In four years of implementation of the centralised medical entrance exam – NEET – there has been a shift of students from the TNBSE to CBSE. The post-Neet phase saw a 31% increase in students applying from CBSE and a 30% fall in students from TNSBSE, according to a report on the ‘Impact of NEET on Medical Admissions in Tamil Nadu’.
Since NEET is skewed towards the CBSE syllabus, there is a marked rise in their number, especially in science streams, to avail more MBBS seats in government colleges.
The data collected and analysed under the chairmanship of Justice AK Rajan has been categorised under different sections on medium instruction, boards, types of school to suggest how CBSE grew exponentially in four years.
“As CBSE students are on the rise to avail more MBBS seats in government colleges, to the tune of 26.83% in 2020-21 (post-NEET) from a meagre 0.11% in pre-NEET and the HSc students fared down from >65% to 43.13% in 2020-21, everyone is tempted to pursue CBSE,” said the report adding that those studying in the Tamil Nadu State Board of Secondary Education (TNSBSE) schools lose confidence in their studies.
Further analysis shows that this is the reason the percentage of the TNSBSE students applying for admission in MBBS has fallen down by approximately 30 per cent but that of the CBSE students increased by 31 per cent in the post-NEET period.
When one looks at the 12th standard students who studied under TNSBSE and tracks their performance for the past ten years it sees an “ever-increasing student size in HSC since 2011 till 2017 has slipped down to 12.7%, with a loss in student size of 113,322, between 2017 and 2020, in the post-NEET period.”
The data shows slip from 8,93,262 in 2017 to 7,79,940 in 2020.
Meanwhile, 12th standard students who studied through different mediums of instruction, the data shows the quantum of students who have studied 12th standard under TNSBSE and their chronological size.
Of the three categories mentioned – Thamizh, English and other languages – if students of Thamizh and English mediums are considered, which is significant, in the post-NEET period, the “Thamizh medium students size went down by 24.8% whereas, that of the English medium rose to 8.4% between the period of 2017 and 2020.”
In 2017, English medium was 3,28,054, Tamil medium at 5,63,157 and other languages at 2,051. In 2020, Tamil medium was 4,23,278, English medium was 3,55,734 and other languages 928.
With the gender classification of standard 12th students, there is data to suggest the migration to CBSE in the post NEET phase.
The trend for the past ten years reveals, “Between the boys and girls, the girls-students size is approximately 7% more than the boys throughout the decade.” The report has tables and data to imply that the actual size of the boys and girls fell by 14.4 per cent and 11.2 per cent respectively in 2020 compared to 2017.
The committee report suggests, “If this is seen with the facts and compared with the growth in size of CBSE students in Tamil Nadu, the reason for this downfall could be traced. Probably, the students would have migrated to the CBSE from TNSBSE.”
Further, the 12th standard students who studied in different types of schools in Tamil Nadu indicate that until 2016 both the government schools and government-aided schools have managed their student size stable, while the private schools showed steady growth in their student size.
“Post-NEET period, in the cases of government and government-aided schools, the student-size fell down by 18.5% and 14.1% respectively, whereas, in the same period, the private schools have maintained their student strength much unaltered,” said the report further concurring with the assertions made from earlier mentioned data that “they would have migrated to the CBSE.”
The overall percentage of science stream students in 12th standard in different school types in the Post-NEET period has dropped down from 43.03 per cent to 35.94 per cent. Though there was no such drop in the years before NEET.
There are similar trends observed in all types of institutions of government. Students of government-aided schools show 31.22 per cent reduction followed by that of the government (26.49 per cent) and private (24.88 per cent) in the science stream.
“But the trend was upward growth in the pre-NEET period. This indicates that the introduction of NEET has negatively impacted the student enrolment in the Science stream,” said the report.
According to the report, the probability is “the NEET has discouraged the students from enrolling in the Science stream in 12th (TNSBSE) and encouraged them to migrate to CBSE.”
If we take into consideration the year-wise MBBS admission – pre-NEET and post-NEET period, then it is evident how in the pre-NEET period the state board achieved majority seats, and compared to English medium students the Tamil medium students had obtained at least some share. The story is the same with the government students who had achieved some seats even though not much.
The post-NEET system has taken away even the little that was available resulting in further disproportionate seat sharing.
“The CBSE students exponentially increased their share to several folds in the post-NEET, while the English medium students had grown to become the largest seat holder in the Post-NEET from the status of the second largest holder in the pre-NEET period,” said the report.
“Until the 7.5% reservation was introduced, in 2020-21, the government students were the worst affected lot by the NEET,” it added.
As per the data of students belonging to various boards (TNSBSE/CBSE/Other) who had applied for and been allotted MBBS seats in Tamil Nadu medical colleges, both government and self-financed, for the past 10 years, if the size of the applicants who applied for and those who have secured admissions in MBBS program are compared between these groups (Boards), it is revealed that between Pre-NEET and post-NEET periods, “the rate of the applicants of the TNSBSE students has radically decreased from approximately 95% in pre-NEET period to 64.27% in 2020-21,” this is as opposed “to an exponential increase in the surging applicants of CBSE (from an average of 3.17% in pre-NEET to 32.26% in 2020-21),” said the report.
The percentage of the TNSBSE students applying for admission in MBBS fell down by approximately 30 per cent but that of the CBSE students increased by 31 per cent.
Studying admissions in both government and self-financed colleges there is a diametrically opposite pattern of admission from the TNSBSE and CBSE students.
“In the case of government college admissions, while an upward trend of > 65% seats were filled by the TNSBSE students in the pre-NEET period; it went down to the lowest 43.13% in 2020-21,” said the report.
In contrast, the CBSE students who were at a negligible rate (average 0.11 per cent) of admission in pre-NEET rose to a quantum jump of 26.83 per cent in 2020-21.
Further analysis shows “a huge rise in the admission of the CBSE Board students to 22.66 per cent in the government seats in the post-NEET period from a meagre 0.100% in the pre-NEET, while the rate of admission of the TNSBSE students to the government college fell from 70.11 per cent in the pre-NEET to 46.77 per cent in the post-NEET,” the report revealed.
The share of the other board candidates has also slightly increased from 0.243 per cent in the pre-NEET to 1.763 per cent in the post-NEET. A similar trend could be noticed in the case of self-financed college admission.
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