In a big relief to the students, Prime Minister Modi-led cabinet has decided to cancel the Class XII board examinations conducted by the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) this year.
The decision was taken yesterday evening (first June) after a review meeting chaired by the prime minister. Originally, the exam was scheduled to be held in May 2021.
After the meeting, PM Modi tweeted: “After extensive consultations, we have taken a decision that is student-friendly, one that safeguards the health as well as future of our youth.”
He said, “In today’s time, such exams cannot be the reason to put youth at risk, said the Prime Minister, adding that COVID-19 has already affected the academic calendar and the issue of board exams has been causing immense anxiety among students, parents and teachers.”
A statement from the Prime Minister’s Office issued after the meeting, as reported by The Hindu, reads:
“In view of the uncertain conditions due to COVID and the feedback obtained from various stakeholders, it was decided that Class XII Board Exams would not be held this year. It was also decided that CBSE will take steps to compile the results of class XII students as per a well-defined objective criteria in a time-bound manner,”
However, the statement also clarified that those students who would wish to take the exam would be able to do so. as and when the situation becomes conducive, just like last year, when the same option was offered to the students.
Reportedly, the Council for the Indian School Certificate Examinations has also decided to cancel its Class XII examinations.
The decision to cancel Class XII boards comes more than a month after CBSE announced cancellation of the Class X boards on 15 April.
The state governments’ opinion on conducting the exams remained divided. Some like Delhi and Maharashtra had called for cancellation, while others had favoured holding them in a shortened form with objective type questions.
Reportedly, close to 14 lakh students had registered to write the Class XII board examination.
CBSE announced the marking policy for the cancelled Class X board exams on first May. As per the policy, each subject will be scored out of a maximum 100 marks.
While previously, only 20 marks were reserved for internal assessments by the school, this time, the remaining 80 marks (previously given by year-end CBSE board exams) will also have to done by the respective schools this time.
A Result Committee will have to be constituted by schools to score students for these 80 marks based on their performance in various tests conducted by the school throughout the year - pre-boards (40 marks), unit tests (10 marks), and half-yearly/ mid-terms (30 marks).
If a school has conducted more than one exam in each category, the Result Committee may fix the weightage to be given to each test within the category, subject to overall maximum marks for that category.
The Result Committee will consist of the Principal and seven teachers – five from Mathematics, Social Science, Science, and two languages, along with two teachers from neighbouring schools.
CBSE is yet to announce its alternative assessment method for Class XII boards.
Reportedly, one option being considered is grading based on the student’s internal assessment and practical exam scores from Class XII, rationalised according to analysis of the school’s mark distribution in the board exams over the last three years.
Another option would be grading based on the student’s final exam scores from Class IX, X and XI.
Now, the students are waiting for the jury on all India competitions for college admissions like JEE and NEET. According to the reports, these were not discussed at the meeting.
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