CBSE 12th Exam 2021 cancelled: State Boards are also cancelling the class 12 board exams.

CBSE 12th Exam 2021 cancelled: State Boards are also cancelling the class 12 board exams.

2nd June’21, Wednesday: The pandemic has brought some unprecedented changes no one could foresee. It stalled years and years of progress and posed insurmountable challenges to every field of life. The education sector is no such exception to this pandemic. Especially, at the school level, the disruption caused by the pandemic is immeasurable with far-reaching effects.

But despite all challenges, the human race never seems to faze or halt but keeps on finding new ways to deal with the challenges. And yet again, education is no exception to such invariable changes in relation to time and situation. And with uncertainty clouding the schools and colleges regarding classes and examinations for a long time, it was about time we came to a consensus to avoid stagnation and keep forging ahead.

One such consensus that was reached on the 1st of June’21 is the decision to scrap the CBSE class 12 board exams. This has come after much deliberation over the fact that is the situation conducive enough to hold the CBSE Class XII board exam all over the country? With the second wave still being rampant in many parts of the country, there is no telling how long this Pandemic will drag on. And therefore, to comfort the students, give them and the school administrations a way forward, it was finally decided to scrap the exam.

This announcement has preceded various protests by the students, parents and teachers alike over the last many months. It was during those months that the decision was made to cancel the CBSE class 10 exams. In two months now, Class XII has also been cancelled.

The decision was made after Prime Minister Narendra Modi held a meeting with several high-profile ministers including Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, I&B Minister Prakash Javedkar, Minister of Women and Child Development Smriti Irani and the Ministry of Home Affairs Amit Shah. Union Minister of Education, Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank was unable to attend the meeting as he was hospitalized due to post-covid complications.

While announcing the decision, PM Narendra Modi said that the GOI has decided to cancel the Class XII CBSE Board Exams after extensive consultation. A student-friendly decision in light of the recent events, PM Modi reiterates that the step is to safeguard the health as well as the future of our youth. PM Modi has also stressed that the uncertainties regarding the CBSE Class XII exam have posed a lot of stress, anxiety and pressure among the students, parents & teachers which had to be put to an end and it is unfair for the students to appear for the exam in these stressful times. PM Modi has urged all the stakeholders to be sensitive towards the students going forward.

While this news has been welcomed warmly by the students, this has also raised concerns among the others as to “How will the result be calculated?” and “How will it affect the admission process for the colleges?”

The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) and CISCE will be releasing the criteria for assessment. The government has ensured that the criteria will be “well-defined” and “objective” to achieve timely results. Many models of assessment were discussed, however, the most feasible one is based on the performance of the students in the previous year.

The schools were asked to submit the performance of the students in classes 9, 10 & 11 latest by 7th June’21. It is expected that the final marks of class 12 will be counted based on the last three years of performance. A final decision on this is still awaited.

As per the official statements of both ICSE and CBSE, they have announced that the criteria will be similar to that of class 10 and students unhappy with their marks can reappear for the exam at a later date when the situation seems conducive.

The next hearing of the case on seeking cancellation of board exams will be heard by the Supreme Court on 3rd June and that is when we can expect a few more confirmations regarding the same. Now, the Supreme Court has turned its attention towards the state boards and has asked the state boards to take a uniform approach and decision. Of those, Gujarat and Maharashtra have already decided to cancel the class XII exams but have asked the Central Govt to take care of the students so as not to impact their future dreams and aspirations.

What are the options discussed?

During the meeting, CBSE officials along with the PM, have discussed several options suggesting holding the exams between July 15 and August 26. Of them, two are the most prominent.

  • Option A: Choice to hold exams only for major subjects.
  • Option B: Choice to hold exams in a new format with only short answer type questions.

Other options like conducting the Class XII exams twice a year are also being discussed and analysed. More on this soon to follow.