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With HC help,Class XII boy with learning disabilities passes

Court asks State Board to give grace marks even after the last date for submitting certificate lapsed

Damley couple from Mumbai is happy for their son who was first declared “failed” in class XII exam of the Pune-based Maharashtra State Board of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education (MSBSHSE). Recently he received revised mark-sheet declaring him pass with grace marks meant for candidates with learning disability after court intervention.

Amit (name changed) failed in mathematics and statistics in which he scored 23 out of 100 marks. He had cleared other subjects successfully. When he applied for revaluation of marks in the failed subject,the teacher evaluating Amit’s performance realised that he was suffering from learning disability.

“The teacher told us that Amit needs to be sent for assessment of his learning disability. It was at that point of time we came to know of the likelihood of Amit suffering from a learning disability. We got him checked in private and then government hospital. The medical reports proved that he is suffering from three disabilities dyslexia,dysgraphia and dyscalculia,” said Amit’s mother Sonia.

When Damley’s family approached the MSBSHSE with the medical reports and requested grace marks,the State Board rejected their request on the ground that the learning disability certificate was to be submitted before stipulated date.

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“August 31,2012 was the last date for submitting disability certificate,while September 30,2012,was last date with fine. Obviously we had missed both these deadlines as we were not aware of our son’s disabilities in the past. It sounds strange,but it was a fact,” Sonia said. The Damleys then moved the Bombay High Court,making State Board as one of respondents in case. The two-member bench of Mohit Shaha and M S Sanklecha of Bombay High Court decided to grant Amit the stipulated grace marks even if his learning disability certificate was not submitted on time.

The verdict came last month. The court also passed strictures against overcrowding of classrooms by schools beyond allowed intake.

“Teachers are also expected to detect students suffering learning disabilities. We are informed that there were 103 students in each division in which ‘Amit’ was studying … such a large number of students in a classroom would never permit a teacher to give individual attention to students,much less to make efforts to find out who are the students with learning disabilities,” the verdict reads.


With the court decision in favour,Amit,who had scored first class in class X,is now pursuing international hospitality and tourism management course.”My son’s story is more melodramatic than Aamir Khan-starrer ‘Tare Zameen Par’,” said Sonia.

Activist Sandeep Khardekar,who helped Damleys in following up Amit’s case with the State Board,said education department should take due cognizance of strictures passed by the court when it comes to limiting the number of students in each division.

First published on: 04-08-2013 at 02:09 IST
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