Results of the ongoing Secondary School Certificate (SSC) and Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC) exams could be delayed, as examiners and moderators have either boycotted or slowed down the assessment process. The decision was taken last week, after talks between the agitating teachers and state school education minister Vinod Tawde did not yield any results.
The teachers have been demanding approval of salaries for new teachers, government aid for schools and resolution of problems with the new online staff approval system.
From Wednesday, more than 60,000 examiners and moderators started checking HSC answer sheets, but as a sign of protest, only they will take up only one answer-sheet a day. The HSC exams, which began from February 21, are drawing to a close and papers have started piling up for assessment. The SSC exams began on March 3 and the answer papers are not being corrected at all.
“Usually, we correct 25 to 30 papers every day, but this time we will do it at a snail’s pace – only one paper a day,” said Anil Deshmukh, secretary, Maharashtra State Federation of Junior College Teachers. “The longer we continue the boycott, the results will be delayed for that much longer.”
The federation announced the boycott as none of their demands were fulfilled by Monday, which was the deadline they had given to the government. “Although after we protested last year, the government approved the posts of many of our teachers, no financial provision has yet been made to pay them salaries,” said Deshmukh. “Until the government fulfils this and other demands, we will not withdraw the boycott.”
The federation said the boycott will continue indefinitely, till the government cancels a third-party committee appointed for rechecking the proposals of schools selected for receiving government aid.
While senior education department officials said the school education department has started looking into the demands of the teachers, board authorities said they will ensure that the results are not affected by the protest. “We are confident that the matter will be resolved by the government soon,” said Siddheshwar Chandekar, secretary of the Mumbai division of the state board. “Results will be out on time, we will make the examiners and moderators work doubly hard to do so.”
Last year, the SSC results were declared on June 17, while HSC results were announced on June 2.