JEE dropout at 26% as covid keeps candidates away1 min read . Updated: 10 Sep 2020, 03:35 PM IST
According to education ministry data, out of 858,000 registered students, only 635,000 appeared for the exam held between 1 and 6 September
NEW DELHI : One out of every four students who registered for the Joint Entrance Examination (JEE Main) did not turn up, a record dropout rate for the test that pre-screens candidates for India’s top engineering schools.
According to education ministry data, out of 858,000 registered students, only 635,000 appeared for the exam held between 1 and 6 September, an absenteeism of 26%. The number of missing—223,000—is more than four times the average number of students who dropped out in the last three editions.
The absenteeism reflects fear among students who had demanded postponing the exam, given the increasing number of covid-19 cases in the country. Besides, travel has been affected in flood-hit Assam, Bihar, and Odisha.
The absenteeism in the January edition was roughly 5.7%, with 921,261 students registering and 869,010 appearing for the entrance exam.
The April 2019 edition saw 54,686 students or 5.8% drop out. In the January 2019 edition, 54,729 students or 6.25% did not turn up for the exam.
The conduct of the JEE Main and the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) had led to a national debate, with students calling for a deferment. The issue went to the Supreme Court, which rejected further delay in conducting the examination.
A review petition in the apex court by six states, including West Bengal, Maharashtra, and Punjab, was also rejected by the top court.
JEE Main concluded on 6 September and the NEET exam for admission to medical colleges is scheduled to take place on 13 September.
“Out of 8.58 lakh JEE Main applicants, 6.35 lakh appeared for the examination. The central and respective state governments assured all possible assistance to the students, for which I compliment all the state governments. This entire effort displayed the spirit of cooperative federalism," education minister Ramesh Pokhriyal tweeted.
“Any further delay of the examinations would not have been in the interest of our hardworking students and their plans for college admissions," the minister added.