After Grade X

On April 1, 2019,

The last day of your child’s 10th board exams; it seems like an eternity since your mind has been at peace, isn’t it? Well, it is understandable that the stress a parent goes through is indeed equivalent to the amount of stress your child feels. Class 10th is the first important exam that your child writes and is an important phase in your child and your life. However, this is just the beginning as your child will need to pass through many such milestones with shining records – on their road to a successful career.

The first milestone in this regard is their Class 11 and Class 12. Class 11 is the level in your child’s education life where they are required to choose a stream – Commerce, Science or Arts – which makes this class another critical phase in their life. This is followed by the Class 12th board exams, which is the second milestone in the child’s life. Moreover, since the chosen field and the results obtained in these classes determine the college/ university your child enters, it is essential that the decisions made here are taken keeping all the factors in mind. One of these factors is the education board from which your child pursues their Class 11 and 12.

Amongst the many national, international and state boards prevalent in India, the few key ones are CBSE, ICSE and IB board. These are popular boards of education which have been established across the country. So, let us take discuss all these boards in detail to help you make the ideal choice for your child and secure appropriate school admission after Grade 10.


CBSE – Central Board of Secondary Education

The oldest and the most recognised board in the country, CBSE or the Central Board of Secondary Education is a school education board that affiliates most of the schools approved by the Central Government of India. For Class 11 and 12 students, the board offers streams that include arts, non-medical, medical and commerce. Here, the students also get an opportunity to choose the subjects they wish to study in Class 11 and 12. For example, students can choose whether to opt for Commerce with Math or without Math, the ones opting for science can choose between Math, Biology or Computer Science along with Physics and Chemistry. The board also comes with an advantage of CBSE graduates being accepted by all colleges/ universities as the 12th board score is the general selection criteria for undergraduate admissions across fields.

However, the fact that CBSE is a board that runs mainly on theoretical learning cannot be overlooked. Also, the board focuses mainly on academics while students who are interested in other career choices like arts or sports do not get much exposure if pursuing this board.

ISC – Indian School Certificate Examinations

The CISCE (Council for the Indian School Certificate Examinations) is another privately held national-level school education board in India that conducts the Indian Certificate of Secondary Education (ISCE) for Class 10 and Indian School Certificate Examinations for Class 12. As per the board’s regulations, candidates are required to enter and sit for subjects that include English (compulsory) along with three, four or five elective subjects and must be evaluated internally by the School along with a Pass Grade in Socially Useful Productive Work and Community Service, which is mandatory.

One of the disadvantages of this board is that it does not allow students who have not studied in ICSE board to appear for the exams apart from the fact that the board is usually considered more stringent than the other boards.

Cambridge A Levels

The Cambridge Advanced Level, or commonly known as the A Level programme is a pre-university programme formulated and conducted by the globally renowned Cambridge Assessment International Education (CAIE), United Kingdom. The syllabus aims to adequately prepare students for the demands of university education. It is typically a two year course, offering students the choice of 55 unique subjects for them to choose from.

IB – International Baccalaureate

The IB board in India has been growing and expanding at a steady pace in various tier 1 and tier 2 cities, owing to its new-age education pedagogy that caters to the educational needs of the modern-age students. The International Baccalaureate curriculum is regulated by the IBO (International Baccalaureate Organisation) and has introduced new teaching-learning methodologies that are tech-driven and holistic. A research-based curriculum and experiential learning steer the IB educational framework.

The IB programme is divided into four categories:

IB Primary Years Programme (PYP): This programme is designed for children aged 3-12 years and emphasises the holistic development of the child.

IB Middle Years Programme (MYP): Created for children aged 11-16 years, it is a challenging framework that nurtures students to make connections between their studies and the real world.

IB Diploma Programme (IBDP): IBDP is specifically designed for children aged 16-19 years to cater to their career needs. It aims to groom students with theoretical and practical knowledge along with skill-development.

IB Career-related Programme: This programme focuses on developing students who are career-ready and are desirous of pursuing the career of their choice. The aim is to prepare students for higher education and train them for future employment or training.

The board offers many advantages that include globally recognised international curriculum, tech-driven methodologies, equal focus on academics, sports, and extracurricular activities, CAS project – Creativity, Action and Service, among others. This gives an advantage to graduates of IB schools in India. Interested students/parents can attend a session conducted by Ms. Mona Seervai, conducted at Mount Litera School International, Mumbai on April 2nd. This event aims at clearing doubts and misunderstandings of prospective candidates. Register here.

The details given above briefly summarise the features, benefits, and drawbacks of the popular boards in the country. Thus, children along with their parents must make a wise and well-informed decision about the education board they wish to pursue after Grade 10. Eventually while making a final decision, it is impossible to highlight any particular board as the best. Parents must evaluate aspects such as subjects of interests & personality, future education plans, and career goals at this stage. After all, the choice of board and subjects chosen will determine your readiness in the 21st century