Examinations up to class IX: DSEK submits a proposal to the government for the November session; struggling students
SRINAGAR: Class VII student Kashaf faces a unique exam dilemma. For the past two years, she’s been promoted to the next class on her online performance, which was basically a sham with parents helping her during exams.
It was the first time in two years that she was preparing for a paper-and-pencil exam at school. Since the government decided to move the board exam to March, pupils up to class IX have been on their own.
Kashaf is preparing for the Unit II exam without any clarity on the Semester II exam which is usually held in October-November.
“Ideally, this time, we should have prepared for the Semester II exam. But we’ve missed the deadline and are stuck in Unit II. Now we don’t know when our term II. which is a sort of final exam, will take place. I am unable to understand,” she said.
Kashaf is not an isolated case. Thousands of students are in trouble regarding the exam schedule this year. There are reports that the government may be holding exams up to Class IX by November. Yet there is no official communication, unlike secondary and upper secondary examinations.
Director of School Education in Kashmir (DSEK), Tasaduq Hussain Mir, told the Kashmir Monitor that they have submitted a proposal to the government to hold exams up to Class IX by November this year.
“We submitted a proposal to the government. The last call must be taken by the government. We have proposed that this year’s exams take place in November. From next year, the academic session may be postponed for all classes. Next year it will be a uniform academic calendar for all classes,” he said.
After the pandemic, most schools announced a mass promotion to students. Some schools held online tests and others gave students papers with instructions to attempt the questions at home and submit answer sheets.
A recent survey by the Ministry of Education revealed that after the pandemic, private school enrollment declined in Jammu and Kashmir thereafter. On the other hand, the number of students in public schools has increased.
This is mainly because of the economic downturn. People from economically disadvantaged sections of society have been hit hard due to the lockdown.
The Unified District Information System for Education (UDISE) survey revealed that the total school enrollment in Jammu and Kashmir (1-12th standard) rose to 1,324,301 students, of whom 896,848 students at elementary level (1-8th), 200,843 students at upper secondary level (8th-10th), and 226,610 students at upper secondary level (10th-12th).
On the other hand, the total enrollment in private schools is 1,240,551 students including 833,011 at the primary level, 136,345 and 49,494 students at the secondary and upper secondary level, respectively.
“It’s not the students, even the parents are stressed. We have to respond to requests for our services when we don’t know what lies ahead,” said Naseer Ahmad, a parent.