CBSE Informs Supreme Court that Class X and XII Exams Are Cancelled

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The Central Board of Secondary Education declared its formal decision on whether or not to hold this year’s exams. On 25th June 2020, the board had informed the Supreme Court that in wake of COVID-19 the exams of 10th and 12th board stand cancelled.

Brief Facts of the Case 

The CBSE postponed its Class X and Class XII Board Exams due to coronavirus and lockdown situation. But on May 18, the Ministry of Human Resource Development released a revised time table for the pending board exams. Some of the parents whose children’s were to appear the CBSE board exams this year filed the petition. They filed this petition through Advocate Rishi Malhotra. He highlighted the various difficulties that will be posed if the exams were conducted as scheduled. 

In this petition, that parents contended that forcing the children to appear for the Board Exams could expose them to COVID-19. It is a risk for them to appear for exams amid a rising number of coronavirus cases in India. The petitioners prayed that the exam notification be cancelled. They further suggested that the results be announced on the basis of the examinations already conducted. And for the remaining subjects the marks to be calculated on the basis of internal assessment marks. After listening to the plea the Supreme Court had advised the board to consider cancellation of the exam. 

Earlier on 23rd June 2020, the board informed the Court that the formal decision pertaining to this matter should be taken shortly. Senior counsel Mr Jaideep Gupta appeared on behalf of the ICSE board. The Court granted them the liberty to follow the decision taken by the CBSE, with necessary changes. The Court then listed the matter on 25th June 2020 at 2.00 pm.  

Court Proceedings

A three-judge Bench of Justices AM Khanwilkar, Dinesh Maheshwari and Sanjiv Khanna heard the above petition. 

CBSE 10 board exams stand cancelled

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta made it clear that the exams scheduled for July 1 stand cancelled. He further elaborated the CBSE’s scheme for the calculation of marks. It will take into account the marks scored in the past three exams. It clarified that it would not be holding optional exams for class 10 students and that they stand cancelled. 

CBSE 12 board exams optional

He further stated that the Class 12 exams will be conducted “as soon as situation is conducive”. The Board will assess those who opt-out of the exams that it may hold in the future according to the exams they took in the past. 

Results to be announced

The Board will announce results on the basis of assessment by July 15. Students may secure further admissions on the basis of those marks. 

ICSE exams cancelled

Counsel appearing on behalf of the ICSE board agreed with the proposition of CBSE. It decided that the Class 10th and 12th exams for the ICSE board will also be cancelled. Further, the Court clarified saying “We will declare the assessment results at once. Later, we may hold the board exams“.  

Finally, the Court has decided to pass the final orders on this whole matter on 26th June 2020. 

Let us pass formal orders tomorrow. You can file a fresh notification too and clear instructions that a final decision of a later exam will be taken at the Central level and not at the state level. This will have repercussions on other exams.” – Justice A M Khanwilkar 

The Court was to decide on the matter on 26th June at 10.00 am.

Court’s Decision

On 26th June 2020, the Supreme Court allowed the Centre and CBSE to cancel the pending Board Exams for Class 10 and Class 12. It permitted the Board to award marks to students on the basis of internal marks.

As a result, CBSE also announced that the results of this year’s Board Exams for Class 10 and Class 12 would be published on July 15th.

“Results will now be declared following an alternate assessment scheme. Class 12 students will get an option to appear for exams later to improve their score. However, for students who chose to sit for exams, their marks in the exams will be treated as the final score,” Exam Controller Sanyam Bhardwaj said in an official notification issued by CBSE.

However, he added that the Board shall not be giving Class 10 students the chance to appear for improvement exams. Their result, as declared by the Board, shall be treated final.


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