Millennium Post (Kolkata)
The decision to put off the CBSE class 12 examinations and cancel the class 10 examinations at the end of a disrupted academic year brings much-needed relief to anxious students caught on the crest of the second COVID-19 wave. Unlike last year’s first phase of the pandemic, the ongoing wild spread covers young people as well. The age cohort of those infected now includes even 15-year-olds. It is a wise move on the Centre’s part to keep this risk group out of harm’s way, reducing the possibility of school-based clusters and onward spread to older age groups who have shielded themselves so far. The onus is now on state governments, some of which have already initiated the examination schedule, to recognise the crisis and display flexibility in reconsidering dates. Kerala had, for instance, postponed its SSLC and higher secondary level examinations due to the state elections, but these got underway immediately thereafter. Tamil Nadu has also scheduled school public examinations through May. What state governments should be focusing on is enhancement of the efficiency of vaccination rollout, using available vaccines and new ones in the pipeline. This effort will be greatly helped if there is undivided attention devoted to covering all age groups at the earliest, using the enhanced supply.
— KHOKAN DAS, KOLKATA