New method may be unfair to many: Pupils

New Delhi: As the Supreme Court on Thursday accepted the Central Board of Secondary Education's proposal for alternative evaluation of Class 12 students on the basis of Class 10 and 11 scores and Class 12 internal exam scores, many students in the city felt that they had lost out on the crucial chance to appear for their final exam.

Traditionally, 12th Board exams are treated as a do-or-die exam with students preferring to focus more on tuition and preparing for various entrance exams in the two years leading up to the final.

As a result, class 11 exams and class 12 internal assessments are treated more as practice tests rather than exams where scoring matters. This certainly seems to be the case for engineering aspirants such as Saksham, who studied Science (Physics, Chemistry, Math) and Computer Applications at Bal Bharati Public School in Noida, and wants to get into an engineering course.

He said, "The weightage for class 11 marks is really high. I did not focus on studies that much in class 11 because I had just finished my class 10 boards, and I felt that was the time I could spend time with my friends and live my school life, because I had to focus on the 12th board again next year. During class 12 pre-boards and internal assessments, I was focussed on JEE preparations. I was not happy when the board exam was cancelled because I wanted to improve my final score and was confident of scoring more than 90 per cent."

But some students have made their peace with it and concluded that the assessment method is fair. "We know that the whole year we studied and took tests online, and no one will disagree that students got more leniency in online grading, so that's a major plus", says Divij, who studied Commerce and Legal Studies at Delhi Public School in Dwarka.

"In class 10th, many students received good marks because the CBSE's grading is more lenient than that internally by individual schools. However, equal weightage has been given to class 11 marks, where scores tend to go down a bit, so it might bring down our overall percentage, but I feel it is fair. I just hope the results are declared soon so that we can get into colleges," he said, adding, however, that given the uncertainty of results under this new assessment method, colleges should consider conducting common entrance tests for incoming freshers.

Moreover, for students who have secured conditional admissions to colleges abroad, the road to their future is now more uncertain than ever.

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