With a considerable period of the academic year (2011-2012) that prevailed under uncertainty over the implementation of Samacheer Kalvi (Uniform System of School Education) and delayed arrival of revised text books, the current batch of Class X students had to grapple with the limited time for preparation. They will be appearing for the public examination, under the new board, within a few weeks. Besides students, parents are also apprehensive about the performance of their children.
“Initially, we were anxious as the text books were made available only by September. So we downloaded the portions from the Internet. The school was able to complete the portions by December and had conducted six whole portion tests and repeated cycle tests. In February, the Parents Teachers Association distributed the model question papers, five each for every subject. I find the new system better as the question pattern is application-oriented and it will help the students to appear for other competitive examinations,” says S. Senthil Kumaran, father of a Matriculation school student. He said that one has to adapt to changes and his son who usually does well was able to cope with the changes. Another parent, Tamil Vannan, finds the Uniform System of Education too simple and his contention is that students would find it difficult when they pursue higher education and would not help them when they appear for IIT and AIEEE entrance examinations. “My son has already learnt many of the concepts of Class X when he was in Class IX (Matriculation stream),” he added. He said that as the distribution of text books got delayed, the schools would have rushed through the portions and many students could have found it difficult to learn by understanding the concepts.
Shyamala, a mother, says that in the earlier system they were two papers for science and mathematics and so students divided the portions accordingly and prepared. But in the present system, it is not so. Her concern is that from now on, questions need not necessarily be from the exercises at the end of each lesson. It will be application-oriented and unless children learn the subject well, it will be difficult to attend. The system is on par with Central Board of Secondary Education. Moreover, time was less as the decision on the implementation of Samacheer Kalvi got delayed, she added. “A good feature of the new system is that the text books have a lot of illustrations and pictures and it is interesting to go through the books,” she said.
Another parent, Sugnathi, said that in Matriculation Board, students were loaded with heavy portions but in the Uniform System of Education learning has been made easy as it is activity-based.