Where is the sanctity of Exams?
Brahmavar-Udupi: The sacredness of education is largely dependent on the examination system in our country. Education and Exams are like the two sides of the same coin. They are complementary and have a symbiotic relationship. One enhances and ennobles the other. The reverse is also true. One can demean the other.
What is happening these days is a sad commentary on the integrity of the entire educational administration at various levels. It can be school education or higher education. Scandals like question paper leakage are no surprise these days. Some are reported, and some are hushed up. Knowledgeable sources say that leakage occurs at regular intervals and the malaise is deep-rooted. There is a well-entrenched network involved in the leakage of question papers. Sadly teachers too are involved, and in many cases, they are the kingpin of the entire operation. Is fence eating the crop? There are many vested interests who participate actively in this diabolic exercise.
Enquiries often hit a dead-end, more often than not, at the behest of the powers-that-be. The guilty go scot-free and are back in the game further emboldened. The question is who is the bigger criminal – the ones who committed the crime or the ones who shielded them? In either case, the ones who play with the future of children for their greed for money should not be left undetected and unpunished. They deserve the severest punishment in accordance with the law of the land. Investigative agencies should be given unfettered freedom to get to the bottom of this grievous offence.
What is the net result of this heinous act of sabotaging the exam system and its sanctity? Sincere and hardworking students are the ones who suffer in this scenario. They are demoralized by a system that betrays them at the crucial stage of examination. Question paper leakage and faulty question papers are two of the curses students face too often these days. Bad question papers also demoralize the good students. Grace marks are a poor solace to them. Grace marks are sometimes a boon to the mediocre students and it may even help some to scrape through in a paper they expected to fail. So where is justice in the system?
It’s time our educational administrators found out the loop-holes in the system and rectified them. A fool-proof evaluation system has to be developed. We must learn from the evaluation systems of the developed world. They do not face crippling and embarrassing situations such as the ones we face. We should find ways and means to make evaluation an effective tool to measure the relative merit of students without scope for any malpractice, nepotism or corruption. Corruption in exams hits the very foundation of the country.
If we cannot trust those in the higher echelons of power in education and judiciary, where else is the hope? We always believed in our teachers and our judges, didn’t we? We thought they are above board. We believed that they are honest to the core and absolutely incorruptible. When shall we regain this trust? Until the time, the sanctity of exams, and the judicial process will continue to be under strain. We can see hope only if we cleanse the system, and entrust the job to those with unimpeachable credentials. I hope that day is not far off.
By Mathew C Ninan-Principal, Little Rock Indian School, Brahmavar, Udupi