CBSE Syllabus Slashed for "Covid-19 Respite"

CBSE students will study a 30 per cent shorter syllabus this academic year as part of a “big respite” announced on Tuesday in the fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic.
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This article is part of an editorial series on Covid-19

CBSE students around the world will study a 30 per cent smaller syllabus as part of a “big respite” in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. The decision was announced on Tuesday.

The CBSE, India’s largest school board, tweeted it has reduced some topics to cover in the 2020/21 academic year, which started in April for CBSE-affiliated schools.

It closely followed a series of tweets on Tuesday by Dr Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishan, India’s Union Cabinet Minister for Human Resource Development, who said “it has been decided to rationalize syllabus up to 30% by retaining the core concepts”.

The change applies to grades nine through to 12, for which the reduced syllabus “will not be part of the topics for Internal Assessment and year-end Board Examination,” the CBSE said in a circular to heads of CBSE-affiliated schools.

This year, some CBSE Grade 10 and 12 board exams were delayed and eventually cancelled because of the pandemic.

Details of the deleted portions of this school year’s curriculum have been uploaded via links on a CBSE webpage.

CBSE has more than 21,270 affiliated schools in India and over 220 schools in 25 foreign countries – including 81 in the UAE. There are roughly 9,500 CBSE students in grade 10 in the UAE and about 6,500 in grade 12.

Schools have welcomed the move.

“This reduction is good for students as they felt burdened in the higher classes, especially by Grade 12 science subjects. We used to get feedback from students about the vastness of the subjects,” said Professor M Abu Bakr, principal of Scholars Indian School, Ras Al Khaihmah, speaking to UAE newspaper, Gulf News.

Rafia Zafar Ali, principal of Leaders Private School, Sharjah, also said the lighter study load brings “great relief” for students, “especially as they have been studying under so much pressure”.

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