Jammu : Board examinations for Class 3 and 5 students? That’s what the Jammu and Kashmir government is thinking of introducing in order to improve education standards even as the central government has proposed to abolish Class 10 exams conducted by state education boards.
While most teachers are aghast at the suggestion, saying it will increase the burden on little children, the education department believes holding more board examinations will help improve results in government schools and make teachers accountable.
“It has been proposed that these examinations should be held at the level of Class 3 and 5 with the aim of making teachers accountable for the results and also raising the standards of students,” a senior officer of the education department told IANS on condition of anonymity.
Education Minister Peerzada Mohammad Sayeed, who had disagreed with union Human Resource Development Minister Kapil Sibal’s proposal to abolish Class 10 students, had pledged that he would take measures to make “teachers accountable”.
“This step is in that direction,” the official said.
In state-run schools, results are poor and the dropout rate is high while private schools have been doing exceedingly well.
Private schools and their managements have come out against this “draconian” proposal.
“How can you expect a third standard student to face board examinations? It would be a punishment for the students – weighing them down psychologically,” said Tilak Raj, a teacher in a private school in the walled city of Jammu.
“If it (the government) is having problems with its own system and schools, it should restrict such absurd practices to their schools,” the teacher said.
Another teacher in a private school, Hem Raj Sharma, pointed out that there is a vast gap in teaching standards in government and private schools.
He said the government should undertake a survey on why it’s so, instead of doing something that would have an adverse effect on the minds of young children, as most students in Class 3 are eight or nine years of age.
“We deliver good results; why are we being asked to do so?” he asked.
Government school teachers are also unhappy over the move. “Instead of improving standards, these may further decline, as students of this tender age are unable to go through the rigours of board examination,” a government school principal said on condition of anonymity.