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Seba plea to exempt teachers from duty

- Assam poll dates clash with examinations

Guwahati, March 6: The Board of Secondary Education, Assam (Seba), has moved the Chief Election Commissioner with a request not to engage high school teachers for poll duties, as it may cause inordinate delay in the declaration of matric or Class X final examinations results.

Seba secretary Abir Hazarika told The Telegraph today that the board has asked the state education department to forward its request to the Election Commission through Assam’s chief electoral officer Vijayendra.

He said the election dates for Assam — April 7, 12 and 24 — have been scheduled at a time of the year when evaluation should be in full swing to declare results in time.

“If the Election Commission engages high school teachers for poll duties in Assam, the evaluation process will go for a toss. We do not want any delay in the declaration of matric results and have decided to approach the Election Commission via the Assam government to exempt high school teachers from poll duties,” Hazarika said.

The Seba will require 16,000 teachers as evaluators for smooth evaluation and declaration of matric results in time.

More than three lakh students have appeared for the matric and Assam High Madarsa examinations, which concluded today.

Seba will start the evaluation process from tomorrow.

It takes at least one-and-a-half months to complete the evaluation of answer scripts alone.

According to the board, it should be able to complete the process by April 22 if high school teachers are not engaged in poll duties.

After evaluation of answer scripts, the board will start tabulation of marks, inclusion of marks in marksheets and printing of result books.

Normally Seba declares the matric results in the middle of May. It declared the results on May 17 last year.

An official in Seba’s examination branch said if the board was forced to put the evaluation process on hold from April 7 to 24 because of a shortage of teachers, it would have to conduct the same exercise after April 24 in a haphazard manner to declare the results in May.

“Fast evaluation has maximum risks of committing errors. Seba was at the receiving end last year after declaration of results as the All-Assam Students’ Union led an indefinite strike against alleged anomalies in the evaluation of answer scripts. We do not want repeat of the same episode this year and thus do not want to take any risks,” the official said.

Assam chief electoral officer Vijayendra said though he has not received any such request from the education department as yet, Seba’s request would be given due consideration keeping in mind students’ interest.

An official in the department of secondary education said Seba’s request would be forwarded to the chief electoral officer tomorrow.


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