UNPREDICTABLE FUTURE?

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UNPREDICTABLE FUTURE?

Wednesday, 09 June 2021 | MUSBA HASHMI

UNPREDICTABLE FUTURE?

The cancellation of Class XII Boards has received mixed reactions. MUSBA HASHMI speaks to experts and students about what the decision means and its implications

The cancellation of Class XII Boards  have brought relief to many students, while anxiety to some. With one confusion being cleared, several others have popped up. What happens to my college admission? Can I still go abroad to study? These are some of the questions that must have popped up in every student’s mind at least once.

Dr Glen Besterfield, Dean of Admissions, University of South Florida tells you that the cancellation is of special significance to students who have applied to foreign universities as they may otherwise have had to put their plans on hold as they would have ended up missing important deadlines and mandatory enrolment requirements.

“In the context of American universities where the Fall semester begins in August, by now students would have already got admission offers from them. Some may be conditional pending their Class XII results, but several universities, including ours, have already admitted students from India — and awarded many of them scholarships — for the Undergraduate programme starting in Fall 2021, based on Class X Board exams and marks through Class XI,” he says.

He adds that their university need the Class XII transcripts and a high school completion certificate to finalise this admission and confirm their enrolment.  So, if the exams or the results had been delayed, they would not have been able to enroll and would have missed their scholarship too as it is not transferable to the next semester (Spring – January). This gives you an idea of how much this decision means for students going abroad for further studies.

While, for foreign universities the decision has brought in clarity, but for Indian colleges and universities, it has opened a plethora of confusion. Rohit Jain, CEO and Co-Founder DUX Education, says that now we need a ready plan for how the university admissions will happen. “This has to be done quickly. Students are still hanging mid-air since they have zero clarity on what is to happen next. At DUX we do our bit by organising a one-hour session every day where our experts speak to the students and parents on what they should be doing now,” Jain tells you.

 Prof Dr Deependra Kumar Jha, Vice Chancellor at Adamas University, says: “Given the current uncertainty, the decision to cancel the Class XII Board exams is perhaps an appropriate one. I hope the board results will be calculated in an objective and comprehensive manner as far as possible. This decision will help streamline the academic calendar to some extent and reduce anxiety among students, parents, and teachers.”

He adds that the admission process will gain momentum as the focus of students and parents will shift from Board exams to choice of college or university. It serves as a ray of hope in these times of helplessness.

Shishir Dixit, Founder & Director, Centurion Defence Academy, tells you that students should not be disappointed and should view this situation as an experience.

“The situation is that we should not be disappointed or negatively affected by it and that we should instead view it as a great experience. Students with potential can still have a bright career path ahead. They can put their talents and expertise to good use because they were already studying for board exams. Because they have theoretical knowledge, they can brush up on their skills for competitive tests. They can pursue a variety of job options,” he opines.

Krishna Thakur, a student of SLS DAV Public School, feels that every decision needs proper planning and questions if this one falls in the list.

“The cancellation was inevitable, but the negative effects of this move could have been avoided if the boards and Government could have done their jobs planning backup options beforehand. The solutions discussed within CBSE either includes internal assessment or cumulative markings of previous three years, but the issue with both is we didn’t know that a school test held two years ago will play a major role in your chances of getting your favourite college,” he says.

Thakur adds that every school conducted the online examinations differently last year. “Some kept open the scope of cheating, while others were strict enough to eliminate even the slightest chance of the use of any unfair means. With this level of non-uniformity in schools and miscommunication, it will be not less than a crime with students,” he opines.

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