KATHMANDU, July 1: A National Examination Board (NEB) has just come into existence, following approval of the eighth amendment to the Education Act.
According to the Department of Education (DoE), the Higher Secondary Education Board (HSEB) and the Office of the Controller of Examinations, that used to hold the SLC exams, have now been dissolved.
“These two bodies have been transformed into NEB,” said Khaga Raj Baral, director general at DoE. “NEB will carry out the activities concerning examinations for beginners to class 12 while the Curriculum Development Center will develop and revise curricula for the entirety of school education,” he added.
NEB will consist of a board headed by a chairperson and including a vice-chairperson, a member-secretary and board members. The government will appoint the NEB officials including the chairperson while the secretary at the Ministry of Education will be ex officio vice-chairperson. HSEB member secretary Narayan Koirala has been nominated member-secretary of NEB. However, the government is yet to appoint the chairperson, who will be recommended by a committee chaired by the Public Service Commission chief.
The first meeting of the NEB chaired by MoE Secretary Bishwa Prakash Pandit was held on Thursday. The meeting decided to work on necessary policies, rules and guidelines. “The work handled by HSEB will be carried out by NEB from now onwards,” said MoE officials.
The Office of the President on Wednesday approved the eighth amendment to the Education Act 1972, as per Article 113 (2) of the Constitution of Nepal 2073 (2016). The amendment bill was approved by Parliament about a month ago.
NEB has been formed in place of the Higher Secondary Education Board. Class 10 exams will now be taken at the regional/provincial level while Class 8 exams will be conducted by the district. With the amendment of the act, Class 12 exams will become the School Leaving Certificate (SLC) board exam, according to MoE.
The amended act envisions classes 1 to 8 as school level or basic/elementary education, with classes 9 to 12 comprising secondary level. Under the system existing hitherto, classes 1 to 5 constituted primary education, classes 6 to 8 lower secondary education, classes 9 to 10 secondlary and classes 11 to 12 higher secondarylevel. “The whole school system will be operated under DoE,” said the MoE officials.
MoE has, meanwhile, revised its earlier decision on the minimum grade (C+) for enrolment in class 11. It now allows students who scored D+ to study in class 11. However, the earlier decision mandating C+ for class 11 Science has not been changed.
The amended act also provisions two categories of private schools--new ones operating under trusts and the old ones under the company act, free education up to class 12, transfer of teachers as civil servants and their evaluation and promotion on the basis of school results, according to MoE. It also sorts out the decades-long problem of temporary teachers, it is stated.
The new act also provisions a National Education Council, and the National Examination Board and Education Review Office will be revitalized.
According to MoE, the amendment has officially come into effect following its approval by the President. “Education Regulations will be formulated soon to flesh out the amendment,” said the MoE officials.