The state government has decided to allow candidates who have tested positive for COVID-19 to appear for the board exams at a later date provided they submit RT-PCR certificates as proof of having contracted the infection.
The decision was taken at a meeting convened by Education Minister Lahkmen Rymbui on Friday to review the preparedness of the Meghalaya Board of School Education (MBOSE) for conducting the board examinations.
Nearly one lakh students are set to appear for their Higher Secondary School Leaving Certificate (HSSLC) and Secondary School Leaving Certificate (SSLC) examinations which will commence from April 16 and April 19 respectively.
A total of 65,787 students will appear for the SSLC examination while 32,506 will appear for the HSSLC examination in the different centres spread across the eleven districts of the state.
Speaking to media persons after the meeting, Rymbui said, "We have decided that in case any candidates got infected by COVID-19, they will be given a chance to appear for the exams at a later date on production of an RT-PCR certificate."
He said taking into consideration the number of students who will be appearing for the board examinations, the department has decided to come up with such an action plan.
Rymbui also informed that protocols are already in place and have been circulated to all in charge of the various examination centres across the state.
"Proper protocols have been issued to prevent the spread of COVID-19 during the conduct of the board examinations," he said.
"The MBOSE has instructed all the in charge of the examination centres to have four-six halls for the conduct of the exams instead of just two-three halls and also to have at least one or two (standby) halls in case there is the detection of COVID-19 case, the hall can be sealed and we could use another hall (which is put on standby) the next day," he further added.
Expressing hope for smooth conduct of the examinations, the minister also urged the students not to panic in case anybody is infected with COVID-19.
"I am confident that the students will do well in their exams without any hindrance. I am (also) very hopeful that we will sail through and no untoward incident will take place," he stated.