The new Government Order (GO) that scaled down the grace mark to sportspersons has drawn sharp criticism.
The GO by the General Education department on April 20 greatly reduced the grace marks awarded to sportspersons for SSLC and Plus Two courses.
As per new GO, participation in an international event will fetch the sportsperson 30 marks while for the national events the grace mark was fixed at 25.
The grace mark for individual winners in State events has been fixed at 20 while it is 17 marks for the runner-up and 14 marks for third place.
The new GO also doesn’t grant any grace mark to athletes and swimmers finishing between fourth and eighth positions in State-level events.
The existing grace marks allotted to sportspersons till the new GO was 150 marks for participation in international events and it was 60 for national events.
The corresponding grace mark for winners in State events was 30, 24 for runner-up, and 18 for third.
The sportspersons and their parents are up in arms against the new GO, as majority of them were awaiting the results of SSLC and Plus Two courses. “Sportspersons who pursue sports seriously often have to spend a long time away from studies and school. Had the government passed this order at the start of the academic year, many of them would have taken a break from sports to concentrate on studies. The government, while reducing grace mark for sportspersons, has not reduced it for those taking part in arts and science competitions. The government has let down the sportspersons and sports will no longer be a viable option for many in the State. The coming years will see reduced participation,” said Rakesh Shekar the secretary of Kerala State Badminton and Shuttle Association.
The Parent Teachers Association of G.V. Raja Sports School has submitted a memorandum to Education Minister V. Sivankutty requesting him to revoke the new GO.
The sportspersons, their parents and other stakeholders will take out a protest march in front of the Secretariat on Wednesday.
No grace marks for those finishing between fourth and eighth positions in State-level events