After scoring 91% in her Class 10 board exam, Niharika Khanna was confident of scoring at least 85% in her Class 12 exam. However, on Friday when the Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC) results were announced, the commerce student scored a “disappointing” 79.7%.
“This is so shocking. I put in a lot of effort and was expecting much more. The papers were not that tough, but many students scored below their expectations,” said the HR College student.
Khanna’s gloom was reflected across city colleges, with students wondering why their percentages were so much lower than expected.
Even the state’s pass percentage in the HSC exam fell by almost seven percentage points to 65.61% this year compared to 72.2% last year. The Mumbai division also registered a fall in its pass percentage, with 69.52% this year compared to 70.88% last year.
Explaining the dip, Ujwala Patil, chairperson of the Maharashtra State Board of Secondary and Higher Secondary education, said: “We see this as a consequence of strictness followed at all the exam centres and of disallowing students from indulging in illegal means.”
In the Mumbai division, fewer students scored distinctions (more than 75%) compared to last year. This year, 20,985 (7.04%) students got a distinction compared to 22,380 (7.68%) students last year.
Yet, the Mumbai division had the highest number of distinction holders — way ahead of Pune division, which had 8,119 (3.92%). “The children work hard, parents and teachers are very alert and supportive in Mumbai,” said RR Bhise, secretary of the Mumbai division.
This is the second year of the HSC results being declared online and also of the board not announcing toppers. Principals were not able to access their college results, so it was not clear what the city’s top scorers achieved.
However, the mood was downcast across the city’s most coveted colleges such as Mithibai, Jai Hind, SIES, HR and National College. “Children who got 90s in Class 10 and were expecting the same have got 70s; everyone is very upset,” said Rekha Jagasia principal of Kamla High School and Junior College in Khar.
“I’m not sure why this has happened. The papers seem to have gone well, so everyone’s expectations were higher,” she added.
Ketki Mehta, 17, who missed a 90% in her Class 10 exams by a few marks and was disappointed by her HSC result too.
She scored 77.33%, which was way below her expectations. “I was expecting above 80%, especially since I had scored well in the prelims,” said Mehta, a student of SIES College, Sion. “A lot of people didn’t do as well as they thought they would; most of us are disappointed.”
The lower scores could affect the admission cut-offs.
Across Maharashtra, girls once again followed the established practice by outperforming boys in terms of the pass percentage, with 72.54% compared to 60.62%.
For the Mumbai division —which covers the city, Thane, Raigad — it was the same story with girls achieving a pass percentage of 77.09% and boys 63.56%.
(Inputs by Yogesh Joshi)