Education Roundup 2021: With many firsts, here’s how education sector transformed in 2021

The education industry witnessed a lot of bumps in the year 2021 with board exams being cancelled to delay in NEET results and doctors’ ongoing strike for delay in NEET PG counselling. The second wave of Covid-19 obstructed the lives of all, with students worse hit. 

While the year was a bumpy road, there were many noteworthy changes and reforms introduced this year. As the year 2021 comes to an end, let’s have a look at some of the noteworthy firsts the education industry experienced this year.

— JEE main 2021 – 4 attempts to redeem the luck 

In first, National Testing Agency conducted the Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) main exam four times in the year. The exams were conducted in the months of January, February, July and August. Candidates were allowed to appear in all attempts to improve their scores. Prior to this, candidates were only allowed two chances to appear in the JEE main exam. 

— CBSE board result 2021: Highest pass percentage ever recorded

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This year CBSE board recorded highest ever pass percentage in both class 10 and 12 board exams. The CBSE class 10 students recorded an overall pass percentage of 99.04 per cent while 99.37 pass percent was recorded for class 12. 

The board results were calculated based on a special assessment scheme and exams were canclled due to the Covid-19 pandemic. 

— Women candidates allowed to take the NDA exam for the first time

Over a year after its landmark verdict granting permanent commission to women officers of the Indian Army serving under Short Service Commission, the Supreme Court, in an interim order allowed women candidates to sit for the National Defence Academy (NDA) entrance exam. 

As a result, nearly a third of the applications for the National Defence Academy’s entrance examination held this year were women. 

— Schools reopened after the longest halt of 1.5 years

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After a gap of 1.5 years, schools reopened their gates for the students to resume offline classes. This was the longest time when schools had to shut their offline operations owing to the Covid-19 pandemic. Students were happy and excited to meet their peers and teachers whereas schools welcomed their students with all pomp and show. 

— First gender-neutral uniform introduced in India

To promote inclusivity and gender neutrality, Valayanchirangara government lower primary school, near Perumbavoor in Ernakulam district of Kerala, which has a strength of 754 students introduced a new uniform for their students– a 3/4th shorts and shirt, irrespective of the gender.

The new dress code was planned in 2018 and was introduced in the lower primary section of the school and this academic year when the schools were reopened after the pandemic induced lockdown, it has been extended to all students.

— CBSE’s decision to conduct two board exams in one academic year

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CBSE came out with a plan for class 10 and 12 board exams for the academic year 2021-2022. Instead of one board exam at the end of the year, the academic session has been bifurcated into two terms. The term I exams were held in November-December 2021. This is the first time that the CBSE board conducted board exams in a term-wise manner.

— CBSE conducts MCQ-based board exams for Class 10, 12

JPSC answer key Candidates who appeared in the exam can check the provisional answer key on the official website – Image)

While CBSE introduced the system of two-term board exams, it also transformed the entire board exam pattern. This year, class 10 and 12 students attempted the board exam on an OMR sheet. The MCQ-based question paper was introduced for the first time where students had to mark their answers in an OMR sheet. 


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