Mumbai schools to hold exams before and after Diwali vacation

While written tests will be concluded before the holidays, practical and internal exams will be conducted once the schools reopen

Citing the number of public holidays, upcoming Assembly elections and Diwali vacation, several city schools have decided to conduct practical and internal exams once the institutes reopen after the vacation period. However, written exams would be concluded before Diwali.

“At the beginning of the academic year, the education department had clarified on the number of public holidays we’ll be having based on which we chalked out the exam schedule. However, with the sudden announcement of the elections, we had to rework the schedule. We realised that it is impossible to finish the portion and conduct all exams before Diwali vacation,” said Rekha Shahani, principal of Kamla High School, Khar.

Representational pic

She added that even the internal training session for the teachers would be held on October 16, a day after the elections.

“We can’t cancel the training session either, so we decided to conduct vivas and other internal examinations after the vacation. This will prevent disruption of the holiday,” Shahani said.

Some schools have gone one step further and decided to compromise with the first semester portion by pushing the completion of the syllabus in the coming semester.

This means questions pertaining to the pending portion will not be asked during the exams.

“There are a lot of compromises that we need to make in order to accommodate changes to our schedule,” Fr Francis Swamy, coordinator of Jesuit Schools of Mumbai, said.

He added that internal and science practical exams at the St Xavier’s Boys School at Dhobi Talao would be held post-Diwali vacation.

Earlier the better
While most schools are planning to conduct exams in two phases, there are a few institutes that intend to conclude them before the holidays. To do so, these schools are conducting extra classes on Saturdays to finish the portion for the current semester.

Commenting on the issue, a senior official from the office of the deputy director of school education said, “Since the date for election was announced suddenly, schools were forced to change their schedules. Therefore, we gave them a free hand to conduct exams as per their convenience. The only criterion is that they have to wind up the entire portion before the conclusion of the current academic year.”

Unhappy vacation

Rajneesh Duggal, a PTA member from a suburban school, said, “Having exams right after the vacation period means that children won’t be enjoying their holidays to the fullest. Also, there are chances that children may not take the exams seriously. Hopefully, schools will handle this issue intelligently.” 

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