Exam SOP Messages: Revised SOP for conducting exams under COVID-19
NEW DELHI: The government has issued a revised SOP for Conducting Investigations in the COVID-19 Pandemic, removing the requirement that symptomatic candidates who insist on taking an exam can do so in isolation.

According to the revised Ministry of Health document, a symptomatic candidate should be referred to the nearest health center at regular intervals and given the option to conduct the exam in another way, or the university or educational institution should arrange the exam at a later date that the student for is declared physically fit.

“However, if a student is found to be symptomatic, their permission or denial in such cases will be given in accordance with the policy already established by the Examination Leadership Authorities on the subject,” states the revised Standard Operating Instructions (SOP).

The ministry issued guidelines on September 2 that staff and examinees from security zones are not physically present in exam centers, and there will be alternative regulations for these students.

These students will be given the option to take the exam by other means, or universities and educational institutions will have to take the exam for them at a later date.

According to the SOP, universities, educational institutions, examination authorities or examination centers are required to provide personnel with suitable arrangements for personal protective equipment such as face coverings or masks and other logistical measures such as hand sanitizer, soap, sodium hypochlorite solution, etc., and students as required.

“Examination officials and examinees can also submit a self-declaration about their state of health at the time they enter the examination center. Such a self-declaration form can be distributed at the time the tickets are issued,” says the guidelines.

If an examination officer or examinee does not meet the self-explanatory criteria, he may not be admitted, emphasized the SOP.

According to the SOP, only asymptomatic employees and students are allowed to enter the examination room. Adding a face covering or mask is mandatory.

The face covering or mask must always be worn in the examination center, underlined.

The authorities concerned should plan the examination schedule in stages to avoid overcrowding the examination centers every day, according to the SOP.

Examination centers in security zones must not work, it said.

For pen-and-paper-based tests, the SOP states that supervisors must disinfect their hands before distributing questionnaires or answer sheets, and that examinees also disinfect their hands before receiving or returning these materials.

Collecting and packing the answer sheets at each stage includes hand disinfection. Answer sheets are preferably opened 72 hours after collecting the papers, following recommended guidelines.

“The use of spit / saliva to count and distribute leaves is not permitted,” says the SOP.

The investigation center should have a designated isolation room in which people who are considered symptomatic at the time of screening or during the investigation can be isolated until medical advice can be obtained.

A clear guideline, according to which symptomatic candidates may or may not allow tests, is set in advance by the test management authorities, according to the SOP.


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