Mumbai: Following demands by students and teachers, the state education board has decided to reinstate the additional 10-minute time given to students during Secondary School Certificate (SSC) and Higher Secondary School Certificate (HSC) examinations. But instead of handing question papers 10 minutes earlier than the start time, the board has decided to extend the test duration by 10 minutes.
According to a circular issued by the Maharashtra State Board of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education (MSBSHSE) on Wednesday, both the morning, as well as afternoon session papers will start at their scheduled time of 11:00 AM and 3:00 PM, respectively but end 10 minutes later than the designated end time For example, the tests ending at 2:00 PM will be continued till 2:10 PM.
The practice of handing the question papers 10 minutes in advance was introduced to allow students to plan their answers better, though they weren't allowed to write in this duration. It decided to stop the practice last week to curb paper leaks and cheating during exams. However, many students, parents and teachers objected to the eleventh-hour decision as they felt that it would put them at a disadvantage.
With the new rule in place, students will not only use the additional ten minutes to peruse question papers, but to write answers too, if they want. "We thank the board for heeding our demand and finding another way to curb paper leaks. The new decision will be even more beneficial than the previous practice as it will allow students extra time to read the question paper as well as write," said Sudhir Ghagas, President, of Maharashtra Rajya Shikshan Kranti Sena.
The class 10 SSC exams will be held betweefrom March 2 to 25, while the class 12 HSC exams are scheduled between February 21 and March 21.
(To receive our E-paper on WhatsApp daily, please click here. To receive it on Telegram, please click here. We permit sharing of the paper's PDF on WhatsApp and other social media platforms.)