A school in India has been criticised after asking students to wear cardboard boxes over their heads during exams in a bid to prevent cheating.
Officials at the Bhagat Pre-University College in the southern state of Karnataka have apologised after a set of photos documenting the bizarre anti-cheating process went viral.
It showed the students wearing boxes with a square cut out of the front, preventing them to see anywhere but right in front of them, to stop them from copying their peers.
Karnataka: Students were made to wear cardboard boxes during an exam at Bhagat Pre-University College in Haveri, reportedly to stop them from cheating. (16.10.2019) pic.twitter.com/lPR5z0dsUs
— ANI (@ANI) October 18, 2019
A junior college administrator has publicly apologised to district officials for the incident. MB Satish told BBC Hindi he was sorry for the unusual method of preventing cheating.
He claimed the school had only implemented the measure on an ‘experimental basis’ after hearing of it being used elsewhere.
Satish also said it had been done with the students’ consent, adding they’d even brought their own boxes.
He told the BBC:
There was no compulsion of any kind. You can see in the photograph that some students were not wearing it.
Some who wore it removed it after 15 minutes, some after 20 minutes and we ourselves asked them to remove it after one hour.
Officials in this particular region of Mumbai are said to have rushed to the school to complain as soon as they were alerted to the images.
SC Peerjade, deputy director of the local pre-University Education Board, described the anti-cheating method as ‘inhumane’.
He told the Times of India:
When I got a message on this, I immediately went to the college and ordered the management to stop the practice.
I also issued a notice to the college management and am contemplating disciplinary action against them for implementing this idea.
School officials have now confirmed they’ve stopped using the bizarre practice and are said to be co-operating with the school board’s directive.
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Emma Rosemurgey is an NCTJ trained Journalist who started her career by producing The Royal Rosemurgey newspaper in 2004, which kept her family up to date with the goings on of her sleepy north east village. She graduated from the University of Central Lancashire in Preston and started her career in regional newspapers before joining Tyla (formerly Pretty 52) in 2017, and progressing onto UNILAD in 2019.