The Chambers of Secrets: Results, Education, and the CBSE

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From the medical system to the education system, everything has been completely exposed to vulnerability from the time pandemic has hit this nation. The year of 2020 was a time that people want to erase from their memories and it was this year where students were counting on the system to show them the light. However the road ended on the question of whether the quality of Education was a subject of disparity or if the education is bounded by the deceptive morality?

The country was reeling from the mayhem that was caused by the second wave when the question of lakhs of students’ future was on the line. Even when the country is faced with adversities, it is the strength of the Education system that helps it out of them. Yet, the actions under the worst possible situation suggests otherwise. The class 12th students of the batch of 2020-21 were thrown into the burning flames of their truest nightmares when the education system decided to replace the boards with another evaluating mechanism in view of the pandemic. Well scrapping off the examinations might have been a blessing in disguise for some but it did snatch away the sleep for most. There is no legitimate system that could have replaced the transparency and the coherence of formal examinations. The question here arises, is our nation equipped enough to dwell into an ambiguous method in the “hope” of transparency?

CBSE had apparently released a notice according to which school must not give marks more than the maximum school average of the past 3 years. When a student called up the management regarding an explanation for grading disparities, he was blatantly told that since they needed to maintain an average, marks of some students were reduced to increase the scoring of others. This just exposed the “too good to be true” evaluation pattern.

-Kartik Chauhan, first year student, Hindu College, University of Delhi

The Central Board of Education (CBSE) is one of the largest boards in our country and yet it failed to honour the brightest minds and recognize the ones who needed help. The evaluation system adopted wronged so many students on so many levels. However, not only was the criteria overlooked but apparently the masses have moved on and all is forgotten for the “good”. There was hardly any transparency as to how the marks were awarded to each student. It was as if the marks were just blatantly awarded on the basis of nothing. All that mattered was the school average and the school performance but was this more important than the careers of the thousands?

If a blatant outlook was not enough to release the results, the “under the table” work had a big role to play in jeopardizing the entire educational structure. I personally love to go on a shopping spree but never knew that prestigious marks were for sale at an exquisite price. Not to mention that the deal was that of the janpath and sarojini markets, ‘no bargain, only fixed price’. Students, who are believed to have tender-creative minds, were exposed to the vulnerabilities of gambling. Students, teachers, authorities, each one of them gambled the marks and after all this, aren’t we equipped enough to understand who was always on the winning side.

In conversation with Aashna Belur, a first year student, while pointing out the dirt of this system, stated that some schools took it as far as to compensating their track records for a particular subject. She explained that if the track record of science has been better than humanities, so this year the school bridged a balance by increasing the average of humanities and decreasing the science average. She further added that this in turn would benefit the schools when students take admission in view of such “spectacular” performances. She felt that it is a complete mockery of the education imparted, which in the end is only fuelled by business, profits, and a corrupt regime.

There were students who scored 90 all along, ended up getting a 70 and then there were students who scored 70 but ended up scoring above 95. Moreover, there were students who were consistently a top scorer in a particular subject but ended up getting lower than what they scored which again does not add up.

-Aashna Belur, first year student, Shri Ram College of Commerce, University of Delhi

What irks me is the fact that schools took it to another level in pursuit of their personal gains. From “honest” online examinations to an aid to the salaries, are ethics of education just something to follow theoretically? Is morality just a relative term? When a hard-willed student is asking their mentors to show them a way to survive, they are simply asked for the financial assistance and leave the rest on this “transparent” mechanism. This makes me question the years of hard-work that went into earning the school passing certificate. Was it worth enough to have put in the hours only to pawn it off to a corrupt system?

In conversation with Soumya Arora, a first year student, told DU Beat about the laid-back attitude of the CBSE towards her repeated plea to correct her marks in the final report card. The school “may” have uploaded the wrong marks and wrote several mails to the authorities about the same. Nevertheless, the higher authorities were also ignorant towards the issue. Despite following all the formal protocols, she was left with an abundance of disappointment. Being a student of the University of Delhi now, she ascertained the fact that the pressure this marking scheme had on the tertiary level educational institutions, knew no bounds. This led to an impetuous outlook towards the marks awarded, along with a complete collapse of an honest system.

Feeling totally helpless and drained by the sheer ungracious and casual behavior by the country’s one of the most popular education boards, we wrote an RTI (Right To Information) and even sent a mail to Delhi’s Education Minister, Mr. Manish Sisodia expressing our concern. It has been more than a month since the Delhi colleges have begun and my issue regarding the loss of marks to date stands unresolved. This just makes me worry that if this is the state of our country’s education system now, then I surely don’t know what does the future holds for all the coming generations.

-Soumya Arora, first year student, Jesus and Mary College, University of Delhi

Be it the school or the board, everyone showed how the marks of lakhs of students was least of their concerns. The “financial support” taken by many of our mentors in lieu of our grappling academic situation threw the deserving ones under the bus. When all that mattered to the student was their class 12th marks in order to get into their dream college; all that mattered to the authorities was the question of pride and prestige.

A non-transparent system was placed which pushed the high achievers down to an unwanted rank and the ones who were ought to repeat and rectify themselves have suddenly found a seat at the premier colleges. The guilty pleasure that the country enjoys by forcing everyone into the political scenario is euphorically unexplainable. The ones in power are authorized to shape the nation onto the right path. No activity came to an absolute halt so why did the students’ future suffered? I feel dejected to say, but the question is not about the future of the nation but to serve a temporary satisfaction to the public. It takes only days to change a first page headline to a third page story and so all the dishonest ways were rightly forgotten after awarding the “virtuous” marks.

The students winded up getting crushed under the weight of the undeclared ownership of their marks. When help was needed to heal the wound, a candy stick was offered to shut the whining mouths. These students have cut a big fat cheque in the name of those who promised them an alternative to their “success” but will this achievement take them to newly found heights or would it pierce a hole to show them back on the right track?

Read Also: Think beyond 12th Board Results and Delhi University

Featured Image Credits: Uday Dey via The Times of India

Ankita Baidya

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