Even as her friends from the commerce and arts streams are diligently preparing for the HSC exams, for Nikita Wanvari, 19, the board exams will hardly determine her future.
The National College science stream student has her eye on the bigger prize: the Maharashtra Common Entrance Test (CET) that will determine her admission to medical colleges in the state.
“Everyone’s pretty relaxed,” Wanvari said on the eve of the exams.
“The HSC doesn’t matter so much for the competitive exams, so people are taking it lightly. The science students are not really worried.”
The state CETs for engineering and medicine courses are scheduled to take place in May.
For thousands of students appearing for the Class 12 exams this season, the boards are just a stepping stone to the real tests that will determine entry into professional colleges.
And it’s not just the CET aspirants. The IIT-JEE exam and the AIEEE for engineering courses are equally imperative for some, unlike the board exams.
“My mother is worried that I’m neglecting the board exams. I tried explaining to her that it doesn’t really matter,” said Abindandh Bharadwaj, 17, a Class 12 student at RN Podar School in Santacruz, adding that prestige rather than admission, is at stake.
“But even then, we want to do well for personal satisfaction. People wouldn’t be happy if they did badly,” he said.
For some Class 10 students too, the first board exam will be nothing more than a formality, as they have already gotten admission into Class 11 at schools.
“I’ve finished most of my preparation and am taking it easy,” said a student of GD Somani School who did not wish to be named.
“I’ve already got admission into an IB school so the board exam doesn’t really matter for me.”