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Pradeep Pattanayak

With the State government yet to take any decision on promotion of Class I to VIII students to the next level in government-run schools, and seven year age limit for admission into Class I, students and parents alike are undergoing mental stress. 

The present situation has given rise to speculations that the students may have to study the old courses once again. 

The new academic year will commence from April 1. But the Class-I to VIII students enrolled in government-run schools have not appeared in annual examinations nor do they have been promoted. As the government is yet to come up with any clarification on examinations and promotion, parents as well as students are in a dilemma. 

While the School and Mass Education department has announced about the commencement of morning classes from April 2, no clarification has been made on class promotions. 

Since students in private schools are all set to be taught in their next classes, it is feared that the students of the government-run schools will lag behind. 

“Earlier our annual examination would have been finished by this time. This year, we did not sit for the annual examination till date,” said a Class VIII student, Goutam Nag. 

Saroj Panda, President of BEd Teachers’ Association, said, “The age limit for admission into Class I has been raised to seven years. Besides this, it has been directed that the Anganwadi centres running from school campuses will merge with their respective schools. But we are in doubt regarding the commencement of academic year.”

The Principal of SAI International School, Nilakantha Panigrahi said the school is all set to begin the new academic session from April 7. 

Urging the government to announce its decision regarding promotions, President of Utkal Parents’ Association, Krushnachandra Pati said the parents are under pressure thinking about the prospect of their children’s education. “Why should they study the previous year’s courses once again,” he asked. 

The School and Mass Education department has justified the teaching of old year’s courses to students. 

“During the pandemic-hit two years, students in Class V have been promoted to Class VI and then to VII. Though they have been promoted, their academic growth has been stunted. So the department has brought out special books to teach them so that they can make up for their losses,” School and Mass Education Minister Samir Ranjan Dash had stated in the House on Wednesday. 

It has been discussed that the career of the students wouldn’t have been affected if the academic year had started at an appropriate time by introducing the special books for old courses.

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