COVID-19 in Mumbai: Might have to conduct entrance tests for FYJC admissions, say Junior Colleges
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Following the cancellation of Class 10 board examinations by both the state and private boards due to the surge in COVID-19 cases, junior colleges have raised concerns about Class 11 First Year Junior College (FYJC) admissions. Junior colleges said they might have to introduce an entrance examination in order to test the academic understanding and knowledge of students before admitting them to FYJC.

Junior colleges said they are clueless on how admissions to FYJC will be conducted without any specific clarity on the methods to mark Class 10 students without examinations. Zarine Bhathena, principal of Bhavan's College, Andheri West said, "We have no clarity on how to admit students to FYJC if they have not appeared for Class 10 board examinations." Bhathena added, "How are Class 10 students going to be marked and provided with results without examinations? How do marks, given on the basis of previous internal assessments or school level examinations, completely indicate the academic understanding of a student? We might have to conduct entrance tests at junior college level in order to admit students to FYJC."

While Marie Fernandes, principal of St Andrew's College, Bandra (West) said, "FYJC admissions conducted through a centralised process by the state School Education Department are purely based on merit. On what basis are we supposed to admit students to FYJC if they have not appeared for Class 10 board examinations? We will have to wait for guidelines from the respective boards, because Class 10 board examinations play a crucial role in determining the course of higher education for a student."

The state School Education Department is working on devising a marking method to provide results of Class 10 students. On Wednesday, Varsha Gaikwad, state school education minister said, "In a meeting with senior department officials and the state board examination advisory committee following the cancellation of Class 10 examinations, various insightful suggestions and options for admissions to FYJC were discussed. This is the first in a series of consultations we plan to hold with various stakeholders for evolving a fair and objective criterion in this regard."

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