Pradeep Pattanayak

With the third wave of Covid-19 forcing the State government to suspend offline classes in schools, Class X students preparing for the Board examination, and their parents, are in real quandary.   

Till some days ago, the Class X students were sanguine about their Board examination. They thought Covid-19 would spare them and they would sit for the examination without any fear and apprehension. Just then the mutant Omicron reared its ugly head. Amid the growing concern, their Summative Assessment-I was held and it ended on Friday. 

But the real problem cropped up when the government announced suspension of physical classes, forcing the students to fall back on the same online mode of education. However, the reality bites when it comes to those whose parents can’t afford a smart phone and those who live in remote areas with poor or no signal. 

“We did our best in the recently conducted test. Now we wish to sit for Summative Assessment-II. It will be good for us, if the situation allows the government to conduct the test,” said Himanshu Mahanandia, a student of Kumajharia High School in Biramitrapur. 

Pointing out the advantages of offline classes, Sherya Pattanayak, a Class XII student of CBSE pattern said that in offline classes the students have the opportunity to get their doubts cleared from their teachers face to face. 

Meanwhile, the government has permitted to organize doubt clearing classes, dividing the students in smaller groups. A few private schools have already started implementing the direction. 
“We have started taking the classes of students in smaller groups. Each class is of 30 minutes. We are giving them an assignment of 20 minutes and holding a discussion class for the rest 10 minutes. We are doing all these with strict adherence to Covid-19 guidelines,” said principal of SAI International School, Nilakantha Panigrahi. 

While the Board of Secondary Education, Odisha is all set to conduct the Summative Assessment Test-II in March, parents are also in favour of the second test, failing which like last year, there would be dissatisfaction over valuation. 

“The government should feel the necessity of conducting the final examinations of Class X and XII,” said president of Utkal Parents’ Association, Krushnachandra Pati. 
“Summative Assessment-II is regarded as the Board examination. The final result will be published while taking the results of first and second Summative Assessment tests in to consideration. In case of any eventualities, the final results will be published on the basis of the results of Summative Assessment-I,” said School and Mass Education Minister Samir Ranjan Dash.