UAE pupils face exam delays as Indian boards postpone testing by three months

CBSE tests were set to start in February but will begin in early May instead

DUBAI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES , Feb 26  – 2020 :- Students of 10th class during the session to reduce the stress and anxiety before their English board exam at the Indian High School in Oud Metha in Dubai. The Indian High School is a CBSE affiliated Indian school in Dubai. (Pawan Singh / The National) For News/Online/Instagram.  Story by Patrick
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Thousands of pupils in the UAE will have their exams delayed this term after Indian authorities pushed test dates back by several months.

On New Year’s Eve, India’s Union Education Minister, Ramesh Nishank, said the Central Board of Secondary Education Examinations would postpone board exams for grades 10 and 12 from May 4 to June 10.

Results will be declared by July 15 while practical tests will begin on March 1.

Exams were originally scheduled to start in February with results expected by the end of May.

Exams were postponed to give pupils more time to prepare and because of the growing number of Covid-19 cases in India, which surpassed 10 million.

The majority of Indian schools in the Emirates follow the CBSE curriculum, with thousands of pupils appearing for CBSE examinations each year.

About 80,000 pupils in Dubai attend Indian schools.

Dubai, United Arab Emirates - February 14, 2019: Rashmi Nandkeolyar, principal at Delhi Private School. Rahhal programme is in its second phase and heads of schools are discussing the challenges it faces. Thursday the 14th of February 2019 at The Gardens, Jebel Ali, Dubai. Chris Whiteoak / The National

Rashmi Nandkeolyar, principal of Delhi Private School Dubai, said the postponement was a considerate move that would benefit pupils by giving them more time to prepare.

The school was waiting for official confirmation when contacted by The National on Saturday.

“This would be suitable to all concerned, and CBSE would fast-rack results,” Ms Nandkeolyar said.

“There are a lot of Covid-19 cases in India. This decision has taken into consideration everyone who has been affected.”

She said many universities would consider predicted grades instead so pupils can still apply for placements as usual.

“Everything will be slowed down from schools to the university level,” she said.

The postponement would give pupils more time to study so they would feel more relaxed during their exams – and hopefully earn better results, Ms Nandkeolyar said.

Unni Jose, senior school supervisor at Ambassador School in Dubai, said he expected The Indian School Certificate Examination, another major Indian curriculum, to announce revised exam dates soon too.

“There is no confirmation yet. Since CBSE has announced dates, ICSE will also be looking to hold exams on similar dates,” he said.

Teachers in India had appealed to authorities to give pupils time to catch up since many have been studying remotely for months.

Parents in India had also requested authorities push exams back so children could have face-to-face time with teachers.

Previously, the CBSE reduced its syllabus by about 30 per cent to help pupils finish coursework in time.