Sunday, May 17, 2015

No More Exams, O Boy!


CBSE has decided to do away with Board exams in class 10.  This is what the latest decision is:

I Scheme 1– there shall be no Board Examination at Secondary (Class X) level for students studying in the schools affiliated to the Board who do not wish to move out of the CBSE system after Class X.
Every School, Sahodaya Cluster or City may design its own date sheet for classes IX and X School Based Examination accordingly.

II Scheme 2 – is applicable to those students from affiliated schools who wish to move out of the CBSE system after Class X (Pre-University, Vocational course, Change of Board etc). Such students are required to take the Board’s External Examination at Secondary (Class X) level.
Question papers and Marking Scheme will be prepared by the CBSE and evaluation will be carried out by the Board through External Examiners.

Wow!  Don’t have to study anymore.

I have been teaching in a CBSE school for the last 14 years.  I have watched the change in the attitudes of students from the time CBSE made it easier for the students with decisions like making the Board exams optional in class 10 and introducing silly policies like CCE which were meant to make every student pass irrespective of his/her merit.  The students took everything lightly.  Only a few students wanted to learn anything seriously.  Those who were interested only in getting on with life somehow (which means passing to the next class, for a student) became a headache for the teachers.  And the teachers’ headache was aggravated by the management which chose to put all the blame for everything on the teachers.  The parents also loved to pass the buck to the teachers.  The judiciary banged its gavel on the heads of the teachers again and again with perverted pleasure by passing certain laws which effectually made the teachers the servants of the students. 

CBSE has done too much damage to the profession of teaching.  The profession has been converted into a kind of prostitution.  Consequently respectable people choose to stay away from the profession.  Helplessness is what prompts anyone to take to teaching now.

What can be done?

1.     Teaching is an art and it requires people who have the art in their veins.  Encourage them by all means.
2.     Do away with the present qualifying degrees and diplomas and tests (from the old B.Ed. to the latest CTET) and conduct a one-year course for aspiring teachers which will assess the aptitudes of the aspirants and then go on to work on those aptitudes after requesting the others to look for other jobs that suit them.
3.     Ensure that schools have proper administrative staff.  Presently those who fail in teaching profession seem to become administrators.
4.     Ban industrialists from establishing schools unless they are subjected to severe psychometric tests and found insane.   [Insane, I repeat.]
5.     Keep politicians as far away from schools as possible.  [Even if they are proved to be insane.]
6.     Keep religion out of the school. [Religion is too sane to involve itself with education.]

Exams won't be required if these suggestions are implemented.  

Am I serious?  I am.  I have qualified the psychometric test for insanity.


26 comments:

  1. Finally, someone said the truth! Soon after finishing by Masters, I worked as a teacher for a few months and, I can relate to each and every word of you. "Teaching is an art", couldn't agree more... :-) Kudos to you Sir, for this post....

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    Replies
    1. It's high time the authorities took schooling seriously. A lot of reforms are required.

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  2. Sometimes I think present system of education including reforms being added time to time also has some subtle planning from in and outside forces to weaken the brilliance of children.Because these are future stuff ....!

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    Replies
    1. It kills creativity and initiative, though the professed objectives are the opposite.

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  3. Sir, you have come up with a very important issue with our education system. There is both good and bad side of exams in school. But it has its own usefulness. Eliminating exams on 10th standard (in general) is something I cannot support from the heart. Making students pass irrespective of their merits is something I believe encourage this attitude you have already pointed out - there are students who are interested only in "getting on with life somehow" - and this could affect students' morale and spirit. Will it not rather degrade the standard of education for the coming generations? Because these students might opt for teaching jobs later in their life and what will they deliver when their basics are not strong and morals are not high?

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    Replies
    1. An unexamined life is likely to become worthless eventually. Especially young people need assessment and other motivation.

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  4. Well written sir.
    Majority of the people before becoming B.Ed try everything else like medicine, engineering, etc etc.
    Securing a B.Ed admission / degree or Teacher job is the easiest task in India now.
    Becoming a teacher is the last and easy resort for many.
    One should not become a teacher just by 'chance' but by 'choice'.

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    Replies
    1. Worse, private schools pay teachers a pittance reducing the dignity of the profession.

