Council of Higher Secondary Education (CHSE), Odisha is expected to make a decision on the impending Class 12 board exams after the weather conditions stabilise in the state. Currently, the state government is preoccupied with making preparations for the ensuing cyclone Yaas. Previously, the Class 12 board exams for the academic year 2020-21 were scheduled to begin from May 18, 2021. However, the COVID19 situation worsened in the country, compelling the state government to postpone the board exams indefinitely.
The Odisha state government now looks at two alternatives with regards to conduct the board exams. The first alternative is to conduct the exams as per the usual format after the COVID19 situation improves in the state. The second alternative is to conduct a shorter version of those exams. To do so, they may either choose to reduce the duration of each exam or to conduct the exam for a few, core subjects.
Samir Ranjan Dash, the Chief Minister of Odisha, commentated on the issue. In his statement, Dash mentioned the two alternatives available. He also mentioned that the Odisha government is currently busy preparing for the cyclones. Hence, a final call on those exams can only be taken after the cyclonic conditions normalise. As per reports, the decision may come in the first week of June 2021, around the same time that CBSE and CISCE take a call.
Since the postponement of exams, students and parents are intently waiting for the state government to provide some clarity on the Class 12 board exams. However, given the unstable circumstances, the Odisha state government could not provide any tentative schedule. Earlier, some students were also opposing offline exams due to the pandemic. They even stopped studying o preparing for the exams as a sign of protest against offline exams.
Last week, Basudev Chhatoi, former Chairman of CHSE expressed his opinion on the importance of Class 12 board exams. According to Chhatoi, these exams are a milestone for a student’s future and hence, they must not be cancelled. Any alternative evaluating options are unsuitable to calculate results as that would be unfair to students. Hence, holding the examination is the only option.
On Sunday, Mr. Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’, the Education Minister of India, conducted a high-level virtual meeting with state education ministers and education secretaries. The meeting was convened to discuss the various alternatives available to conduct the CBSE Class 12 board exams. The education ministry is expected to announce its final decision on June 01, 2021. This decision of the centre regarding Class 12 boar exams is likely to affect the decisions of various stat education departments. While CBSE shall most likely conduct the exams, it is a matter of which pattern they choose to implement.