Parent complains against South Mumbai school for not following ICSE rules, failing class 9 student
Mumbai city news: The child, a student of a Peddar Road school, scored 40 % marks but failed in Economics and Hindimumbai Updated: Jun 19, 2017 23:48 IST
A parent from South Mumbai has complained to the state’s school education department that her child failed in class 9 exam as an ICSE-affiliated school did not conduct internal assessments according to the board’s rules.
The child, a student of a Peddar Road school, scored 40 % marks but failed in Economics and Hindi. The school authorities said they decided to detain her in class 9 as she had been performing poorly for the last five years.
Crying foul, the student’s parent said the school only held one written test when the board rules state that students should be marked based on assignments/project work, practical and course work. The parent said, “My kid has undergone a lot of trauma and this has taken a toll on her confidence.”
The complaint says this student and four others were detained in class 9 “without being provided an opportunity to avail the provisions the education department provides viz. remedial classes, re-test, and internal assessment.”
The school had made the parent sign an undertaking last year stating that the parent would admit the student in another school if the performance in exams is not up to the mark. The education officials said schools cannot take such undertakings.
The school said, “We made a lot of efforts to improve the student’s performance, but we realised that she would not pass even with grace marks. She is not academically weak, but has behavioural issues. Taking all this into consideration, we decided to fail her.”
The school principal said, “The board doesn’t say that a written exam is not part of internal assessments.We conducted other assessments but didn’t include those marks in the final score.”
“Internal assessments must include projects, assignments, assessment of speaking and listening skills. They can’t only be in the form of a written exam,” said Gerry Arathoon, chief of the Council of Indian School Certificate of Examination.
‘Schools fail students to fare better in boards’
Educationists say many Mumbai schools fail Class 9 students to betters its Class 10 results.
They added that schools take this step without providing the students with any appropriate remedial help. Though the education department has noticed this trend, but it has failed to curb the practice.
One of the major reasons is lack of supervision. Even though the Right to Education (RTE) Act, 2009, emphasises on schools identifying academically weak students and working towards improving their performance, in reality, few schools plan any substantial interventions for such students.
In most schools, remedial classes are just a free period in which students are asked to complete their homework. “Schools are mistaking self-study or supervised study for remedial classes. There should be extra classes for weak students,” said a teacher from a South Mumbai school.
A principal of a Mazgaon school said, “Internal assessments, remedial classes should be conducted throughout the year.” However, some schools said holding remedial classes is expensive. “For remedial lessons, teachers expect to be paid separately for the extra-time they put in. Often parents don’t co-operate and don’t want to pay for it. How much can a school do in such a situation?,” said Perin Bagli, principal, Activity High School, Peddar Road.