From interviews to aptitude tests, schools are innovating newer ways to decide on which stream a student should opt for after class 10. Usually, most schools and students narrow down on subjects they opt for in class 11 or junior college based on class 10 marks, this year since the exams have been scrapped, schools have opted for newer ways.
South Point School, Kolkata has already completed the admission process online through tests and interviews. Principal Krishna Damani says that students were asked to sit for an admission test before joining class 11.
While students have the flexibility to choose a combination of subjects even between streams, their choices need to be informed. “Students need to identify their aptitude, their strengths, and weaknesses before selecting subjects”, says Poonam Kochitty, Principal, Seth Anandram Jaipuria School, Shaheed Path, Lucknow.
“Marks scored in board exams are a good indicator to help students make the choice. But because of a different criterion of assessment this year as a result of the exam cancellation, the choice of streams must be based on interest, aptitude, and abilities,” says Kochitty.
Some teachers, however, are considering it to be a positive step. “Final exam are not the only determining factor to choose subjects for the next grade, it is one of the data points used by students to know where they stand in a subject in order to make an appropriate subject choice,” stresses Shalini John (Head- IBDP), Aditya Birla World Academy. “But internal assessments and aptitude tests are also other data points that continuously help in the evaluation process,” she adds.
Students are relying heavily on their teachers to make the choice. Anushka Sharma, a class 10 student at Seth Anandram Jaipuria School, Vasundhara, Ghaziabad says she and many of her friends are relying on their teachers to help them decide. “Besides, our teachers have known us for years and they know our strengths and weaknesses well enough to guide us in making the right selection,” said the teenager.
Many students are also taking support of online counseling. Swati Salunkhe, Career Counsellor at Mumbai-based Growth Centre says the Indian education system relies heavily on marks. Since exams are not being held, she has seen a rise in students seeking counseling.
“April to June has always been a peak time for career counsellors, however, this year since there was so much uncertainty about the class 10 board exams, students have been opting for guidance as an alternative to exam marks to explore what are the career options they have,” said Salunkhe.