Over 17,000 students have registered themselves for Class X board examination, which are now set to be held from May 21 to June 6.
The COVID-19 pandemic lockdown resulted into the postponement of the exam that led to uncertainty and amongst the student community, which was in a constant state of unease. However, the sudden decision of the government to hold exams this month; has created further panic.
“I was already under stress as there was no clarity on when the exams will be conducted. But the decision of the government to hold exams in May has left me worried. Not that I am not prepared for the exams, but I am not prepared mentally to get myself associated to such large gathering of students and parents during this COVID-19 pandemic,” said Sanjana Padgaonkar, a class X, student from Verem.
Another Class X student, in a letter to HERALD, said that the decision is nowhere in favour to students community. "When the CBSE exams are scheduled for July, then why are we being forced to give exams so early? COVID-19 is not eradicated yet and neither are any vaccines or treatment being finalised," the student added.
"We students are not ready to answer solely because we are scared that we might contract COVID-19 and if anything happens to a student then who will be responsible. Will it the government, the Chief Minister or us?” the student questioned.
Merlin Mariam, another student, from Panjim, added “Students are going under tremendous stress and depression due to COVID-9 situation, which has taken a toll on their health and future prospects as well. How can the government risk the lives of the students in such a pandemic by holding examinations in May? Does the government know how stressful it is? How can they expect us to concentrate on writing exam in a hall, where there are concerns about the health of every student?”
Pranav Dessai another student from Porvorim, questioned "When the government has not allowed schools to re-open and also to take a call on rescheduling the academic year; why is a different treatment being meted out to SSC and HSSC students? We agree that it is the board exam, but nothing is more important than our lives".
He added that students may come out to appear for the examination, but it most likely, that none of them would be able to concentrate and give their hundred per cent under the prevailing fear and concern.
The student community have also questioned as how they can be seated for three hours wearing a mask, when the mercury levels are soaring. "The government will be solely responsible for any infection amongst student community," said Premandi Sanvordekar, a student from Porvorim.