The crucial Class 10 and 12 board examinations of the Maharashtra State Board of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education for the academic year 2020-21 are likely to be delayed till May 2021, state Education Minister Dr Varsha Gaikwad said here on Friday.
Usually, the MSBSHSE conducts these exams during February-March, but next year, these may be delayed by a couple of months for the current academic year in view of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“The Class 10 and Class 12 Board exams will not be held before May 2021,” Gaikwad said after the matter figured in the weekly cabinet meeting.
“The current Covid-19 situation is likely to last for a longer period. We have also discussed the issue of completion of syllabus and conducting the exams, but the Board will be unable to hold these exams before next May,” she added.
Gaikwad’s statements assume significant as there are apprehensions of a second wave even as the Covid-19 cases and fatalities in the state have plummeted during October and remain in the lower ranges in November.
The Minister said that around 25 percent of the curriculum may have to be omitted to enable teachers and students complete the remaining syllabus on time.
In the 2019-2020 academic year, while the HSC examinations were completed, a few papers in the the SSC exams went for a toss as the state and national lockdowns started from March 24-March 25 respectively.
Simultaneously, Gaikwad indicated that post-Diwali, from Nov. 23, the Maharashtra Government is contemplating reopening schools for the higher classes from Class 9 to 12 with strict SOPs and health norms.
“We will start with the older students in the first phase. For the students in the lower classes from lasses 1 to 8, the online classes will continue as usual for the present,” she added.
In some relief, students and teachers currently part of the online education since the pandemic and subsequent lockdown, will get a short Diwali vacation.