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  5. Very nicely put. I agree, there is merit in appearing for exams and passing competitive exams, it may not say everything about the person but it does give us an idea about the abilities of the person...doing away with exams...certainly not a good idea. I think it may be helpful to update/upgrade the syllabus and add subjects like soft skills, and other relevant subjects that will help students...and that is any subject but this practice of doing away with exams will definitely not help in the long run.

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    Replies
    1. It is beyond normal comprehension why CBSE has taken this decision when the consequences of similar favours in the past have been disastrous.

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  6. As a nation we are running on luck!!

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    Replies
    1. True, Roohi. How long will it last is my fear.

      Delete
  7. Very nice points raised in this post. If the issue is stress among students, address that. Instead, policy is doing away with board exams. So now, you have no exams (and supposedly no stress) till the 12th (at least this is true in Delhi), when your life is decided by a single board exam. What kind of logic is this? Also, the way the education system is headed, we are creating a generation of young people who will have no idea what it is like to be evaluated every single day, on every single assignment, in a competitive high stress environment, once they take up a job. As far removed from reality as possible.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is one of the many harms we've done to the young generation. We've made it too easy for them in too many places. We can expect a future society that will make irrational demands from others, a society of egotists.

      Delete
  8. This is not how we would want the future to be shaped as...
    You've raised a proper point. I'm afraid our education system has been degrading due to such stupid rules.
    Also on a funny note, i did like the last line a lot..

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Too many people claiming expertise have brought about this comical situation. If they are sane, I cannot but think of myself as insane.

      Delete
  9. I have studied under CBSE Board until my Class X. In fact I have not even received my board exam results until now (but have started schooling under WBCHSE from this year for a few reasons). I never had problems with examinations or the concept of Board Exams.Only they were very scary,owing to my ambitiousness and subsequent exam phobia.I disagree with the idea (err......decision) to stop Board Exams.Already CBSE gives two upgradations in Grades in the Scholastic part if you have excellent performance in two co-curricular activities.This silly westernisation will only hamper the mentality of the students.

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    Replies
    1. There are many other ways of handling stress and related issues. If a mountaineer feels threatened by the altitude, we won't reduce the height of the mountain, will we?

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    2. No,that exactly is my point of view.
      I do not support this decision. The stress related issue is particularly even more intense in case of me,that is a personal case.
      I shifted to WBCHSE this year because I was not getting the combination I was searching for (Eco-Stat) in CBSE schools here.
      I have seen the attitude of careless students studying under CBSE and it can be very irritating more than anything else.I do not know why they are contributing so much in creating a worthless human resource base.

      Delete
  10. Very good post. My son is in CBSE and what you said about attitudes is very true. A lack of interest, a portion which is too lengthy, clubbing subjects like History and geography, Civics and Economics into one paper, has taken the interest out of the subject itself. All focus is on Science and Maths. And the child is just looking at passing out of the exam with no knowledge. Sad state indeed.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Social science as such tends to challenge students more than other subjects. The subject can be made interesting by relating the topics with day to day life. Exam may not be the ideal solution in that case.

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    2. This is so true.Though I love Maths as a subject,Social Science is no doubt my second favourite and obviously comes before Science to me.Students who are not eligible to study Science go for Science,students who are not at all eligible for Social Sciences go for it.I do not know why Social Science is considered 'duller than Science'.Not to mention that it is not inferior than any other subject people opt to study.And of course,most of them know nothing about Social Sciences,nor current affairs,neither incidents that happened in the past or something that shaped civilisation in the way it exists today.All that evolution seems to signify is how chimpanzees and human beings originated from a common ancestor.This is truly a very frustrating condition.

      Delete
    3. This is so true.Though I love Maths as a subject,Social Science is no doubt my second favourite and obviously comes before Science to me.Students who are not eligible to study Science go for Science,students who are not at all eligible for Social Sciences go for it.I do not know why Social Science is considered 'duller than Science'.Not to mention that it is not inferior than any other subject people opt to study.And of course,most of them know nothing about Social Sciences,nor current affairs,neither incidents that happened in the past or something that shaped civilisation in the way it exists today.All that evolution seems to signify is how chimpanzees and human beings originated from a common ancestor.This is truly a very frustrating condition.

      Delete
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    ReplyDelete
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  13. Interesting article! Thank you for sharing them! I hope you will continue to have similar posts to share with everyone. Steve Rogers Blue Jacket

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