Schools

Will CBSE revaluate papers after court order?

Level playing field: Earlier, there was no uniform moderation criteria across boards.   | Photo Credit: K. Pichumani

The results of the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) Class X and XII examinations this year have been withheld following a May 24 Delhi High Court order asking the board to evaluate the exams in accordance with the marks moderation policy.

The court order follows a students' plea seeking a direction to the board not to scrap the policy.

To comply with the court order, the CBSE will have to re-evaluate the papers. It, however, said it would consult the HRD Ministry on the court order. “The board will study the court order in detail and consult the Ministry to chalk out the future path. This, however, may not delay the results, as moderation is not a very time-consuming task,” PTI quoted a source as saying.

What is marks moderation policy?

The policy was basically devised to award grace marks to students who may otherwise fail by falling short of a few marks to pass the exam. It also makes up for difficult question papers or confusing or inarticulate questions, which put students at disadvantage. Under the policy, students can be awarded up to 15% extra marks after the board is satisfied that it has enough complaints about the difficulty level of a question in a subject. It will determine the grace marks that could be awarded for such questions to each student through a panel.

Why did all school boards decide to drop the policy?

The inflation in marks, arising out of the 15% extra marks awarded for difficult questions and the number of students scoring above 95%, made the higher education admissions difficult, as colleges asked for near perfect cut-off scores.

Hence, the CBSE, in December last, resolved to seek the Human Resource Development (HRD) Ministry’s help to get all the State boards develop a consensus on ending the moderation policy.

The share of 90 percenters in CBSE has jumped to almost 8% in 2016 — this fraction was slightly less than 1% in 2004.

What is the problem with dropping the moderation policy this year?

The CBSE, while approaching the HRD Ministry to scrap the policy, had opined that removal of the policy would put its students at a disadvantage in undergraduate admissions, and said that it was important that all State boards agreed to it.

At a meeting with the HRD Ministry on April 24, the Central and State school boards discussed concerns that spiking of marks by some boards was denying students across the country a level playing field in admission to higher education, and decided to discontinue the practice of raising marks through moderation.

However, a few States decided to implement the shift in policy only by 2018, putting the CBSE students at a disadvantage, as the students from those respective States may score better than those from the States that have decided to scrap the moderation policy this year itself.

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Printable version | Mar 3, 2021 2:40:10 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/education/schools/will-cbse-re-valuate-papers-after-court-order/article18577383.ece

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