To curb cheating during viva and practical exams of Classes 10 and 12 of Maharashtra state board exams, flying squads — consisting of education officials and teachers — will conduct random checks on schools and junior colleges.
The state board took up this initiative for the first time after teachers complained of mass cheating and unfair marking being prevalent as schools and colleges want to score the best that they can.
Internal assessments (viva and practical) of the Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC) began on Wednesday and are currently underway, while the Secondary School Certificate (SSC) exams will begin in a couple of weeks. In every subject, internals, which are conducted at the school or college level, carry 20 marks and 80 marks are reserved for written exams conducted at exam centres assigned by the board.
Following this, the board on Wednesday issued a circular stating that flying squads, that had so far been keeping vigil only during written exams, would supervise internal exams, too.
“Flying squads were created seven to eight years ago to keep vigil on the conduct of the written exams under the board’s campaign to reduce malpractices. But there was no mechanism in place to keep an eye on the internal assessments,” said Anil Deshmukh, head of the Maharashtra Junior College Teachers Federation.
“These measures were taken after we received complaints from several teachers groups regarding malpractices in the assessments for IT practical exams,” said KB Patil, board secretary. The examiners would be paid by the college according to the remuneration fixed by the board, the circular added.