AP not Ready for Single Common Entrance Test

Andhra Pradesh is indifferent to the Centre’s plan to adopt the single entrance test system for admissions into medical, engineering and other cours- es. It claims local students are doing well and there is no need to change the system.
There will be no reprieve any time soon for lakhs of students who will have to appear for multiple entrance exams after 10+2, to get admissions to engineering, medical and other courses.

The ambitious plans of Union minister for human resource development, Mr Kapil Sibal, for “one nationone syllabus” and a “single national common entrance test” have come to naught thanks to stiff resistance from big states such as Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal.

Though the idea was conceived by Mr Sibal in February 2010, there has been no response from the state government. The intention was good: to reduce stress for students, who have to take several entrance examinations for medical or engineering courses, and also save the money that goes into providing coaching for all these different exams.

So indifferent is the state government to the Centre’s proposal that it has not even sent its ministers from the secondary and higher education departments for the meetings conducted by the HRD ministry to hammer out a consensus. It just sent officials from the departments concerned who were confined to the role of spectators in the meetings and did not participate in the discussions.
The contention of the state government is that there is no need to change the existing pattern at 10+2 level since students from Andhra Pradesh are performing exceedingly well in national-level competitive exams like IIT-JEE, AIEEE, JIPMER, AFMC etc, and are bagging a majority of seats in prestigious engineering and medical colleges across the country.

The government feels that the Intermediate education system has been giving excellent results for three decades and it cannot agree to change it without consulting students, parents, teachers and other stakeholders.

“We cannot take decisions hastily over such issues that involve the future of lakhs of students. The Centre should first come out with the draft national syllabus.
This has to be debated at the state-level with all the stake holders. The Centre should also provide clarity on the admissions policy as different states have different reservation policies and local/non-local issues.

Unless these are addressed, we cannot commit to implementing the one nation-onesyllabus and single national entrance exam at 10+2 level,” said Mr Damodar Raja Narasimha, the higher education. minister There is no likelihood of the common entrance test for various courses being instituted by 2013, as envisaged by the HRD ministry, because students have to be informed of such a change at least two or three years in advance, before they embark on the Intermediate course.

Admissions to Intermediate courses this year are already completed and students will have to pursue the current syllabus till 2013 and appear for competitive exams like Eamcet, IIT-JEE, AIEEE etc as per the existing pattern.
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