It is time for admission to colleges. Delhi University introduced common admission form for its colleges and allowed colleges to fix cut-off percentages. Sri Ram College of Commerce (SRCC) fixed 100% as cut-off percentage. Some have criticised it. P. C. Jain, principal of SRCC, defended it. Science students who do not get admission in SRCC can go to IIT or IIM. Best way to do away with stress is to have no marks, no examinations and no evaluations and have lottery to select students.
Some other colleges had cut-off percentages in the range of 95%-99%. Students who do not get admission in the first list may get admission in subsequent lists.
Some years back it was difficult to score 100 marks. Now with objective type questions it is possible for students to score 100% marks. In any major city good colleges are few and students who want admissions in them are many times more than seats available and hence cut-off percentages are high in such colleges.
The problem in Delhi gets magnified due to media presence. Problems of students in other cities do not get prominence.
If science students with 97% marks or less want to switch to commerce they should go to a college where admission is available instead of demanding they be given admission in place of commerce students who have got 100% marks. Arts and commerce students cannot switch to science. Those who did not study biology in junior college cannot get admission in medical colleges. To get admission to engineering college one should have studied science in junior college. The argument that students are not able to make their minds at junior college level and those who took science in junior college should be able to get admission to B.Com in a college of their choice at a percentage less than that of commerce students is wrong.
The problem of admissions would have been more serious if there had been grade system with students who would have got 91%-100% marks being in A grade. For one seat there may be more than 100 applicants with A grade and rejections could result in riots.
One solution is to have colleges with online classes. Lectures can be webcast and students can attend them at home. Another solution is to have classes in stadia with protection from sun and rain. Students can have swipe cards to mark attendance. Biometric system is better. What lecturer writes on blackboard can be shown on giant screens.
Outlook has come out with second instalment on telephone tapping. This includes a bureaucrat who wanted Rs.8 crores bribe, a minister in UP who wanted a bribe from engineer and the wife of an air vice marshal who talked to a beautician about prostitution racket.
Corrupt people whose conversations have been tapped must be exposed. Recently there have been some cases of high profile corruption. Two bureaucrats in Indiaâ€™s home ministry have been arrested. One of them took bribes for approving bulletproof jackets. Head of MCI who took bribes to grant recognition to medical colleges has been arrested. Three persons in CRPF who sold arms and ammunition to Naxals have been arrested. Naxals had used those arms and ammunition against CRPF jawans in Dantewada.
There must be many bureaucrats who have taken bribes whose conversations are tapped. The bureaucrat who took Rs.8 crores bribe must have taken bribes before that.
An industrialist had sent a starlet to Calcutta. Who wanted the starlet in Calcutta? What did the industrialist received for sending the starlet? Who was the starlet?
Tatas have defended their PR firm saying theirs was legitimate lobbying.
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Kapil Sibal, Indiaâ€™s HRD Minister, has announced plans for abolition of Board Examinations for Std X and Std XII. He wants grades to be given in place of marks. He wants one Board for India. There are many other plans. I want to comment on exams and marks.
The reason given for abolition of Board Examinations is they cause stress for students. Examinations by themselves are not cause for stress. In big cities good colleges are few and High Schools are many. To get admission in good colleges there is tough competition. Sometimes 90% marks are not enough. There are some colleges for which there is not much competition. The solution is to increase the number of good colleges. There has to be some criteria for admission to colleges. If Board Examinations are done away with there will be tests for admissions to colleges. There will be stress to pass those tests. The stress is more for students who want admission to engineering or medical colleges.
Marks give the exact percentage. Grades give general percentage. A grade may mean 90% – 100% marks. If there are 50 seats and 100 students with A grade apply how will be admissions decided? In one college a student with 98% may get admission and a student with 97% may not get admission. If there is one seat and both have got A grade and applied on what basis admission will be made?
What system USA and UK follow is not our business. Their system need not be better than what we follow. These countries are bankrupt.
A student who wants to develop her personality while in high school can do so. S/he can spend time in extra-curricular activities but should not expect to be treated as equal to students who study more and get more marks.
When there are more applicants than seats there will be those who do not get admissions. Those who get admissions will be happy. Some of those who do not get admissions will demand change in system. In Delhi admission to Nursery used to be by tests. It was said that the tests caused stress to children. Tests were abolished. Point system was introduced. A child of the locality will get five points. A girl of the locality will get five points. A child with sibling in the school will get five points. There were some other criteria on which points were given. As usual applicants were more than seats. The parents of those who did not get seats wanted to revert to tests.