Mumbai

Two exams for Class XII: proposal

Cause for cheer? Parents protest on Marine Drive against NEET in 2016.

Cause for cheer? Parents protest on Marine Drive against NEET in 2016.  

Govt. wants easier exam format for students not interested in engineering, medical entrance exams

Mumbai: The State education department is considering a dual exam system for Class XII, which proposes an easier exam format for those not interested in entrance exams like NEET and JEE, Education Minister Vinod Tawde said on Thursday. The proposal is being studied by the academic council of the Maharashtra State Board of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education, and if approved, could be implemented in the Class XII board exams in March 2019.

Speaking to reporters, Mr. Tawde said students would be allowed to choose the format in their exam forms. "Of the five lakh students appearing for the Class XII exams, roughly 3,000 pursue engineering and 2,000 medicine. So, why should a majority of students take the difficult exam format? Students not interested in medicine and engineering could opt for the earlier exam format.” Tawde said. He said a decision would be announced before the next academic year begins.

Joel Nadar, a Class XII student, feels a dual exam system allows him more options. Joel, who is also preparing for JEE, says he will decide on his exam format depending on how well he studies. “As my Class XII exams don’t affect my entrance exam scores, I’d prefer to focus more on the entrance exams.”

Principals not impressed

Sangeeta Kohli, principal, SK Somaiya Degree College of Arts, Science and Commerce, wanted to know if the government has the machinery in place for the new system. While welcoming a better support system for students, she doubted results would be out on time. As it is, she said, the State Board’s Class XII results are declared well after those of the ISCE and CBSE. “We’re aware of the problems the government is facing in declaring results, but they should have teachers available to assess papers on time,” she said.

Dr. Naresh Chandra, former pro-Vice Chancellor, Mumbai University and currently principal, Birla College of Arts, Science and Commerce, Kalyan, said, “It’s a complex issue. I understand the government wants to provide the best education, but academicians need to deliberate on this. For example, will they mention in marksheets which exams the student appeared for? While there may be socio-economic and urban-rural divide among students, every child has potential, and platforms should be open for all. Academicians should ensure the system is student-centric.”

Implementation is everything, says Shoba Vasudevan, principal, R.A. Podar College of Commerce and Economics. “It’s too early for students to assess themselves, in my opinion. A student’s intelligence quotient improves suddenly at times, so we can’t let students brand or assess themselves at this stage.”

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Printable version | Jun 4, 2020 4:13:44 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/mumbai/two-exams-for-class-xii-proposal/article22321128.ece

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