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April 25, 2018

‘Docking marks for skill-based courses unfair’


New Delhi : The effort of schools to broadbase vocational skills aligned with the vision of the youth and the country often hits a roadblock once the students reach the university level. In fact, during the admission process itself, the lack of synergy between the education boards and universities leads to the scores obtained by students in many elective subjects being marked down. Schools feel that students pursuing courses such as legal studies, media studies, information technology, hospitality and financial management should not be penalized for their choice of subjects while seeking admission to undergraduate courses.

Chairperson of National Progressive Schools’ Conference, Ashok Pandey, said, “It is heartening that school boards have understood the need to broadbase certain skill areas and have taken action in terms of designing curriculum, assessment and implementation in the schools. What is disheartening is that higher educational institutions and universities are not appreciating this.”

Pandey added that there was an urgent need for the institutions of higher education to immediately revisit their courses and eligibility criteria. “The human resource ministry or state education departments or perhaps the Central Advisory Board of Education must work on a policy to forward integrate the new subjects introduced by school boards so students do not suffer,” Pandey suggested.

Punishing students by docking marks at the time of admission would render the very act of introducing courses such as financial or hospitality management, IT, graphics design or even legal studies and media studies, among others, counterproductive, say teachers.

Ameeta Mulla Wattal, principal of Springdales School at Pusa Road and Kirti Nagar, said that some effort was being made by the government to build bridges between schools and institutions of higher education. “Unless we do this and the universities endorse them, no course will be effective,” she said, adding that the CBSE chairman had assured school principals of an emphasis on the acceptability of school-level vocational/ elective course by universities. However, she added, this had to be confirmed in the form of a policy to remove all apprehensions that students may have about taking up such subjects.

School administrators also feel that in order to make education truly inclusive, universities should accept more students from the vocation stream.

Note: News shared for public awareness with reference from the information provided at online news portals.

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