students across the country, as well as to the teachers who have been assiduously preparing students for the board exams through online classes for the last two years amidst the challenges of the pandemic.

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