How a class X student lost her trust on CBSE…
In the eventful afternoon of 28th March 2018, bells rang in thousands of schools in India to mark the end of the Class X Mathematics examination conducted by the CBSE. The paper had been a fairly easy one. We students filed out of our classrooms, feeling euphoric with the sense of freedom and relief. The exams were finished at last! Time for celebrations! Little did we know, what was about to befall on us.
After a mere couple of hours, the news flashed “CBSE to conduct re-examination”. We were absolutely appalled and, at first, in disbelief. But in an hour, it was confirmed: The Class X Mathematics paper had been leaked, and we were expected to sit for another exam.
No one can imagine our horror and anguish. Did the CBSE think that this was a joke? First, we’d had to bear the burden of giving a full-course examination, and now, our months’ of hard work was gone down the drain. We were, it seemed, nothing more than guinea pigs for the CBSE to experiment on.
Hundreds of students in many parts of the country took to the streets, demanding justice and demanding an explanation for this outrageous scandal. Upon being interviewed by the media, all that the ministers and CBSE officials said was, “We understand the pain and anguish of students and parents”, “We are going to increase the security this time”, “Our actions are going to be in favour of the students”, and so on. We did not want their condolences. These statements did nothing to console us; if anything, it angered us even more.
If they could increase the security level this time, why had not they done it the first time? Why should lakhs of students had to suffer because the CBSE was incapable of performing their duty? Why should we, through no fault of our own, have to study all over again? Why should the students go through such trauma? Even if we did sit for the re-examination, we would have none of the previous zest, because we had already given the exam and had thought that it was over.
After quite a tussle, the CBSE announced on the 31st of March that no re-examinations would be held for the students of Class X, except for the states of Delhi and Haryana (where the papers were leaked). The CBSE was, in fact, in no way prepared to tackle such a catastrophe. It could not come out with a concrete solution to this issue. Subsequently, it also exempted Delhi and Haryana from appearing for the re-examination. This certainly was a huge relief, but the distrust and suspicion towards the CBSE lingered. Students and teachers lost the faith they had in the system. Could we really trust the CBSE’s security measures? The papers had leaked once; what guarantee is there that they would not leak again? How will the CBSE ensure that the results of the examination will be fair and just? The CBSE needs to ponder these matters to ensure a better education system for the students of the country.
Nirmita Bhattacharya is a CBSE student, who appeared for her class X board examination this year and is awaiting her results.