Disability rights activists have welcomed the move; Candidates who still want to take the exams can do so
The Tamil Nadu government has exempted private candidates with disabilities from taking the grade 12 supplementary exams, stating that they have all passed.
A government order to this effect stated that the Disability Welfare Officer wrote a letter stating that all students, including those in special schools across the state, had been declared released grade 12 following the cancellation of board exams due to COVID. 19th
Commissioner Johny Tom Varghese had said people with disabilities who should also take the supplementary exams as private candidates should be exempted in view of the COVID-19 situation and had asked the government to consider an exemption for them too.
On the decision of the Prime Minister, the Disability Welfare Office announced in the GO that all candidates with disabilities will be exempted from taking the supplementary exams in class 12, which are to begin on August 6th. of the Law on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities 2016, which states that the curriculum and examination system can be adapted accordingly to meet the needs of students with disabilities.
For these candidates, the government ordinance also states that the Ministry of Education will decide on the awarding of grades. However, the government has also stated that candidates with disabilities wishing to take the exams can do so but the grades obtained in the exams will be treated as final.
Following the cancellation of board exams due to COVID-19, the TN government announced earlier this year that supplementary exams would be held for around 39,000 private candidates as students received grades based on their performance in grades 10, 11 and 12 in public Audits and internal audits. These included people with disabilities who had registered for the exams.
Disability rights activists have welcomed the government’s move to exclude candidates with disabilities from supplementary exams this year.
R. Sathish Kumar, a member of the Disability Rights Alliance, said candidates with disabilities would have faced several difficulties if they had to take the exam. “Wearing a mask would have been difficult for people with cerebral palsy and other problems where they frequently drool and cause breathing problems. Sitting in close proximity to clerks and using public transport to get to the exam centers were the main concerns, ”he said.
Mr Sathish went on to say that preparing for these exams is difficult even for candidates with autism and other related issues, as the pandemic has significantly disrupted their routines, making it difficult to ensure consistent preparation. “Last year when the exams were held, we noticed issues that private candidates with disabilities faced and we are grateful to the government for excluding them this year,” he added.
TMN Deepak, a disability rights activist and founder of the Movement of the 3rd Immense.
“When we talk about the fact that students cannot repeat and prepare consistently in these uncertain times, it is doubly difficult for candidates with disabilities. Parents in particular have been very concerned about how their children would cope with the exam over the past few months, ”he said. In June, Mr Deepak filed a complaint with the government requesting that disabled candidates be banned from taking exams.