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Let Class 12 Board Exams Not Be A Barrier To Students’ Future

Regardless of what I am doing, there is this nagging thought at the back of my mind — fear of an impending exam that I am not sure whether I should worry about.

Similar is the mental condition of around 12 lakh students all over the country as they wait with bated breath for the government’s final decision, eager to be free of extreme tension.

An easy solution to this would be to finish the problem itself, that is, the class 12 Board exams. But we seem to correlate cancelling of exams with cancelling our future altogether. It seems there is no way forward for us other than our marks in Board exams.

At this juncture, where the future of lakhs of young people are at stake, a single examination should not stand as a barrier. The argument against it could be, we did not have comprehensive exams all round the year for an internal assessment.

The purpose of our class 12 Board exams is to highlight and differentiate merit which leads to admission into esteemed educational institutions.

We should keep in mind that calibre can be measured in various other ways. We can have a set of comprehensive MCQ tests for each subject, we can present case studies or portfolios on our chosen topics, write college essays, personal interviews can work wonders… and millions of other ways. Instead, we seem to be obsessed with a 12th-grade exam.

We are 17-18 year olds who understand the implications of exams’ cancellation and COVID-19 all too well. Scientists have already predicted a third wave of the coronavirus… there could be a fourth wave and more as well… We should take lessons from last year and make decisions with the virus in mind, rather than wait infinitely for this to end.

It is frightening that only a handful of states have considered these solutions, keeping in mind the rising perils of this virus. But it ultimately boils down to the decision of the Central government.

I appeal to the government and education officials to consider the students and their education with a realistic approach, rather than stall the thought process until the virus says goodbye.