Union Education Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal on Monday chaired a review meeting to discuss management of the education system during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Keeping in view the effect of ongoing COVID-19 pandemic on the education of school students, Union Education Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal on Monday chaired a review meeting with the education secretaries of states and UTs to discuss various measures adopted for the management of the education system during COVID, strategies adopted for online and offline learning in schools so far and also sought suggestions from the states on the class 12 board exams.
After the cancellation of Class 10 board examination and announcement of new marking policy, a section of students are demanding a similar marking strategy to be adopted for Class 12th as well.
According to officials, Pokhriyal discussed the issue of pending class 12 board exams which has left the class 12 students hanging in the air. CBSE has already announced that a review on Class 12 board exams will be done on or after June 1 and a decision will be taken on the pending board exams.
The education minister in the meeting stated that despite the pandemic, the Centre and the states, as well as agencies like the National Testing Agency (NTA), have managed to deliver education online as well as conduct public exams such as JEE and NEET-UG.
“Our efforts and commitment ensured continuance of education for 240 million students enrolled in our schools and colleges. We have been successful in transforming our homes into classrooms in these unprecedented times. We have also set an example of ensuring that no student faced a year loss,” he said.
“The second wave has forced the education institutions to remain close for a longer period. While we have ensured that students are learning at home through various initiatives, we should focus on the needs of the aspirational districts where there is a digital gap so that we can empower the local bodies, NGOs and the parents and teachers,” he further added..
Minister of State for Education Sanjay Dhotre stressed on exploring ways to provide hybrid education comprising both offline and online teaching methods.
“For this we would need new learning methodologies, quality learning content and evaluation assessment model. The scientific temperament of students will play a deciding role in post COVID world therefore education system of our country should focus on developing critical thinking ability, logical reasoning ability and scientific temper among students,” he said.
Schools across the country were closed in March last year to contain the spread of COVID-19 ahead of a nationwide lockdown. Several states started reopening the schools partially from October last year, but physical classes were again suspended because of the rise in coronavirus cases.
Last year, the board exams had to be postponed mid-way in March due to the lockdown imposed in the wake of rising COVID-19 cases. They were later cancelled and the results were announced based on an alternative assessment scheme. Now the Class 12th students are hopeful that the government might consider their plight and announce the cancellation of Class 12th board exams like last year.
India’s COVID-19 tally mounted to 2,49,65,463 on Monday with 2,81,386 fresh cases, the lowest in 27 days, while the death toll climbed to 2,74,390 as 4,106 more people succumbed to the disease, according to Union health ministry data.
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