While we all are ensuring to stay home and stay safe, the longer-term future beyond the pandemic looks uncertain.
One of the most worrying aspects of the pandemic is the unsettling effect on all sections of people. For students, this time is full of uncertainty and doubts. Whether it’s school students who just passed their 12th exams and are waiting for admission in colleges or those who are in final year in college.
With no clarity yet from most institutes on how they are planning to proceed, students’ anxiety and mental stress overcome the Covid worries. With #StudentsLivesMatter trending on Twitter these days, students are against the UGC guidelines of conducting exams.
In this bizarre and difficult time, perhaps the government could show a little more consideration for the health of students and all support staff, and postpone the exams. 🙏🏽#INDIAunitedtoPostponeJEE_NEET #ProtestAgainstExamInCOVID
— VISHAL DADLANI (@VishalDadlani) August 22, 2020
While most students are of views of not conducting exams in time of the pandemic, UGC, on the other hand, is rigid on its guidelines that degrees cannot be provided without examination.
After SC dismisses plea to postpone NEET and JEE main exams, several parents said that they were not in favour of exams at this time, as the no. of cases is rising rapidly and going outside is very unsafe so how is it a good idea to go ahead with the exams?, asked Jitender Gaur whose son is appearing for JEE exam.
Recently, we have seen that entrance examination for Bachelor of Education (B.Ed) is being conducted in various districts of Uttar Pradesh. While the government is ensuring that exams are scheduled and are conducted keeping in mind Covid-19 protocol and social distancing measures but it is observed that students and their guardians ignored the safety norms, some of them were even seen without masks resulting in a rise in cases in different districts of UP.
Kanpur: People appearing for the UP B.Ed JEE 2020 exam being screened and sanitized at the entrance of an examination center.
The examinees are allowed to travel with their admit cards, during the weekend lockdown. pic.twitter.com/6SKE2fRX43
— ANI UP (@ANINewsUP) August 9, 2020
Nidhi Chaudhry, Assistant Professor Maims said safety should be the first concern. Coming out with an option of conducting online exam will be good only to keep in mind that those who do not have access to the internet, smartphones, laptop or PC how will they give the exam? Exam postponement is a good option. It shouldn’t hamper a student’s result as the entire world is going through the same problem so all institutions and employers are going to consider it and won’t affect student’s result sheet.
While Deepankar, a software engineer shares a different point of view, he feels that cancellation of exams will not be in the interest of the students. As there are dropout students also who are preparing for JEE and NEET, for more than1-2 years so as to get admission in the prestigious college. Postponing the exams could lead to a year wasted for them.
As citizens are now more aware of the Covid-19 protocols and instructions regarding physical distancing, use of mask and keeping a sanitiser bottle have been shared with students, exams should be conducted, he added.
Is Indian education system is all about exams and marks and if the student is not taught properly during lockdown how can we expect them to give examination, says Rohen Murrari, final year student at IP university.
While the Covid time looks very uncertain and fear in the mind of students is justified but scrapping examinations is never a viable option. In times of pandemic, students are very anxious not only about exams but their major concern is safety from virus, and going out in public can also infect their parents and senior citizens at home.
The need of the hour is to think of an alternative way of conducting the exam and understand the concern of student’s safety and future. Assure them that their safety cannot be hampered so as to make them feel safe while giving exams.