The Literacy Mission has been chastised for its plan to hold exams without classes.

Literacy Mission to hold the Class IV and Class VII equivalency exams in the second week of December has been criticized by literacy instructors, or ‘preraks.’ They claim that the students are ill-prepared for the exams because they have not received adequate instruction.
The preraks have written to General Education Minister V Sivankutty, pleading with him to order the literacy mission to postpone the exam. They demanded that the exam be held only after sufficient classes have been provided to the students.
In January and February of last year, the students enrolled in the Class IV and Class VII literacy programs. However, due to the Covid outbreak, their classes had to be postponed for several months. At the moment, online classes are only available to students in Class X and Higher Secondary equivalency programs.
“In the aftermath of the pandemic, we were told to participate in Covid prevention activities organized by local governments. Some of the students have been unable to attend even one class,” said A A Santhosh, vice-president of the Kerala Saksharatha Preraks’ Association.
The preraks also claimed that the literacy mission gave them strict orders to find a sufficient number of candidates for the December exam. The literacy mission’s authorities, on the other hand, denied such a charge. “In October, the district coordinators convened a meeting of preraks to set the examination dates. Only after gathering their feedback did it become clear that the exams would be held in December only for those students who wished to participate,” said P S Sreekala, director of the Literacy Mission. She said there were 6,222 and 9,498, respectively, candidates who chose to take the Class IV and Class VII equivalency exams in December.
While admitting that classes could not be held in full due to Covid, Sreekala stated that there was a high demand for the exam from students who used self-study or had family members assist them in their studies. “After proper classroom-based instruction, a separate exam will be conducted at a later stage for other learners,” she added.

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