Published: 29th March 2021
Owing to increase in COVID-19 cases, many CBSE schools in TN start off on practical classes
Some schools, which have already completed their practical exams in the past week, said that sensitising students and their families was the most important part of the process
The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) has said that practical exams can be conducted any time between March 1 and June 11. However, owing to fear from the increasing COVID-19 cases in Tamil Nadu, CBSE schools are starting their practical exams on Monday. Many fear that since practical examination requires mandatory contact with surfaces, students are at higher risk of spreading the virus. Teachers say that schools should strictly implement the Standard Operating Procedures issued by CBSE in order to prevent cluster outbreaks.
Some schools, which have already completed their practical exams in the past week, said that sensitising students and their families was the most important part of the process. “Once students come to school, we can enforce all the rules in the SOP. But it is important to make sure that they are not mingling in crowds outside school hours,” said P Vijayalakshmi, the principal of Chinmaya Vidyalaya, Virugambakkam.
She added that as the number of COVID-19 cases are increasing, schools should inform students to not appear for the exam even if a family member is sick.
“CBSE has given the option to conduct the exams till June. So students should be asked to not attend the exam, even if they are doubtful that their family members are COVID-positive,” she said. M Manickasamy, the principal of Kendriya Vidyalaya, IIT said that there should be no dilution of the SOP issued by the CBSE. “No more than 13-14 students should be allowed in a batch. And at no point should students or teachers be allowed to take off their masks,” he said.
He added that parents too have been advised not to go out a lot. KR Nandhakumar, the leader of the Tamil Nadu Matriculation, Higher Secondary and CBSE Schools Association said that many schools have opted to complete the practical exams before the first week of April. “Students can then focus on the theory exams. Schools are conducting even public exam revision classes also online mostly,” he said.
The principal of a CBSE school in T Nagar said that her school will be starting practicals on Monday.
“We have split the exam into three batches. Earlier, we allowed only two batches. But all schools should make use of this and keep the number of students in each batch as low as possible,” she said.
The SOP for the conduct of practical exams can be found on https://www.cbse.gov.in/cbsenew.