To end the stigma attached to students failing board exams, the state school education department on Tuesday decided to drop the word ‘failed’ from the mark sheets of the Secondary School Certificate (SSC) and Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC) exams. It will instead declare a candidate as promoted with ATKT (allowed to keep term), eligible for re-exams or only for skill-development programmes, depending on the number of subjects cleared.
Out of the 16 lakh students, who appear for the Maharashtra state board exams, 2.5 lakh fail every year. The department claims this number has reduced by 1 lakh after schemes such as ATKT and re-exams were introduced.
According to the government resolution issued on Tuesday, the change in the remarks will be reflected in the mark sheets of the students who appear for the SSC, HSC re-exams held in July-August 2016 and February-March 2017. In the Class 10 re-exam results announced on Tuesday , 78, 153 students will be promoted with ATKT, and 24, 332 will be eligible for skill development.
Mark sheets of students failing in one or two subjects in the re-exams, or the February/ March 2017 exams, will state they are promoted for Class 11 with ATKT. Students will be considered ‘eligible for re-exam’ if they fail in three or more subjects in February-March exams and ‘eligible only for skill-development programme’ if they fail re-exams.
Vinod Tawde, education minister, said the move will help in removing prejudice against academically weak students. “The failure tag demoralises them, they lose out on a year and are labelled by the society. A crime report showed that these students then turn to crime,” said Tawde.
Although Tawde had announced the changes last year, they weren’t being implemented. Mark sheets continued to declare students as ‘pass’ or ‘fail’. Even ATKT students’ mark sheets carried the ‘failed’ remark.
“The implementation was delayed as the government was working on providing skill-development programmes. We have now spoken to several polytechnics, which will start the programmes from this year,” Nanda Kumar, principal secretary of the department, said.
The resolution also stated that those who don’t want to opt for skill-development can appear for the exam again. “They can either take the supplementary exam or appear for the February-March exams. It will be entirely be up to the students,” said Kumar.