Coronavirus: PSEB postpones pending exams; fresh orders for complete closure of all schools

Written by Divya Goyal
| Ludhiana |

Updated: March 20, 2020 8:43:07 am

PSEB has allowed the teachers to take answer sheets with them and do evaluation at their homes. Express photo by Jasbir Malhi (representational image)

The Punjab School Education Board (PSEB) Thursday ordered the postponement of pending board exams for class 5, 10 and 12, as a precautionary measure amid Covid-19 outbreak. The written exams for class 8 were already over and their pending practicals have also been postponed, said PSEB in a release. The statement added that all pending board exams, which were scheduled from March 20 to 31, stand postponed, till further orders.

Meanwhile, the director, State Council of Educational Research and Training (SCERT), Punjab, issued fresh orders Thursday ordering complete closure of all government, private, associated, aided, Adarsh and Meritorious schools, till March 31, including for teachers and other employees.

In the earlier orders for Punjab schools, the government had ordered holidays only for children till March 31 and staff including teachers were still reporting for administrative work and evaluation of answer sheets.

Read | CBSE, PSEB; list of board exams postponed due to coronavirus outbreak

However, in the fresh orders issued Thursday, the complete closure has been ordered for all schools, including for teachers and other staffers. Speaking to The Indian Express, Inderjit Singh, director, SCERT said, “Earlier we had ordered closure only for students and staff still had to report for administrative and other works. But as per today’s orders, teachers also won’t report to schools for any work. All government, private, aided and other schools have to follow these orders and they have been sent to district education officers (DEOs), school heads and block primary education officers (BPEOs) across state.”

Meanwhile, for the evaluation of answer sheets for the exams that were already conducted, the PSEB has allowed the teachers to take answer sheets with them and do evaluation at their homes.

In the written orders issued by the PSEB, teachers have been directed that due to covid-19 outbreak, they are being allowed to take answer-sheets for class 5 and 8 with them and evaluate them at their homes. With the state government also announcing the ban on public transport from Saturday, teachers reporting from villages said that it was a huge relief.

JR Mehrok, PSEB controller examinations, said to The Indian Express, “We have already issued written orders allowing teachers to take answer sheets home for class 8 and 5. Checking for these two classes was being held at cluster level and head teachers have been asked to streamline entire process now. Teachers can evaluate sheets at home and then upload marks online on the portal as earlier.”

For class 12 and 10 exams that were already conducted, Mehrok said, “For that too we are in the process of issuing orders to allow evaluation of answer sheets at home.”

On the postponement of exams, Mehrok said, “As of now, we have only postponed exams till March 31 and it will be decided as per situation, if exams scheduled for April 1 onwards will be held as per schedule or not. We will announce entire fresh schedule for pending exams on board website, newspapers, DEO-portals and other mediums in coming days.”

The class 12 exam for optional subjects under National Skill Qualification Framework (NSQF) was held as per schedule on Thursday (March 19) while no exam was scheduled for class 10 and 5 today.

Pending PSEB exams (March 20 onwards till further orders)

Class 8: Written exams scheduled from March 3 to 16 have already concluded. Practical exams which were scheduled from March 18 to March 25 (at school level) now postponed.

Class 5: Written exams were scheduled from March 14 to 23. Now, two written exams remain pending- Hindi/Urdu and Maths. Practicals for March 24 and 25 also postponed.

Class 10: Written exams were scheduled from March 17 to April 13. All remain pending except Punjabi (A)/Punjab Da Itihaas Atey Sabhyachaar (A) paper which was held on March 17.

Class 12: Written exams were scheduled from March 3 to April 3. Now those pending include physical education and sports, home science, maths, economics, music (tabla), Fundamentals of e-business, computer science, political science, physics, business studies, geography and history. (As per stream)

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