New exam pattern evokes mixed feelings in Prakasam

Physical Sciences, Natural Sciences exams should be held separately, feel students

Updated - August 26, 2022 09:59 am IST

Published - August 26, 2022 09:44 am IST - ONGOLE

Students of some city schools are euphoric following the State government's decision to introduce a six question-paper pattern from the current academic year in place of the 11 question papers, in line with its proposal to introduce the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) system of education by 2024-25.

‘’Now, we will have a level-playing field with our CBSE counterparts. We will be able to fare better in competitive exams like JEE and NEET at the national level,” say a group of jubilant students at a school here.

In these schools, they complete the syllabus well within the first three months of the academic year and sit for model tests repeatedly from October so that even mediocre students are able to perform well in the annual examinations after the rigorous exercise. Simultaneously, the students are being prepared for JEE/Medicine on a long-term basis starting from Class VI onwards

However, the enthusiasm of these students is not shared by their counterparts in the State-run schools in rural parts of the district. The cut in the number of question papers will not automatically reduce stress. Students used to get enough time to prepare for each examination under the 11-question paper-system.

“It was because of the so-called education sector reforms introduced by the State government that the pass percentage was poor during the last academic year,” opined some students at a government school in Kothapatnam. Thanks to COVID-19, these students have missed two precious academic years and were promoted to higher classes without obtaining the required knowledge. They will find the going tough with the introduction of the six-paper examination system.

“Syllabus will continue to be extensive. We do not expect any reduction in syllabus in the wake of reduction in the number of question papers,” they lament in a conversation with The Hindu.

Clubbing of the Physical Sciences (PS) and Natural Sciences (NS) by the government will lead to confusion as the answer sheets will be distributed separately, feels B. Varadhan, a schoolteacher at a government school at Kothapatnam. Moreover, it will be tedious for the students. Earlier, PS and NS question papers used to be for 50 marks each and the students were given two hours and 45 minutes to answer them. Now, both the question papers for 100 marks will have to be answered in three hours and 50 minutes.

In the 11-question paper system, if a student performs unsatisfactorily in Mathematics first paper, they can make up for it in the second Mathematics paper. Now, this will not be possible, observes a functionary of the Andhra Pradesh Teachers Association (APTF). NS and PS exams should be held separately and holidays should be given between each examination to help students prepare well, they feel.

Meanwhile, a member of the Andhra Pradesh School Education Monitoring and Regulatory Commission explains that the change in examination pattern is with a view to assess students' understanding, reading and interpretation skills and writing ability and avoid rote learning.

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