Two years after viral photos of mass cheating in high school exams in Bihar blew open the holes in the state's education system, the results show a downward trend. Compared to 2015, when more than 75% students had passed the senior secondary exams, only one out of three students has passed this year in Bihar. This is lower than even last year's abysmal show where two-thirds of the students passed the exam.
While state officials claim this poor showing is a reflection of stricter checking following last year's topper scam--where four of the Bihar toppers were found to be part of an exam racket--what it really reflects is how broken the education system is in the state.
The pass percentage has dipped by over 30% in Bihar, and just over 8% students managed to get a first division. Compared to the national topper, who got 99.6% overall, Bihar's topper scored 86.2%. These marks are not a reflection on these young boys and girls, but on a state that has its highest budget allocation to education along with several welfare schemes to make going to school easier and more accessible.
Why is a state that has historically sent more IAS officers than most other Indian states faring so poorly in these exams? Despite allocating significant resources to education, why are more students failing every year? What are its plans to reverse the trend? The state must answer.
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