THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The state government’s decision to grant recognition to the Class XII equivalency programme, conducted by the State Literacy Mission, for higher studies and promotion purposes seems to have made a positive impact.
The number of candidates attempting various equivalency programmes has seen a sharp rise since July 2018 when the government recognised Class XII equivalency on a par with the state higher secondary course.
While only 6,124 candidates took the Class IV and Class XI equivalency exams in 2016-17, the number increased to 11,233 in 2017-18. In 2018-19, the number increased more than three fold to touch 34,900. These include 19,950 candidates for Class IV equivalency and 14,950 for class VII. The candidates comprised people between the 15-88 age group.
Of the 34,900 candidates who attempted the Class VII and Class IV equivalency, over 21,000 were women. The number of Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe candidates for the examination was 5,050 and 1,020 respectively. A total of 64 differently-abled candidates also took the examination.
A special feature of this year’s Class IV and Class VII equivalency exam was the turnout from various jails in the state. As many as 44 jail inmates took the equivalency examination this year.
Those who pass the Class VII equivalency programme will be eligible to enrol for the Class X equivalency examination, the certificate of which will enable the candidate to attend PSC examination and enrol for higher studies.