After the record results of the pandemic-hit 2021, the Central Board of Secondary Education’s (CBSE) Class XII and X results were tempered this year by the return of external board examinations, with a fall in overall pass percentage.
For Class XII, fewer students scored more than 90 per cent and 95 per cent, though the same numbers rose for Class X.
Overall, 33,432 Class XII candidates — or 2.33 per cent of all candidates — scored 95 per cent and above this year. Last year, 70,004 — or 5.73 per cent of all candidates — scored in the same range. Similarly, 1,34,797 — or 9.39 per cent of all Class XII candidates — scored 90 per cent and above this year. This is down from 1,50,152 — or 11.51 per cent of candidates — last year.
At 92.71 per cent, the nationwide Class XII pass percentage is also significantly lower than last year’s 99.37 per cent. It is, however, higher than pre-pandemic year pass percentages: 88.78 per cent in 2020 and 83.4 per cent in 2019.
In 2021, the Board did not conduct examinations for both Class X and XII owing to the pandemic. Class XII results were calculated through a complex computation process at the school level, drawing on students’ Class X and XI final results, internal exams conducted in schools through the year, board internal assessment and practical examination scores. This was coupled with a moderation process at the school level.
This year, however, the Board chose a different approach. It bifurcated the syllabus for both years and conducted two board examinations at the end of two terms, each testing half the syllabus. The final results were tabulated by giving 30 per cent weightage to the Term 1 examinations and 70 per cent weightage to the Term 2 examination in theory marks, and equal weightage to both terms for practical marks.
The different approaches in these two years, as well as the different circumstances, are borne out in the different results.
“The Term 2 exams were the real board exams. There’s really no comparison between 2022 and 2021. Last year, we tabulated results based on internal assessment of schools. Not every teacher knows how to prepare a good question paper,” said CBSE’s Examination Controller Sanyam Bhardwaj when asked about the change in the overall performance of students in Class XII this year.
“The situation was different, the assessment pattern was different. Last year, the results were produced despite the circumstances when we were still in the learning phase of the transition from offline to online. Practices were not in place. This time it was systematic, and schools got actual offline teaching time with students from halfway through last year,” said principal of Mount Abu Public School, Delhi, Jyoti Arora.
These differences are reflected in a different way in the Class X results. For Class X too, the nationwide pass percentage has dropped — from last year’s 99.04 per cent to 94.4 per cent this year. A higher share of students, however, have scored in the highest range of 95 per cent and above. This year, 3.10 per cent (64,908) of all candidates scored 95 per cent and above. Last year 2.76 per cent (57,824) of all candidates scored in the same range. Similarly, 2,36,993 candidates, or 11.32 per cent of the candidates, scored in the 90 per cent and above range this year. This is up from 2,00,962 candidates (9.58 per cent) last year.
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In previous years, the CBSE Class XII results determined admissions to Delhi University colleges because of the cut-off system. With the adoption of the Common University Entrance Test (CUET), board results will not have an impact on admissions to DU. A majority of higher education institutes in the country, however, will continue to admit students on the basis of Class XII performance.
This year, about 6.35 lakh candidates, out of 24 lakh students, scored between 70 per cent and 90 per cent in Class 12. Under the old admission process, these six lakh candidates would not have secured a seat in a coveted college or a programme at a central university. With CUET’s introduction, they now have a shot.