Human Resource Development Minister Prakash Javadekar on Thursday confirmed reports that the government plans to reinstate the Class 10 board exams for students under the Central Board of Secondary Education. There have been murmurs of such a move for several months now, but Javadekar’s statement is the first concrete one from the Centre.

All students other than those under the CBSE board appear for board exams, Javadekar said, “but for CBSE, it is an option, so why?” Any change in plans will, however, be made starting the next academic year, he said, according to PTI.

In September, CBSE Chairperson Rajesh Chaturvedi had told the Hindustan Times that public opinion was in favour of bringing back the CBSE exam, and so they were giving it a serious thought. The CBSE had made Class 10 board exams optional for students and instead introduced the Continuous and Comprehensive Evaluation system under the 2009 Right to Education Act. The demand to reintroduce the board examination came up in 2014 when Smriti Irani, who was the HRD minister at that time, had sought students’ opinion on the new CCE system.