WITH AN overall pass percentage of 71.90 per cent, the Gujarat Secondary and Higher Secondary Education Board (GSHSEB) Class XII results of Science stream declared Thursday recorded the lowest success rate in the past seven years.
The pass percentage dropped by one percent from 72.99 per cent recorded in the year 2017-18.
Also, the results reveal that among all the subjects, the highest number of students in the Science stream have failed because of three Science subjects – Physics, Chemistry and Biology – in which was recorded the lowest pass percentage of 76.20 per cent, 72.68 per cent and 74.60 per cent, respectively.
Poor pass rate linked to change in marking period
The semester system that was introduced from 2011 and continued for the next five years to destress students from the burden of board exams is now blamed as the culprit for making students take note of only what is taught in six months and not the entire two years. Experts say that the decline in the pass percentage can be correlated with the bringing back of the old annual system of evaluation since the 2016-17 academic year.
This year again, the highest number of 33,556 students failed in the subject of Chemistry. Therefore, it has been awarded the highest number of grace marks as well, although GSHSEB officials claim it was as per the norms to give grace marks.
The only subjects in which the students secured 100 per cent results are the languages, including Gujarati both as the first language (for Gujarati medium students) and second language (for non-Gujarati medium students), Urdu, Arabic and Marathi.
With the highest number of students failing in Chemistry, the GSHSEB is said to have received a number of complaints from parents alleging that the question paper was “tough” and to get it “verified”.
“We received some requests from parents seeking to reconsider the Chemistry marks. But we have accessed and verified the Chemistry question paper and it is okay,” said GSHSEB Chairman A J Shah. “There is nothing that can be said as tough or out of syllabus. We have to evaluate students’ understanding of the subject and not how much he is able to (learn by) rote.”
There have been instances where students have been complaining of private schools failing to provide practical lessons on the subject to students, due to the absence of laboratories and qualified teachers.
As for the general marks scored, in a repeat of the trend, this year too girls scored higher than boys, though by a very thin margin of 0.18 per cent. Among girls, 72.01 per cent passed, while among boys, percentage of those who passed was 71.83 per cent.
As many as 1,23,860 total students took the exams at a total of 139 centres and sub centres. Out of this, 89,060 students qualified for the pass certificates.
As for the problem of cheating in exams, there has been an increase of more than three times compared to the previous year where 120 cases were found. This time, a total of 365 copying cases were registered, and the results of the students involved have been withheld.
The drop in pass percentage this year also reflected a decline in the number of schools that recorded a 100 per cent result. In fact, there has been a considerable increase in the number of schools that secured a pass percentage of only below 10 per cent.
From 42 schools that recorded a 100 per cent result in the previous year, the number has declined to 35. Also, the number of schools with less than 10 per cent result increased from 26 schools in the year 2017-18 to 49 this year.
Among the five different mediums of instruction, students of English medium continued to fare better than their counterparts in Gujarati, Hindi, Marathi and Urdu medium. The pass percentage of English medium students was the highest with 75.13 per cent, while for the Marathi medium it was the lowest at 58.57 per cent. Urdu medium students recorded 71.43, Gujarati 71.09 and Hindi medium 65.13 per cent. The number of students who secured the top grade of A1 registered a slight increase from 136 in 2017-18 to 183 this year, though the number of students in A2 grade witnessed a decline from 2,838 to 2,516 this year.
Among districts, Chhota Udepur continued to be the district with the lowest pass percentage. Further declining from 35.64 pass per cent recorded in 2017-18, Chhota Udepur created a new lowest record with only 29.81 per cent of students passing the board exams, putting the district again at the bottom among all 33 districts in the state.
This year again, Rajkot maintained the top position, though with a slightly lower percentage from 85.03 per cent last year to 84.47 per cent this year.
Among the “medical” and “non-medical” streams, the non-medical students scored better with 78.92 per cent as compared to 67.26 pass per cent of “medical” students. Also, students who opted for both “medical” and “non-medical” subjects secured a pass percentage of 64.29 per cent.
The results of the Gujarat Common Entrance Test (GUJCET), the state-level entrance test administered by the Gujarat Secondary and Higher Secondary Education Board for admission to degree engineering courses as well as degree and diploma pharmacy courses in government, grant-in-aid and self financed institutes of Gujarat were also declared Thursday.
A total of 1,31,684 students have appeared for B (medical), A (non medical) and AB (both) groups GUJCET examination conducted on April 26.