Chief Minister of Karnataka B. S. Yediyurappa was quick to defend the state government’s decision to conduct the Secondary School Leaving Certificate (SSLC) or Class 12 board exams amid the growing concerns about the pandemic. He defended the government’s decision against the members of his cabinet claiming that the decision was “unilateral”, meaning that the ministers were not kept in the loop while announcing the SSLC 2021 dates. All this chaos began when the state education minister announced that the Class 10 board exams shall be conducted on July 19 and 22, 2021.
According to the Primary and Secondary Education Minister S Suresh Kumar, the Class 10 students will have to appear for board exams in July 2021. On July 19, 2021, exams shall take place for Mathematics, Sciences and Social Sciences. Thereafter, on July 22, 2021, boards exams will be held for the first, second and third languages. The exams shall be organised from 10:30 am to 1:30 pm. A total of 8,76,581 students shall be appearing for the SSLC 2021 exams using OMR sheets.
A few hours later, the state health minister K Sudhakar stated that he was unaware of the cabinet’s decision to conduct the Class 10 board exams. Thereafter, he needed to discuss with the education minister to clarify whether any directions have been given by the health department before the exam announcement. However, under such circumstances, the only concern is to safeguard the health of children.
The health minister went onto add that he was unsure whether the state government consulted the COVID-19 Advisory Committee (CAC) beforehand or not. Therefore, he could not confirm the examination schedule announced by Suresh Kumar.
Coming to the aid of the state education minister, the chief minister tweeted on June 29, 2021, stating that Suresh Kumar had consulted Mr. Sudhakar before announcing the exam schedule. A thorough meeting was organised beforehand and a final call was taken, keeping the interest of students in mind. Therefore, the decision to conduct the Class 10 board exams is not unilateral. Under such circumstances, any confusion surrounding the exams shall worsen the turmoil of students and hence, should not be encouraged.
Suresh Kumar also tweeted a clarification announcing that the health minister was also keep in the loop. Accordingly, the health department officials were also a part of the press conference in which the SSLC exam schedule was announced. A two-hour long meeting with the health department officials prior to the press conference. Based on TAC recommendations, the principal secretary of the health department was also present at the meeting. Subsequently, Standard Operating procedures (SOPs) for the Class 10 exams were formulated based on the guidelines issued by the health department.A