CBSE and CCE : Confusing everyone

In the past one year, we have seen a lot of excitement in the school education segment in India, with the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) announcing major changes. It started with simple things like doing away with board exams at the Class X (age 16) level and has now reached a stage where everyone’s confused about things like CCE (Continuous and Comprehensive Evaluation)

The idea behind CCE was very simple – to create a system that does away with “Marks”. Most schools in India follow a 100% Mark system where students getting 92% were treated as less equal than those getting say 93%.   While some parents and teachers still claim that this system gave a clear indication of where the student ranked, the pressure to achieve maximum marks pushed few students to commit suicide and many others to be constantly harassed by parents and teachers alike.  With the forced implementation of CCE this year onwards, CBSE, in its view, hopes to reduce the burden on students.

The new CCE guidelines divide the entire evaluation process into 3 parts.

Part 1 deals with Academic Performance in Scholastic subjects like Science, Maths, English etc. where Grades are given based on year long achievements. The academic year is divided into two sessions, in each session there are Formative and Summative Assessments (FA, SA). The school has some freedom in deciding the number of FA’s and their weightage etc but the end result is that students get a Grade for each subject instead of a mark.  So far, so good. What CBSE has also done is that instead of focusing only on the 5 primary subjects, it has increased the scope by adding 3 more subjects to the Scholastic part – Work Experience, Art Education and Physical Education. For these additional subjects, teachers can give grades and a descriptive indicator explaining the student’s performance.

Part 2 deals with Co-Scholastic areas such as Life Skills, Attitude and Values. For each of these, teachers are again required to give a Grade and a descriptive indicator. Schools can expand these, for example, Life Skills can include Thinking Skills, Social Skills and Emotional Skills. Attitude can be judged towards teachers, peers, environment etc. The idea behind this part of the CCE is to let students and parents know that its not just knowledge that’s important, there has to be overall development during the school years of a student.

Part 3 of the CCE deals with Co-Scholastic Activities.  The idea behind this part is to give simple grades based on activities performed / participated in during the year.  This part is divided into two sections a) Literary / Creative / Scientific / Aesthetic Skills, Performing Arts, Clubs etc  b) Health & Physical Education. Teachers are expected to grade students on their involvement with these activities during the year.

The exhaustive evaluation of a student is why the word “Comprehensive” is used in CCE.  The only way of making this evaluation is if teachers keep records of student’s performance throughout the year, therefore the work “Continuous”.

While many schools are struggling to create formats and systems for teachers to work on, and I have had the opportunity to look at a few, I was amazed at the simplicity brought about in the whole process by the teachers and Principal of The Air Force School, Subroto Park, New Delhi – . The have created processes and formats where it would be possible for teachers to quickly evaluate and provide relevant indicators. The design of their evaluation system is simple, at the same time; it meets or exceeds all parameters defined by CBSE. Their formats eliminate chances of errors and make the whole process such that automating the CCE system would now be possible. I hope they get great recognition for their hard work and dedication, which will ease the lives of many student, parents and teachers. CBSE should now standardize these formats and ask other schools to follow.

Posted via email from Anil Sharma

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