Several heads of schools met Partha Chatterjee

Kolkata

KOLKATA: A delegation of nine heads of schools including minority institutions called upon education minister Partha Chatterjee at the Bidhan Sabha on Friday at 3:30pm. They placed their problems with regard to the latest CISCE diktat to introduce two new compulsory exams in classes V and VIII. Section of the authorities also complained that the Council has also made it mandatory for all affiliated schools to follow a curriculum from pre-school onwards which was till now left to the institutes and thus offered a lot of flexibility.

“We are also objecting to the additional fee not only for the test but also for the mandatory teacher’s training program which will have to be attended by all teachers and which the council will charge from the school. We are also objecting to the mandatory training that every teacher has to undergo. It will put unnecessary pressure on them. The academic calendar might be affected,” said a principal.

He added, “although the council has clarified that this will be only a diagnostic tool and not bearing any impact on the promotions yet the children vie for marks. Knowing that it is from the council the parents as well as students are bound to get stressed.”

The team while meeting Chatterjee also pointed out that the time allotted to co-curricular activities will also get shortened if the children are subjected to more tests.

Partha Chatterjee

“The minister has assured us to look into the matter and take it up with the council,” said a source.

On June 2, heads of 30 minority schools met, a lot of issues were discussed and they voiced grievances and alleged the council of making arbitrary policy.
Some of the reasons put forwarded by the Anglo-Indian schools in June 2 meeting included the constant questions from anxious guardians about the examinations and the fear of additional stress on students. “We only want to prepare the students for the ICSE and ISC. The children are very raw at this stage. How can we give them more stress?” questioned concerned principals.

Even if the council tries to reduce tension by saying the examinations will be styled on MCQ-type questions and results not bearing on promotions, parents will still want their children to secure the best scores. As a result, there is a possibility that students will be sent to tuition more, some of the principals had opined.

 A section of the parents has already approached school authorities requesting them to take their message forward and requested them to inform the council to review its policy.
The council said the students will be tested on four subjects –English, mathematics, social studies and science. The board will prepare reports on each subject for every student (it may be in the format of comments and not marks) and hand these over to the council, school and parents.
CISCE has also assured that the students won’t require additional preparation for these exams, which will be aptitude-based. The objective of the exams is to check that schools are following the prescribed curriculum, to assess the success and weakness of the syllabus and shed light on quality of teaching.

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