Wednesday, June 15, 2005

More victims

Following up on the previous post: there is a second group of students who are affected in a cruel way by another move by the Tamil Nadu government: scrapping the concept of 'improvement exams'.

In previous years, many students, who were not satisfied with the seats (college-branch combination) they got in their admissions cycle, decided to wait for a year, take the higher secondary exam and the entrance exam again a year later, and get back into the admissions process. No figures are available for the number of such students; but my guess is that it would run into several thousands. Clearly, it is a risk these students were taking; but it is also a calculated risk -- based on the students' faith in their own ability to get better marks the next time around.

One can quibble with the fairness of it all; I am also sure that sensible arguments can be made both for, and against, this system.

But what cannot be denied is that the system, as it existed before June 7 of this year (and barely a month before the counselling sessions were to start) allowed the students to take the improvement exam, and many made use of it. Now, these students end up on the losing side twice over, because of a thoughtless -- and ultimately, cruel -- move by their own government: their improvement exam results don't count, and they have lost a year.

The right thing for the government to do is to allow these students into the admissions process this year, and scrap the improvement exams from next year.


  1. Anonymous said...

    If you look at the reasons for making such a hasty decision by Jayalalitha's Government, her hands were forced by the opposition parties.

    PMK's Ramadoss had called for an agitation against the Entrance Exams, arguing that they were against the interests of the rural students who study in Tamil medium. Since elections to Tamil Nadu assembly is coming up in 2006, Jayalalitha couldn't afford much space to the opposition parties.

    So couple of days before the agitation was to take place, she scrapped the CET.

    That a judicial review of the decision will be taken is probably something her Government knows. That every political party (without any kind of debate whatsoever) in Tamil Nadu supports scrapping the entrace exams is also clear.

    It is now all about who did it. You can't wait for an year, can you? By which time the elections will be over and who knows who will be in power by then?

    My feeling is that the courts will demand that the previous system be in place for this year admission and the new rule be imposed from the next year. Jayalalitha can claim that she had the best of intentions in scrapping the exams but the courts denied her. PMK and DMK will claim they asked for the scrapping the exam first and Jayalalitha had to but accept the demands.

    And so we keep bickering...

  2. Anonymous said...

    Sorry, didn't notice your previous post.