‘Teacher is the main player in the teaching learning process of the new age’


-says Mr Gerry Arathoon, Chief Executive & Secretary, CISCE, in conversation with The Progressive Teacher

‘The Council for Indian School Certificate Examinations (CISCE) has introduced unique identification (UID) numbers for students of Classes X and XII. After coming across issues such as handing over wrong question papers to students, a hacker mining marks data and other such issues, CISCE has taken this step. The purpose behind introducing these unique identification numbers is speedy evaluation and ensuring confidentiality’, said Mr Gerry Arathoon, Chief Executive & Secretary, CISCE.

He also expressed his views on some of the following questions posed by The Progressive Teacher.

1. What is the USP of the Council?

Gerry Arathoon

The unique service that the Council provides to the Nation is affordable quality education through the medium of English upto Class X and XII levels. With its syllabuses comparable with international standards, the Council’s examinations prepare the students in different streams – Science, Humanities, Commerce, technical and vocational education and enable them to be confident and competent global citizens.

Britain’s UCAS (Universities & Colleges Admission Service) recognizes ISC (Class 12) Certificate for admission into British Universities.
The Council believes in maintaining high academic standards so that its students shine in every sphere. Besides, there is greater emphasis on the development and testing of the thinking skills and creativity of the students. Further the Council nurtures the development of soft-virtues such as empathy, concern, initiative, community service, gender equality and environment awareness.
The English standard of CISCE has always been beneficial to our students in their endeavors.

2. The examination system of today is called ‘archaic’. How do you respond to this with reference to the Council?

The Council’s examination system is student-friendly and has incorporated all the modern reforms in conducting the examinations. It ensures that students write the examinations in a stress-free atmosphere and has assigned 15 minutes for reading the question papers before answering. We are the first Board to have introduced this facility. Besides, by introducing objective type questions, short answer questions and application based questions, rote memorization is reduced. The Council offers a basket of subjects to choose from and different combination of subjects are permitted. Offering choice of subjects and provision of additional subjects too promote individual interests and needs. The provision of internal assessment also helps continuous and comprehensive evaluation of pupils in their learning activities. We remain committed to make further educational innovations in 2015 and beyond.

3. How can school education today prepare global citizens of tomorrow?

Since ancient times, education has been considered a preparation for life. School education should anticipate the requirements of the global citizens of tomorrow and accordingly update the curriculum, and the teaching – learning processes. Contribution of modern technology and the example of developed countries should be adapted judiciously.

4. How is the teaching and learning process becoming increasingly seamless, flowing back and forth between the students and teachers in the 21st century?

This is an exaggerated statement. As we know, teaching and learning is a bipolar process and the students and teachers both have important roles to play. The teacher should elicit curiosity and interest among students. Students through their involvement and active participation should enable the teacher to perform his best. Both students and teachers are accountable.

5. “Learning by doing” is the new education mantra. What is the Council’s take on this?

Learning by doing is a very sensible mantra. Realizing this the Council envisages practical work/projects in all subjects. Done under the guidance of subject teachers, projects/practical work would benefit the learners. The Council’s syllabuses promote active participation of learners and the principle of learning by discovery.

6. What are the new initiatives/changes the Council is planning?

The Council has already taken some initiatives and is planning
many more. Some of them are:

  • Complete computerization of Council’s transactions with schools – affiliations, registration of candidates, etc.
  • Revision of Class X, XII and CVE syllabuses.
  • Introduction of some checks and balances to make the internal assessments more objective.
  • Apart from our regular in-service programmes for teachers held annually at our Kolkata Centre, plans are afoot to organize and conduct in-service programmes at various centres in India to facilitate the participation of more teachers. Besides, the Research and Development wing of the Council is regularly updating the Council’s curricula, taking into account the changes and demands in the field of education.

7. What is your message for the new age teachers?

Dear teacher, you are the main player in the teaching-learning processes of the new age. Your example, wisdom and expertise would inspire and enlighten your students. As a friend, philosopher and guide, you can lead your students to be well informed, morally upright and socially aware global citizens.