P.G. Subramanian has been busy for the last three to four days. As teacher and examination coordinator of Sir Sivaswami Kalalaya Senior Secondary School, he is scheduling plans for invigilators, preparing checklist and looking into classroom arrangements, among others. A similar atmosphere is buzzing across most schools as they make meticulous arrangements for the Board examinations.

While Higher Secondary School examination began on Monday, both CBSE and ICSE will start their Board examinations from March 3.

For CBSE schools, it would be last time that the Class X board examination are being held, following a decision on making board examination optional as that would lessen the burden on students. Other classes are getting ready for the annual examination, after a circular was issued by the Board instructing that the academic year must close by March. But the next academic year seems to be more challenging for teachers of CBSE stream as they would be adopting the new grading system for the first time. Teachers wonder if students would be at an advantage or a disadvantage with the new system going to be accessed round the year, teachers wonder.

ICSE schools are going for centralised marking system for the first time this year. “Previously, invigilators used to take the papers home for correction. Now, they sit in an allotted centre and complete the process, which we believe will make the process error-free, transparent and speed-up the result process,” says Gerry Arathon, Additional Secretary and Officiating Chief Executive and Secretary, Council for Indian School Certificate Examinations.

About 56,210 ISC students from 733 schools and 1,13,449 ICSE students from 1,568 schools would be taking the examination this year. Beginning March 23, the Class X examinations of SSLC, Anglo Indian, Matriculation and OSLC streams would begin with the language paper. According to a press release from the Directorate of Government Examinations, 14,516 more students are appearing for the SSLC examination than last year. In Chennai, 17,400 students would take the matriculation examination.

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