The Higher Secondary (HS) Council, Kolkata following central boards, including CISCE and CBSE, has decided to scrap Environmental Studies (EVS) subject from its curriculum from the academic year 2013. This decision of the various boards will take off a burden from the students to appear for an additional 100-mark examination. Instead, the HS council is planning to make EVS an elective subject. Presently, the students need to score 34 marks to pass the subject.
A senior official from the HS Council informed that they are looking for options to reduce the burden on students and that they have no reason to continue this subject in the curriculum. If the students fail in EVS, the effort they put in to achieve good marks in the other elective subjects will be wasted.
Another reason that prompted the HS Council to re-consider continuing EVS as a mandatory subject is, Calcutta University does not allow HS students to include their EVS marks while calculating their aggregate for admission, only elective subjects are included. Students from other Boards are allowed to include EVS marks while calculating their aggregate, giving them an advantage over the HS students. EVS is a scoring subject and students from other Boards score a higher aggregate.
Presently, no teacher is recruited to teach EVS separately, it is taught by other subject teachers. Of the 100 marks, 60 marks is allotted for projects which is evaluated by internal examiners and the rest 40 marks is based on an one-hour external examination which is set by the Council. Some school teachers award full marks for the projects even if nothing is submitted as there is no external body to keep a check.
The Supreme Court instructed the Boards to introduce EVS subject to raise awareness amongst the students which is not possible by teaching the subject in this manner.
The proposal to scrap the subject was made by the school education department, which the HS Council will now place before the executive council for their final say.
Source: Times of India
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