Disagree to agree

Education Haryana Pandemic

Amidst students’ disapproval, CBSE’s proposal to conduct class 12 board examinations offline meets states’ desire to prioritize vaccination of teachers and students. 

Sonepat: Class 12 students are against the Central Board of Secondary Education’s latest announcement of conducting offline board examinations in a shortened format in July-August 2021. In recent developments, it’s been reported today that the state of Haryana has urged the Central Government to vaccinate teachers and students on priority to ensure their safety during their time at the test centre. 

Students of Class 12 have continued to protest the conduct of offline examinations, accompanied by their consistent appeals to the government to take their mental and physical health into consideration. 

Chhavi, a student of Class 12, said, “What’s wrong with online examinations? Consider the state of the world.” She added, “Moreover, I know several people who have caught the virus despite getting the vaccination. It doesn’t work if you have only gotten the first vaccine dose; it takes months before one gets immune to the virus.”

Hashtags like #CancelExamsSaveStudents, #Cancel12thBoardExams, and #ModijiNoOfflineExams, have been trending on twitter for the past week. 

 Siddhant Rai, a student, tweeted that, “The evaluation of Class 12 students must be done on the basis of internal assessment as it’s a wide spectrum and consists of enormous tests.”

Aryan tagged Mamta Sharma, an advocate of the Supreme Court of India, and questioned, “Some students have lost their parents. Are they in a situation to appear for an offline exam?” 

Some teachers are hopeful but do not believe that their vaccine prioritization will help solve the problem. Rajni Gautum, who teaches Information Technology to students of Class 12 in Swarnprastha Public School, Sonepat, said that the non-availability of vaccines is the main problem. “Even if we’re prioritised, how long will it take for all of us, including Class 12 students, to get vaccinated? What if students still catch the virus, despite the vaccination drive?” she questioned.

She added, “Even if the program is followed as systematically as possible, it will take a long time for it to be deemed safe enough for students to appear for offline examinations in crowded centres.”  

Rajesh, a mathematics teacher, said that students of Class 12 are already trying to prepare for higher studies, the delay in the decision on their examinations will only put their future at a disadvantage. He said, “The pandemic is already taking a toll on students, board examinations shouldn’t be another factor.”

Many people feel that it might help schools to move forward with their academic year with ease in promotion of Class 11 students. Dr. Mukesh Kumar, a member of School Managing Committee(SMC) of schools in Sonepat, said, “Policies framed by the CBSE are not student friendly, nor do they give any liberty to schools. In the end, the various alternatives to conduct offline examinations help no one but the board itself.” He added, “To prioritize vaccination of teachers and students would have been a wonderful idea if it could’ve been implemented immediately. But India doesn’t have the infrastructure or resources to support that. Time is the most crucial factor here, the decisions of the authority still remain ambiguous and uncertain.”

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