Shri Pokhriyal’s virtual interaction with teachers, parents, and students on various upcoming competitive and board exams today was a success.
During the one-hour interaction, the Minister responded to the various concerns and queries of the students relating to school examinations, entrance examinations, among others.
Speaking on the occasion Shri Pokhriyal said that the students are the brand ambassadors of the National Education Policy 2020. Emphasizing that all of us have to take collective efforts to make the policy a grand success, he sought the cooperation of students and teachers in the effective implementation of the policy. While hoping that students will soon return to their normal school days, the Minister urged them to continue their studies along with adhering to all the precautions and guidelines on COVID.
Recalling the active participation of students in the “My Book, My friend Campaign”, Minister asked students to continue the habit of reading. He also asked students to give Book as a birthday present to friends, relatives, and others. Following this will develop and build the culture of teaching and learning, he added.
He noted with happiness that even during the lockdown, the process of learning and teaching continued. On various initiatives started by the Ministry of Education to provide education during Covid, he spoke about PM e-Vidya which via Digital/ Online/ Radio medium, is benefitting crores of students; Diksha, Swayam Prabha, IIT PAL. These programmes have strengthened the accessibility and availability of education. He also mentioned that the Ministry has issued regular directions and SoPs for enabling education to all students during Covid, such as the Pragyata Guidelines, Academic calendar, etc.
He also mentioned that Competitive exams such as NEET and JEE were held successfully and the safety of each and every student undertaking the exam was also ensured.
He also expressed happiness that a toll-free tele-counseling facility for the students was started by the Ministry, providing counseling services to students in India and several countries abroad.
The Minister stated that the Ministry will examine the suggestion positively to give the option to candidates to appear one/ two/ three/ four times in JEE (Main) 2021 for admission in the coming academic year.
In a question relating to the syllabus and dates of NEET, the Minister clarified that the schedule for NEET (UG) 2021 is being finalized in consultation with the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and the National Medical Commission (NMC). The same would be declared in near future, he said. Regarding the syllabus for NEET (UG) 2021, Shri Pokhriyal said that the syllabus will remain the same as the previous year.
Informing about the Board Examinations of class 10thand class 12th, the Minister said that the consultations with the stakeholders are in progress for deciding the dates of Board examinations and it will be announced soon based on the feedback from stakeholders.
On a query relating to cancellation or postponement of CBSE practical examinations, the Minister said that CBSE is yet to take a decision on the dates of conducting Board examinations including practical. Consultations with the stakeholders are in progress. In case students are not able to do practical in classes before the examinations alternatives to practical examinations will be explored, he added.
During the interaction on the safety with students Reopening of Schools for the students appearing for boards, Shri Pokhriyal said that the Department of School Education and Literacy, Ministry of Education has already issued SOP/Guidelines for reopening of schools which deals with health and safety aspects for reopening schools and learning with physical/social distancing and the academic aspects related to the delivery of education. Ministries are constantly in contact with states, he added.
While concluding, the Minister expressed his happiness to interact with the students. He appealed to the students not to panic. He said the Ministry is committed to ensuring the safety and academic welfare of the students. He also informed that the latest information regarding examinations, syllabus, etc, will be available on the website of the Ministry and its autonomous institutions from time to time.