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ICSE council to set IX and XI questions

Decision is primarily aimed at ensuring that the schools teach only the syllabus prescribed for a particular class

By Mita Mukherjee and Jhinuk Mazumdar in Calcutta
  • Published 23.07.19, 2:15 AM
  • Updated 23.07.19, 2:15 AM
  • 2 mins read
  •  
Students appear for ICSE exam in Jamshedpur last year. The Telegraph file picture

Students in classes IX and XI in ICSE/ISC schools will be tested on common question papers, like in board tests, in core subjects in their annual examinations from next year.

The schools will evaluate the answer scripts and prepare the results.

The students who are now in classes IX and XI will be the first batch to be tested under the new system. Their annual exams are scheduled for February-March next year.

The students in the Darjeeling hills will write their annual exams in November.

The Delhi-based Council for Indian School Certificate Examinations, which conducts the ICSE and ISC exams, had earlier planned to introduce the new system in 2018-19. The implementation was deferred by a year to enable the schools to prepare for the new system.

“The schools have been instructed to be ready to hold the annual exams for classes IX and XI using the common question papers to be set by the council from the current session,” Gerry Arathoon, the chief executive and secretary of the council, told Metro.

He announced the decision at a gathering of heads and owners of ICSE schools in Vizag, Andhra Pradesh, on Saturday.

The core subjects in Class IX are English language and literature, history and civics, geography, math, physics, chemistry, biology, economics and commercial studies.

For Class XI, the subjects are English language and literature, physics, chemistry, biology, math, history, geography, sociology, political science, psychology, commerce, accounts, economics, business studies and computer science.

This newspaper had reported on the council’s plan to set questions for classes IX and XI. The decision is primarily aimed at ensuring that the schools teach only the syllabus prescribed for a particular class.

The council had received complaints that many schools taught portions of the Class IX syllabus in Class VIII and topics from the Class X syllabus in Class IX.

Similarly, Class XI students at many schools are taught topics from Class XII.

Council rules state the schools must cover all topics prescribed in each subject for every class and give weightage to all chapters and units.

But many schools allegedly skip certain topics in classes VIII, IX and XI so they could start teaching topics from the subsequent classes in advance.

“The council has taken the decision to test students of classes IX and XI on common question papers to stop the practice,” the principal of an ICSE school in Calcutta said.

Many schools welcomed the move. “If the question papers are set by the council, there will be parity.... At times, we have seen that some schools are lenient in their approach in classes IX and XI...,” said Raja McGee, the principal of Calcutta Boys’ School.