Maharashtra state issues circular for schools to conduct competency exam

Mar 14, 2018, 11:47 IST | Pallavi Smart

A new circular has been issued asking schools to conduct the tests on an individual level, instead of having the state conducting them uniformly across Maharashtra

Representational Image
Representational Image

Having proven themselves as massively expensive and incompetent, the state education department's hyped competency tests will now be stopped on the state level. But they will continue on the school level.

A new circular has been issued asking schools to conduct the tests on an individual level, instead of having the state conducting them uniformly across Maharashtra. Sunil Magar, director of the Maharashtra Academic Authority, who issued the circular remained unavailable for comment.

The last year?
Talks have begun in the education sector of this year being the last run for the test. This is also because there is no compulsion on schools to feed the data in the centralised system, from where the government could refer to state wide findings.

The idea of competency tests was mooted by the government in 2015 to gauge basic understanding levels on a uniform scale of children from class I to VIII in state board schools. This move came after heavy criticism over standards of education after the Right to Education Act introduced a 'no failure till class VIII' clause.

Under these tests, each class students from across state appeared for a single paper. "But the single paper was never held on a single day in schools across the state. There was a testing window of 10-15 days during which schools had to conduct the test.

There was no way to ensure the secrecy of the paper and because of that there have been many cases of paper-leaks, which the government kept denying," shared a teacher from a Vile Parle school.

Confusion continues
But this new circular has not calmed things down just yet. "There is confusion following this circular now. If the government is asking schools to hold these tests on their own, there have to be special regulations to ensure that the tests are being conducted in all of them. Continuing to gather the data of results of the tests on the centralized platform could be one way of doing it," said Uday Nare, senior teacher at Hansraj Morarji Public School, Andheri.

Anil Bornare from Shikshak Parishad, said, "We had demanded this because conducting these tests and assessing papers was proving to be excessive for teachers, because the school is already conducting exams annually. Moreover, now even the central government is planning to introduce similar tests. Considering all of this, we had proposed cancelling the competency tests to state government."

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