City schools affiliated to the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) have put their annual exams for Classes 1 to 9 on hold till the board announces the Class 12 and 10 exam timetable. The board exam schedule, which is usually declared in the first week of January, has been delayed this year, because of the forthcoming state assembly elections.
Without knowing the board exam dates, the schools are unable to plan their own year-end exams. School exams for Classes 1 to 9 are held in the same month as the board exams of Class 10 and 12 in February-March every year. So to avoid a clash between the two, schools generally plan their own exams before or after the board exams.
“Our school exam depends on the board exam timetable but we haven’t received any word from the board yet,” said Deepshikha Srivastava, principal, Rajhans Vidyalaya, Andheri, which acts as a centre for CBSE exams. Srivastava added that usually, they start home exams by the end of February and try to finish it before the board exam begins or hold some papers in between the gaps in the exam. “We have to start the new academic year by April.”
Adding that this year, they have decided not to plan their school exam schedule until the board releases its timetable, Srivastava said, “Both the exams should not clash especially for English and math papers, as the number of students appearing for these subjects tends to be huge.”
Teachers and students are also worried that practical exam dates too have not been decided yet, these tests are usually held between January and February. “We hope that the timetable is declared soon so that students get sufficient time to prepare for the exams,” said Avnita Bir, principal, RN Podar School, Santacruz.
Principals fear that board exams might be postponed this year because of the elections. On Thursday, the Council of Indian School Certificate Examination (CISCE) had said that they too will reschedule their ICSE and ISC exams due to the polls.
“Since there are many CBSE schools in the north, exams might be held later than usually to avoid clash with the elections in Punjab and Uttar Pradesh,” said Ganesh Parmeswaran, principal, Bal Bharti School, Kharghar. “If that happens, it will affect school exams too,” he said.