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Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Thursday said that the state board examinations for classes 10 and 12 will be held from July 15, if the COVID-19 positivity rate goes below two per cent.
A series of meetings were held by the education department with guardians, students' organisations and other stakeholders and they are in favour of holding the examinations, Sarma said at a press conference held to mark the completion of the first 30 days of his government.
Several states have cancelled their board examinations amid the Covid-19 pandemic after the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) decided not to hold its class 12 exam.
"The schedule for the examinations will be announced within the next few days but with the rider that the positivity rate in the state comes down to less than two per cent," he said.
The current positivity rate in the state is 3.24 per cent. The examinations will be held for one or two days with strict compliance of Covid protocols and the question papers will be of objective type, he said. "The matric (class 10) and the higher secondary examinations are important as several empowering schemes like handing laptops and scooties are linked to these examinations," he said.
However, if the positivity rate is above two per cent on July 1, the board examinations will be cancelled, as we cannot take risk with the lives of students", Sarma said. If the examinations are cancelled, schools will be directed to conduct the evaluation for which the modalities will be worked out and Education Minister Ranoj Pegu will announce it accordingly, he said.
The High School Leaving Certificate examination for Class 10, held by the Board of Secondary Education, Assam, and the Class 12 final examination conducted by the Assam Higher Secondary Education Council, were scheduled to start in May. The exams were postponed due to the outbreak of the second wave of COVID-19.