We get queries from parents that why the school is promoting/participating in some specific Olympiads/exams. our response to those common queries is given below:

Q- Which are the olympiads/exams that the school will participate in or promote?

Ans. - The school will help students participate in / promote the following Olympiads:

Olympiads that school will promote

Olympiads that school will help students participate in

  1. National Standard Examination (NSE) conducted by IAPT in Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Astronomy, Junior Science is the first step for the worldwide Olympiad.
    1. After the NSE examination, the next step for the eligible students is the Indian National Olympiad (IMO) conducted by Homi Bhabha Center for Science Education (HBCSE), Mumbai.(www.hbcse.tifr.res.in)
  2. Pre-Regional Mathematical Olympiad (PRMO) is organized by the Homi Bhabha Centre for Science Education (HBCSE) on behalf of the National Board for Higher Mathematics (NBHM) of the Department of Atomic Energy (DAE), Government of India. This programme is one of the major initiatives undertaken by the NBHM.
  3. Zonal Computing Olympiad (ZCO-2019) and Zonal Informatics Olympiad (ZIO) leading to International Olympiad in Informatics
  4. The International Earth Science Olympiad - IESO conducted by International Geoscience Education Organization (IGEO).
  5. The International Geography Olympiad (iGeo) conducted by International Geographical Union.
  6. International Astronomy Olympiad – Junior (IAO – Junior): Participation is organized by the National Council of Science Museums (NCSM).
  7. Asian Physics Olympiad (APhO): Participation is organized by IAPT. Students aspiring for this Olympiad must appear in the first stage NSEP exam followed by the second stage INPhO exam.
  1. ICAS Assessment - Mcmillan Education
  2. ASSET Talent Search - Educational Initiatives
  3. National Talent Search Examination (NTSE)

Note - All these exams are for middle years students (grade 8 onward), IESO is grade 9 onward, Asian Physics Olympiad (APhO) is for Grade 12th

Q- Why is the school only participating in these specific olympiads/exams and not others?

Ans - Olympiads have become the new status symbol for parents. These Olympiads (above mentioned) that we promote are very prestigious and are respected by most students, professors, parents and teachers around the world alike. These are truly international in nature where students from around the world gather to compete with each other and win medals. The medals go on to contribute to scholarships as high as a 100% in some renowned universities over the world. There are 14 International Olympiads recognized by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). A few of them mentioned above that we promoted last year.

Unfortunately, in India, they are not valued as much. Over that there are also other "Olympiads" conducted by private organizations like the Science Olympiad Foundation (SOF), Silver Zone Foundation, EduHeal Foundation, Eduranet Intellectual Olympiad Foundation (EIOF) etc. Sure, these do a good job in introducing competition at a young age leading to learning and also create interest in students for learning science, math and computer science. But the use of the term "Olympiad" here is very misleading. SOF even uses the real name of the International Mathematical Olympiad. Often when a student is in Higher Secondary, the first priority of teachers and parents is college and these Olympiads conducted by private organizations do not contribute to getting admission in a good college and, thus, they are of a view that all Olympiads are valueless. Also, these Olympiads were declared to be "compulsory" in some of the schools whereas no one is bothered or is even aware of the HBCSE Olympiads. The HBCSE Olympiads are tougher than SOF or any other Olympiads which private organizations (as mentioned above) are offering. All these Olympiads can be cracked with good marks only and only if the student develops an interest in the subjects.

The curriculum that these private olympiads follow is very different in nature than what is being taught in school. This creates such competition that students start coaching to crack these olympiads which is not in the right spirit.    

This creates a lack of awareness especially in India and India has been performing not up to the mark on the international scale.

Moreover, this lowers the sense of achievement in the "real" Olympiad. If an Indian gets gold in IMO (the real one) then that would be a very big deal and it will gain respect for the individual all over the world but in India people think the same about gold received in IMO conducted by SOF, but every 1st ranker from each school receives this medal.

Also, these Olympiads conducted by SOF or any other private organization cost much more as these private organizations focus on making money, as that's their BUSINESS.

We caution the students and teachers about numerous private examinations titled “Olympiads” which may charge high fees, are not officially recognized by Government of India and which do not lead to participation in the International Olympiads.

(This Caution Notice is published by Homi Bhabha Centre for Science Education of TIFR in their Olympiad Brochure for parents misunderstanding Olympiads conducted by private institutions/companies as real Olympiads. The private organization Olympiads are not officially recognized and will not lead students to International Olympiad Programmes sponsored by Govt. of India.)

Bibliography:

Mishra, Istasis. "Organizations Bringing Down The Prestige Of "Olympiads" In India." Change.org., 2019. Web. 8 Jan. 2019. <https://www.change.org/p/organizations-bringing-down-the-prestige-of-olympiads-in-india>.

Fernandes, Joeanna. "Olympiads: The New Status Symbol For Parents." TOI.2019. Web. 8 Jan. 2019. <http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/articleshow/56041451.cms?utm_source=contentofinterest&utm_medium=text&utm_campaign=cppst>

We have received a few queries in the past from the parents that why school is not promoting Sciences or why less students taking up courses in STEM or other Science related fields. Our response to these queries is given below: