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The Supreme Court Monday asked the Maharashtra government why it was differently treating two sets of students with varying performances in the Indian Certificate of Secondary Education (ICSE) exams while admiting them to Class 11.

An apex court bench of Justice V.S. Sirpurkar and Justice Cyriac Joseph sought the clarification from senior counsel Harish Salve, representing the state secondary school examination board.

Salve earlier contended that in case of a ICSE board student who succeeds in five papers, the grading will be decided on the average of those five papers.

In case of a student who clears all the seven papers, the grading will be decided on the average of all the seven papers.

The court wanted to know the basis of calculating grades in this manner.

It wondered how these two sets of students could be placed on the same pedestal.

The court said that the dichotomy of the situation was that the student who does well in all the seven subjects will be evaluated on the basis of performance in all seven subjects, while the one who focuses on five subjects and fails in two will be evaluated on the basis of performance in five subjects.

The court was hearing a petition by the Maharashtra government and its secondary school examination board challenging the Bombay High Court verdict which had struck down the “Best Five” formula espoused by the state government for admission to Class 11.


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