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Grade 12 students’ future in limbo

14 Apr 2021 By ANIRBAN RAY

Uncertainty hangs over the future of 1,718 Grade 12 students of Indian schools in Oman as their board exams scheduled in May have been postponed indefinitely. The Grade 10 exams, which 2,554 students in Oman were expected to take, have been cancelled. 

A high-level meeting chaired by Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday decided to cancel the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) Grade 10 exams and postpone the Grade 12 boards due to the resurgence of COVID-19 cases in the country. 

Confirming the decision, a member of the Board of Directors of Indian Schools in Oman said it was taken for the safety of students. 

There were sighs of relief as well as despair among students and their parents in the sultanate. While some were happy for the extra time the postponement will afford for preparations, others fear the loss in time will result in an uncertain career.

Aditya Harish, a Grade 12 student of Indian School Ghubra, said, “I was preparing for engineering entrance exams in India, including the Joint Entrance Examination – Main. Now there’s uncertainty as we are not sure when the exams will be conducted, and consequently, when the results will be declared and when we can seek admission for higher studies.”

Many of his friends, Aditya informed, are eyeing foreign universities for which they need to furnish mark sheets in stipulated time. “I doubt these foreign universities will wait for our exams and results.” 

He added that his parents have spent a considerable sum of money for his coaching classes to prepare for the engineering entrance exams and “the uncertainty has made us all unhappy”. 

Indu, mother of Grade 10 student Gopika of Indian School Wadi Kabir, is happy her daughter will be promoted without a board exam, but is worried because “it has been so long our children have been to school and sat for proper exams. Though they have prelims and mock exams now at school – tomorrow is the last one – things are very uncertain now”. 

According to the decision, the situation will be reviewed on June 1, 2021, by CBSE on conducting the Grade 12 exams following which details will be shared. ‘A notice of at least 15 days will be given before the start of the examinations,’ a statement from CBSE said. 

Results for Grade 10 students will be prepared on the basis of an objective criterion to be developed by CBSE. ‘Any candidate who is not satisfied with the marks allocated to him/her on this basis will be given an opportunity to sit in an exam as and when the conditions are conducive to hold the exams.’

On Wednesday, the Government of India stated, ‘The pandemic situation in the country is seeing a resurgence of COVID-19 positive cases in many states, with a few states having been affected more than others. In this situation, schools have been shut down in 11 states.’

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