Board Examination, Revisited

For past few weeks, I’ve been reading in the Times of India news items on Examination results and College entrance. The keywords like – Top scores, Cut off marks, First list, preferred courses, college preference, etc all reminds me of that time in my life I wish I could forget :)

I’ve done most of my schooling and college in Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh. As Bryan Adams crooned “Those were the best days of my life…” but it had some days that is best forgotten

One thing I must mention is that during my studying years most of my thickest friends from my class have been the brightest students. As any bright students, they were the source of admiration of other students. And I thought, me in their company would get a share of the admiration (or that is what my developing mental faculty at that time used to think). But during the examination period and the results thereof they became my source of depression and dejection.

The 10th Board Exams:

In the great Indian Education Challenge, the 10th board exam is the first and important hurdle that students need to cross. Teachers, at the start of the year, put the fear of the exams in you by saying that all that your life depends on the performance of this crucial exam. According to them, all the exams so far has been club cricket, the real game is the board exams. The competition was not between the 60 odd students in the class, it was between lakhs of students, school Vs. school, ‘I’m the best’ of one school with ‘I’m the best’ of another school

I was confident about my performance before the start of the 10th exams. It was a known fact that our internal exams are so tough that sailing through the board exams would be a breeze

The first seed of doubt was sown by my Hindi teacher. As any South Indian student, Hindi as a subject had been my closest experience to physical and mental torture. While leaving the exam centre after giving my Hindi Exam, I bumped into my Hindi teacher who said “I’m not sure of you passing this subject”. That statement made hell out of the exam holidays…till the results came out.

Having resigned to hear my disastrous performance in the examination….it was an agonizing wait. To be on the safe side, I had to hide my hall ticket number. In the days before Internet, it was the newspaper office where the exam result news would first appear and be displayed…. On the day of the results, I too joined the sea of students to check out my results. Low on expectation and high on clearing my doubt… I checked for my roll number.. Nothing in third division, not there in second division….I thought all was lost. Finally, I decided that a hopeless glance in the first division list would complete my ordeal…and surprise, Surprise…. There was my roll number… That moment of euphoria.. I had only one desire, to get my hands on my Hindi teacher.

My teachers said that the 10th exams were the most important exam in a student’s life… But today I realize that every day in life is an important exam.

My teachers lied.



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