Students Of Class 10, 12 In Assam Move Supreme Court, Seek Cancellation Of Board Exams

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Students from Assam have moved to the Supreme Court of India seeking cancellation of the High School Leaving Certification Examination (HSLC or Class 10) and Higher Secondary (Class 12) board examinations. The plea filed by a group of students states that they are being compelled to appear in the HSLC and HS exams amid a threat to their life. The petition says: “In the interest of the safety of lakhs of students and their parents it is better to cancel the exams.”

The Assam government on June 10 said exams will be conducted only if the COVID-19 positivity rate drops below 2 per cent. The two education boards – Board of Secondary Education Assam (SEBA) and the Assam Higher Secondary Education Council (AHSEC) – will try to hold the exams in mid-July, Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma had said.

Class 10, 12 board exams will be held between July 15 and 20 for two to three papers. Male and female students will write the exams on separate dates to ensure social distancing, the chief minister said.

The chief minister’s announcement to hold exams between July 15 and July 20 created panic among students and parents, the plea states.

“The government’s statement that Covid positivity rate below 2 per cent has no relevance,” it adds.

The Covid positivity rate by July 1 must be below 2 per cent for the exams to take place. Otherwise, teachers will promote students with school-based evaluation, Mr Sarma said. He advised students to continue their preparations.

On June 8, Assam Education Minister Ranoj Pegu said that the government have decided to hold board exams after discussing the issue with stakeholders.

“We will hold the exams with a reduced number of subjects and if necessary, on a reduced number of marks. We are observing the trend of Covid so we might get a window where Covid will be lowest in July and August…we have to complete the exams by August 15,” Mr Pegu told NDTV .

In the wake of the Coronavirus crisis, the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) and the Council for the Indian School Certificate Examinations (CISCE) have cancelled their Class 12 board exams. Following the suit, most of the states boards have also called off the final examinations for Class 12 keeping students’ safety in check.

Assam, being an exception, plans to conduct these exams amid the pandemic.

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