Revolutionizing Education Assessment: Biannual Board Examinations

Students taking biannual board examinations, revolutionizing education assessment
Revolutionizing Education Assessment: Biannual Board Examinations

Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, on February 20th, 2024, introduced a groundbreaking reform in Indian education. Henceforth, students will have the option to sit for secondary and higher secondary board examinations twice annually, commencing from the academic year 2025-26. This progressive move, aligned with the objectives of the National Education Policy 2020, aims to alleviate exam stress and foster a conducive learning environment.

Rationale Behind the Move:

The decision stems from the National Education Policy 2020's focus on enhancing learning flexibility. By allowing students the opportunity to take board exams twice a year, the reform seeks to mitigate the pressure associated with high-stakes annual exams. This shift promises a transformative evolution in India's assessment ecosystem, prioritizing both academic excellence and mental well-being.

Envisioned Framework:

As per the New Curriculum Framework (NCF) unveiled by the Ministry of Education, board examinations will be conducted at least biannually, affording students ample time and opportunities to demonstrate their abilities. Moreover, students will have the liberty to retain their best scores from either attempt, thereby offering multiple chances to achieve their desired academic outcomes.

Addressing Student Anxiety:

The Education Minister emphasized the urgent need to alleviate excessive exam pressure, allowing students the freedom to engage in holistic development activities such as arts and sports. The biannual examination model is poised to address this concern by providing students with a more balanced and less stressful assessment environment.

Phased Introduction:

The twin board exams initiative applies to both public and private schools affiliated with central and state educational boards. Over the next two years, modalities and subject coverage for the two test cycles will be meticulously formulated for nationwide implementation, beginning from the 2025 academic calendar.

Continued Assessments Significance:

While acknowledging the significance of continuous internal assessments in evaluating practical application capabilities, experts underscore the added value of external exams. Biannual board examinations offer students opportunities to overcome occasional underperformance episodes during crucial board exams.

CBSE Board Exam Statistics:

In the 2023 CBSE board exams, approximately 38.2 lakh students participated in the class 10 and class 12 board exams. The Education Ministry officials have announced that the first of the 2025 board exams will be held in November-December 2024, followed by the second exam in February-March 2025.

PM SHRI Scheme:

Additionally, Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan launched the PM SHRI (Prime Minister Schools for Rising India) Scheme in Chhattisgarh, aiming to upgrade 211 schools in the state. The scheme also introduces the concept of 10 bag-less days in schools annually, emphasizing the importance of engaging students in cultural, artistic, and sporting activities.

By implementing biannual board examinations, India is poised to revolutionize its education assessment system, prioritizing student well-being and academic excellence.

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