Many CBSE Class XII students said the mathematics examination on Wednesday was tough.

The students said they feared the results would affect their prospects in gaining admission to professional engineering courses. At least 50 per cent marks is mandatory to qualify for admission to engineering courses in the State.

In fact, mathematics teachers feared a high percentage of failure unless the valuation was made liberal.

“The matter was brought to the notice of CBSE chairman Vineet Joshi when tough valuation last year left many students ineligible for engineering course in the State. The situation was even graver this year as reflected in panic e-mails reaching the association from schools across the State. We will move a resolution to the CBSE chairman on Thursday urging corrective measures to address the anxiety of students and parents,” Indira Rajan, State general secretary, Kerala CBSE School Managements Association, told The Hindu.

The situation will lead to a high rate of attrition from CBSE schools considering that students in the State syllabus score high marks thanks to the relatively easier question papers and even more liberal valuation. The distribution of marks among chapters, a pattern followed in the previous CBSE exams, was completely ignored, she said.

A mathematics teacher of a major city school told The Hindu on condition of anonymity that the question paper would hit the prospects of average and below average students considering that even the brightest of students could just about finish the exam in the nick of time leaving them with no time to review.

“These students were writing their first board exam, as they were the first batch of students after the introduction of Continuous and Comprehensive Evaluation (CCE) that did away with the mandatory board exams in Class X. Besides, time also was insufficient as comprehending the questions was not easy,” she said.

Vysakh Nair, a Class XII student of Vidyodaya School, Thevakkal, said that scoring full marks was almost impossible as the questions were very different from the pattern given in the sample question papers.

“The questions were also lengthy in the sense that questions which should have carried at least 10 marks would at best fetch six marks,” he said.

Geeta Lakshmi, Prinicipal, Rani Public School, Vadakara, said at least 10-12 questions out of 29 were high on the scale of difficulty. “Not just that the questions were tough, but they were posed in an indirect way.” she said.

Sreelakshmi, another Class XII student, said the exam was hard despite her best of preparations. “There were some sure questions from every chapter going by the previous question papers. But none of them was asked and to make things difficult there were even questions from out of textbooks,” she said.

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