On Friday, a day after the SSC results were announced, a few students of Mahim’s Bombay Scottish School were huddled anxiously outside a courtroom at the Bombay High Court.
The court adjourned the hearing of the case challenging the state’s Best-Five policy to June 22 and continued the stay on junior college admissions.
Like the Scottish students, several other ICSE students are worried that the spate of soaring scores of SSC students will jeopardise their chances at securing a seat at one of their preferred junior colleges in the city.
This is the third consecutive year that the ICSE students have approached the court to challenge state policies that work to their disadvantage.
“Naturally if they are counting seven subjects for us but just five subjects for SSC, the cut-offs will rise and it’s us (ICSE students) who will be harmed,” said Sanya Parikh (15), a student of Jamnabai Narsee School, who plans to join junior college and switch to the HSC board.
School principals too, are alarmed by the SSC results, and fear this may affect ICSE students.
“It is really unbelievable how so many SSC students have suddenly scored so well,” said Perin Bagli, principal of Activity School on Gamadia Road and secretary of the Association of ICSE Schools in Maharashtra. “It’s very disappointing for us also because we never knew that these extra marks for sports would be added.”
Many students have scored a perfect 100 per cent through extra marks for playing a sport at the state level.
The high court will now hear the matter on Tuesday.
Schools and students are also concerned that the admissions process to junior colleges will be delayed further.
“It’s a problem that admissions are getting delayed, terms will be short and studies will be affected,” said Janvi Thosani (15) of Lilavatibai Podar School and the all-India ICSE topper.
The principal of HVB Academy, Dr CR Pathak, raised another point concerning admission delays. “If the court says extend the Best-Five scheme to ICSE as well then admissions will get delayed because the government hasn’t prepared the software to take the best five marks of these students,” she said. “And if they scrap it for SSC there will be as much delay because at the moment the software only aggregates the best five subjects.”