SC agrees to hear petition challenging board exams for class 5 & 8 students in K’taka

11:30 AM Mar 21, 2023 | Team Udayavani |

The Supreme Court of India has agreed to hear a petition challenging the holding of board exams for students of Standards 5 and 8 in schools affiliated with the Karnataka state board. The matter was listed to be heard on March 27.


The petition has been moved by the associations of unaided private schools against the order passed by a division bench of the Karnataka High Court on March 15. Karnataka High Court’s March 15 order had allowed the holding of the board exams by staying an order of the single bench of the HC which had quashed the State Government circulars prescribing the board exams for Class 5 and Class 8.

The petitioners have argued that changing the assessment method by conducting State-level ‘board exams’ instead of school-level assessments will adversely impact the students and the teachers. Further, they have contended that no discussions with the stakeholders, parents, children, or schools had been undertaken before issuing the circulars.

However, the state government has argued that there is no Board examination. There is only a minor change in the process of assessing children and 80 percent of the total 100 marks being given to students is based on the continuous internal assessment made by the respective schools from the beginning of the academic year. It is only for the remaining 20 percent marks for the final assessment process that question papers are prepared at the state level and evaluation of the paper is done at taluk and block levels.

On March 10, a single-judge bench of Justice Pradeep Singh Yerur quashed the government circulars on the ground that they were issued in violation of the procedure under the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009. The bench, however, granted liberty to the State to implement the decision from the next academic year after following due procedure.


The single-bench decision was stayed by a division bench on March 15, with a caveat that the results will be subject to the outcome of the matter. Further, the division bench of Justice G Narendar and Justice Ashok S Kinagi directed that state government shall ensure that no questions are framed from subjects that are outside the prescribed syllabus and the results shall be communicated to school and not put out in public and would be subject to the final decision in the appeal.


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