Over four million matric and intermediate students in Punjab are facing ambiguity over the delay of the schedule of the annual exams because of the differences between the Punjab Boards Committee of Chairmen (PBCC) and the Education Ministry.
The PBCC issued the date sheet for the fifth time on Thursday to conduct physical exams, while a faction of students is still demanding online assessments.
Meanwhile, the private school associations have also expressed dissatisfaction over the ministry and the committee’s decision regarding the marks formula for the exams.
Continuous changes in the exam schedule from the PBCC have kept millions of students enrolled with boards of intermediate and secondary education (BISEs) in a quandary.
According to official figures, some 2.6 million students are enrolled in grades nine and 10, while 2.4 million are in grades 11 and 12 in the province. These students have yet to be given one final schedule for exams that are set to start within three weeks.
According to the new schedule decided during a PBCC meeting in Sargodha, the board exams will commence on July 10.
To calm down the protesting students, the committee has decided to conduct exams for elective subjects, while the marks for compulsory subjects will also be awarded on this basis.
However, a large number of students, most of them from public schools, are still not ready for exams, demanding them to be delayed by at least three months as their courses had not been completed.
While both the education ministry and the PBCC are adamant to hold exams next month, the President of the Private Schools Management Associations, Kashif Adeeb Jawdani, has come out in support of students’ demands.
“We think that the students’ demands are justified and besides this, we are also concerned because the PBCC earlier issued the exam schedule four times. We don’t want the future of even a single student jeopardized, so the education ministry should consult all stakeholders.”
Adeeb Jawdani pointed out that classes have not been held for a long period in several districts due to the coronavirus lockdown and feared that a large number of students from such areas might fail in the exams if their concerns were not heeded.