Published: 22nd April 2021
As COVID-19 puts a dent in extracurriculars, Kerala SSLC, +2 students might lose out on grace marks
Students appearing for national-level events like the Republic Day parade or quiz and science fairs are also awarded grace marks ranging from five to 15 per cent for national-level events
The grace marks awarded to state syllabus students for their SSLC or Plus II examinations are indeed a boon to hundreds of students as it adds to the marks obtained in their final examinations. But as the COVID pandemic has hit the extracurricular activities conducted by the state education department, there is an uncertainty in allotting grace marks.
No discussion or direction has been made to date in this regard, according to teachers and school authorities. The grace marks are being awarded to students for participating in various programmes like NSS, NCC, Bharat Scouts and Guides, Student Police Cadets (SPC), Bala Sasthra Congress, School Youth Festival, school sports and games competition, Sargolsavam and other state and national-level achievements. These marks were indeed a blessing to those students who are weak at academics, according to teachers and parents. A student who gets an A grade in an event in state kalolsavam will be awarded 30 marks while those with B grade will get 15 marks.
The same is the mark pattern for any other events conducted by the state education department but when students qualify for national sports meet and come in the first eight positions, they will get 90 grace marks and those who get qualified for the national meet and doesn't attain any position will also get 60 as grace mark. At the same time, an NSS volunteer in the higher secondary section is awarded two per cent of aggregate marks which is two per cent of 1,200, which will be 24 marks. These marks get added to the total marks of the student. On the other side, VHSE provides 80 grace marks to its NSS volunteers.
Students appearing for national-level events like the Republic Day parade or quiz and science fairs are also awarded grace marks ranging from five to 15 per cent for national-level events. Aided Higher Secondary Teachers' Association district president Sebastine John said, Grace marks have been a boon to thousands of students in our state who work day and night to get these marks. Now since the COVID condition has put an end to all extracurricular activities of students, the government must find an alternative to the allocation of grace marks.
To date, no such discussions have been made. It has to be noted that the grace mark certificates are supposed to be published in February and these marks are to be added to that of SSLC and Plus II. But now exams are almost over and to date, no discussion on grace marks has been held yet. Students will be forced to work hard to achieve these marks through academics which is an injustice to them, he said. V P Mini, Deputy Director of Education (DDE), Kozhikode, said, We have been getting calls from parents and school authorities regarding this year's grace marks as no events were conducted due to COVID. We have not received any direction from higher authorities regarding the same, she added.