From the coming academic year — 2017-18 — students excelling in drawing, classical and folk arts will receive 10 to 25 extra marks in the Secondary School Certificate (SSC) much like students who play sports.
The state’s school education department on Saturday issued a government resolution (GR) stating that students proficient in the visual and performing arts will be awarded additional marks from the March 2018 exam onwards.
The concept of assigning additional marks started with the Maharashtra government introducing marks for sports in 2011. While it was discontinued three years later citing cases of fake certificates submitted by students, it made a comeback in the SSC exams last year. It was one of the reasons that led to scores shooting up to 100% in a few cases.
Allaying fears of excessive inflation of marks owing to sports and arts marks, the GR added that the add-on marks awarded to each student will not exceed beyond 25 in any circumstance, even if the child is gifted in sports and arts.
“Along with sportspersons, students skilled in drawing and classical arts should get a chance to use their talent to march ahead in the future,” said Suvarna Kharat, deputy secretary of the department.
Adding that folk arts uplift the society, Kharat said, “It is equally necessary to encourage students taking part in folk arts. Many children spend their school life devoted to these arts.”
Separate guidelines have been formulated to award the marks to students across different fields.
Those who have studied classical dance, drama and singing for a minimum of five years from a government-approved institution, and passed five exams in that art, will be given 15 marks. Those passing three exams will get 10 marks. Winners of national and state-level tournaments or scholarships in these arts will be handed out a total of 25 marks.
In the absence of any formal exams for folk arts, students having 50 performances to their name from Classes 8 to 10 will get 10 marks and those with 25 performances will receive five marks.
Students bagging the top-three positions in the state organised children’s theatre competition in Classes 8 to 10 will receive 5 to 10 marks, depending on their rank. Child artists winning national awards for acting, anytime in their school years, between Class 1 and Class 10, will get 10 marks, while state award winners will get five marks.
The GR has asked societies and institutions pursuing folk arts to prepare a curriculum for folk arts. The department of cultural affairs will approve the curriculum so that in the future pupils studying it will be eligible for 20 marks, depending on the number of exams they pass.
Students securing A grade in the intermediate drawing exam will be award 15 marks, B and C graders will get 10 and 5 marks. From the next academic year, students passing this exam will also be eligible for 2% reservation for cultural quota.