“Aasu told Seba that the registered board examinees must not lose their academic year and should not face health-related problems either. Seba has assured us that if the Covid situation improves, they are ready to go ahead to conduct the exam by giving a 15-day notice in advance,” said Aasu chief adviser Samujjal Bhattacharyya. Seba will hold another round of talks with Aasu after five days.
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In view of the surging Covid positive cases, classes X and XII state board exams remain postponed until further orders. Both Class X and XII state board exams were scheduled to begin from May 11. A record number of 4.4 lakh students were registered for appearing in the High School Leaving Certificate (HSLC) and Assam High Madrassa (AHM) examinations under Seba this year. But considering uncertainties regarding the improvement in the Covid situation, the Seba and Assam Higher Secondary Education (AHSEC) council have not been able to reschedule the exam time table. Reports are doing the rounds that considering the pandemic situation, the Class X boards may be held for only three subjects this year. State education minister Ranoj Pegu recently said students may get a chance to appear in three subjects only, if Seba finally approved a proposal on restructuring the exam.
Aasu president Dipanka Kumar Nath told the media that Seba will soon make its decision public, if any curtailment is done on the number of subjects. While the Class X board examinees under CBSE have to appear in five subjects of 500 marks, Seba students are already appearing for six subjects (600 marks) to pass the Class X boards.
“Covid-19 spread in Assam has been much faster during the second wave. At this moment, it will be premature to take any decision on the new exam exam schedule. But Seba officials told us that the exam must be conducted because there is no other means of internal assessment under the state board, like in CBSE,” Nath said.
Covid positivity rate has been showing a declining trend in the last few days, and chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma has already predicted that the state may show ‘good improvement’ in Covid situation in the next 15-20 days. A board member in Seba told TOI that they are expecting a decision on the rescheduled dates by June 15.
While appealing to students to keep studying, Aasu general secretary Sankar Jyoti Baruah insisted on holding deliberations with academicians, students and guardians before finalizing their stand. “Aasu wants a few days’ time to know the viewpoint of various stakeholders on conducting exams during the time of pandemic. After that we will make our stand clear in the next four-five days,” he added.