In a huge relief to students, all schools in Maharashtra will follow a common school leaving certificate (LC) format from this academic year.
The state school education department on Tuesday issued a government resolution (GR) mandating schools across boards, managements to adopt a uniform format, recently developed by the department.
This is the first time that the government has asked schools to follow a common format. They had prescribed a format but it was not made mandatory.
The format given by the department asks for a student’s details such as nationality, religion and caste, reason for leaving school, remarks on the child’s behaviour and academic performance among others. This will bring about uniformity in the LCs issued by private, government and state, non-state and international boards.
Schools following different format of LC created problems for students while applying for higher education, said education officials. “Some schools don’t ask students to mention their caste in the LC. This makes it difficult for students while seeking admission under quotas at college-level,” said BB Chavan, deputy director of education, Mumbai region.
School principals said it will reduce the hassles in admitting new children. “We always followed a format prescribed by the government but many schools did not. It will be good if all schools stick to one format,” said Savita Venkat, principal, Bombay Cambridge School, Andheri (East).
But, it is unclear whether schools will be allowed to publish their logos on the certificate. “Schools had the freedom to put their own logo and design in the certificate. I don’t know whether we will be allowed to do that now,” said Avnita Bir, principal, RN Podar School, Santacruz.
In Tuesday’s GR, the department said the format has been developed taking into consideration the provisions for admissions stipulated in the Right to Education (RTE) Act, 2009. The RTE stipulates tracking of students moving out of school to ensure that they do not drop out.
After issuing the LCs, schools will need to feed the information on to the state government’s online database, Systematic Administrative Reforms for Achievement of Learning (SARAL). This will help in creating a general register containing information of students in all schools and help track them.