The Telegraph
Thursday , January 9 , 2014
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Willpower outwits tech wall
- Rural schools take mock test

Most schools in remote corners of East Singhbhum district battled huge hurdles such as lack of computers and electricity and yet managed to take the first mock test conducted by Jharkhand Academic Council (JAC).

The JAC, in a first-ever move of its kind, has arranged mock question papers for intermediate science students who will sit for their board exams next month to test their level of preparedness.

The first mock test in physics was hosted on Wednesday. Similar ones in chemistry, biology and maths will be held over the next three days.

However, the mock test question papers in PDF format have to be downloaded from the JAC website, printed and photocopied for distribution.

It is unimaginable in remote district schools where basic electricity is a luxury.

But teachers of these schools showed by example how willpower can beat technological hurdles.

Teacher in-charge S.S. Das of SS Plus Two High School in Patamda block, which doesn’t even have electricity connection, was one such die-hard.

Das went to the nearest cyber cafe at Patamda market, located 4km away from the school, got the physics question papers downloaded and photocopied for the 40 students of the cradle.

“We don’t have an electricity connection, let alone Internet facility. I came to know about the mock tests, which will give students an idea regarding how well they are prepared for the intermediate exams and probable questions. I did not want my students to lag behind. So, I went and managed to get the questions. We will arrange the chemistry question paper tomorrow (Thursday),” said Das.

Das is not alone. Headmaster of Plus Two High School, Bangurda, Jayant Rajak travelled 10km to a cyber café to procure question papers for 38 students of his school. He had told the person manning the cyber cafe to download the question paper as soon as it was uploaded and reached in time to collect it.

Attendance for the mock test was encouraging in urban pockets.

“Response was great. About 95 per cent students appeared for the three-hour-long physics exam. We began sharp at 9.45am. We are happy the council is finally taking concrete steps to improve results,” said Mohammad Riyaz, controller of examinations at Karim City College.

The exam was delayed by nearly 45 minutes at Jamshedpur Co-operative College because downloading the question paper and taking its photocopies consumed some time.

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