Maharashtra has been the hotspot for COVID 19 cases in India, with Mumbai holding more positive cases than any state in the country (at 20,000+ cases at the time of writing). With the on-going struggle of the government officials to curb the spread of SARS-COV-2 in containment areas, speculations have arisen that schools and colleges in the state may not open till August or September looking at the pace of the COVID cases rising.
This speculation has caused anxiety amongst parents and students alike, since it will put schools and colleges on a backfoot in the completion of their syllabus. Till this year, colleges, coaching institutes and schools used to complete their syllabus by October end, and then proceed to test students with multiple examination sets to make children more equipped in handling their boards; they had 10-12 months to complete the syllabus. However, this year the projection of schools and colleges opening in August/September has left parents scratching their heads, since it leaves students with only 8-9 months to study for their board examinations.
Schools and colleges in Maharashtra have been shut from March 17th, and many haven’t completed their 9th and 11th grade syllabus either. This means that students haven’t been able to get their base clear in crucial subjects like Maths and Accounts.
Those who’ve enrolled for private coaching classes are still better off than those who haven’t, since those from poor backgrounds are completely reliant on colleges and schools for understanding and completing the state board syllabus.
Nivan Sadh, a student of a South Mumbai college says, “There is absolutely no need to wait till June or July to announce reduction in syllabus. Coaching institutes and schools/colleges are already struggling with the charting of a schedule for completing the syllabus within such a short time. It is very obvious that Mumbai wouldn’t be in a state to re-open colleges and schools till August or September. Such delays in decision-making will only waste the time of students.”
Another student from Jai Hind College said, “it is very difficult for us to complete our syllabus in such little time. It’s very unfair that our syllabus is more than that of the previous batches yet we don’t get enough time to prepare”.
The Congress minister for School Education in Maharashtra, Varsha E. Gaikwad held a meeting with education experts on Sunday to discuss the academic issues that will be faced in this academic year, more clarity is expected on this issue for the same.