At a time when class 12 students are busy preparing for their upcoming board exams, aspirants of health science courses have a bigger problem to worry about. Registrations to the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) have been delayed by six weeks and the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) is still dilly-dallying on details of the final syllabus to be considered for the exam.
“Our schedule is ready but we need the final go ahead from all authorities to publish the same. A statement will be released in a day,” said a spokesperson for CBSE.
Meanwhile, parents are worried that this year’s medical admissions process might be similar to that in 2016, when students ended up giving the exam based on an entirely different syllabus as NEET was introduced in the last minute. “The CBSE board had more than a year to clear all doubts and after last year’s chaos, the least they could have done is made the process hassle free for students this year,” said Sudha Shenoy, one of the parents. She added that parents from across the state and country are now coming together to put across their grievances in front of the government. Parents from Maharashtra are also approaching Prime Minister Narendra Modi for help in streamlining the medical admission process.
NEET was first introduced in 2013, when Maharashtra scrapped their own medical entrance test. Based on a petition filed at the Supreme Court, in 2014, NEET was scrapped by SC and the state conducted its own CET based on the NEET syllabus, while in 2015 the MH-CET was conducted on the basis of state board syllabus. In April 2016, however, the Supreme Court once again lifted the ban on NEET and proposed to conduct admissions to MBBS, BDS and post-graduate courses through this one common test. CET for medical admissions has since been scrapped in Maharashtra.
“There’s been a lot of talks as to how the delay is happening because the board agreed to conduct NEET in eight different languages, whereas the study material available is only in English and Hindi. But this they should have thought through earlier, not now,” said another parent. Exams for most class 12 students will begin in the last week of February and parents are also worried that they’ll end up with a different portion for NEET just when students will be busy with their board exams.