However, it is difficult to support the plan given by the education minister for having the exams in only three group-based subjects. After all, for both SSC and HSC students, Bangla, English and math are important. If we see the results of the exams over the past few years, we will see that the rate of failure is higher in English and math. And without performing well in these two subjects, it is difficult to go on with higher studies. So it would not be wise to simply carrying out mapping on these two subjects on the basis of the students JSC and SSC (in the case of HSC students) results. Educationists say that exams in Bangla, English and math are a must.

We believe that Bangla, English and math must not be dropped from assessment. Hopefully the pandemic will ease up within a couple of months and the government will have time to assess the students based on the exams and assignments. It would in no way be correct to drop these compulsory subjects.

Recently the executive director of UNICEF, Henrietta Fore, and UNESCO’s director general Audrey Azoulay, in a joint statement, said that millions of students were being deprived of education and urged for the educational institutions to be reopened. They said that studies can’t wait until infections come down to zero. We need to take this seriously. Bangladesh is among the 19 countries that have kept educations institutions closed for an extended period of time due to coronavirus.

When questioned about the UNICEF and UNESCO statement, education minister Dipu Moni said preparation will be taken to open the educational institutions as soon as the pandemic lessens. The rate of transmission is high in the country at the moment. No one is demanding that the educational institutions be opened at the moment.

The question is, why weren’t the educational institutions opened when the infection rates were low? And this is not just about schools, but about colleges and universities too. Millions of students have been stuck at home for a year and a half. Steps must immediately be taken to address the situation.

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