Phurpa Lhamo 

The Class XII students, who appeared the board examinations during a lockdown and increasing Covid-19 cases in 2021, recorded the worst performance in the past 16 years.

The overall pass percentage for Class XII dropped to 82 percent for the 2021 academic year from 90.63 percent in 2020. This is an 8.63 percent decrease in the pass percentage.

The education ministry and the Bhutan Council for School Examinations and Assessment (BCSEA) announced the results yesterday.

A BCSEA official said that the decrease in the pass percentage could be attributed to the new assessment criteria, which requires students to score 40 percent both in continuous assessment (CA) and in the main examination or the theory.

The new assessment criterion was introduced last year.

The official added that the other reason could be due to the competency-based curriculum and the competency-based assessment. “This year we have more competency-based questions.”

The constant change in exam dates due to the changing pandemic situation was also attributed as one of the possible reasons.

Of the 13,700 students who appeared for the examination 11,234 students passed.


In the Science stream, scoring 91.75 percent, Abin Chapagai from Damphu Central School topped the exam. Khamsum Wangchuk from The Royal Academy with 91.50 percent and Jigme Tobden Choda from Karma Academy with 90.75 percent came in second and third respectively.

Of the total, 93.09 percent of Science students passed their exams.

With 88.50 percent, Choni Yoezer Dorji from Karma Academy topped the exam for the Commerce stream. Pema Youden from Karma Academy and Pema Yangchen from Mongar Higher Secondary School were second and third.

Of the 5,006 Commerce students, who appeared for the exams, 75.13 percent passed.

Students in the Arts stream performed better than the Commerce students with 83.36 of students passing their exams.

Chimi Selden from Karma Academy topped the Art stream exam with 87.75 percent. In second were three students—Tshoki Lhamo, Zhenden Choden, and Karma Selden. They scored 87.25 percent each. In the third position of the Art stream was Lhaki Dem with 87 percent from Gongzim Ugyen Dorji Central School.

A total of 242 students appeared for the Language and Culture Studies Certificate (LCSC) examination.

Scoring 85.5 percent, Jamtsho from Taktse Central School topped the exam. Leki Khando and Kinzang Choden from Taktse CS and Desi High School were second and third respectively.

Pass category

This year, most students were left confused with their results. While some had scored a high overall percentage, they had been not awarded the pass certificate.

This is because the students have to score 40 percent each in CA and theory to pass the subject. Like in past years, the students have to pass English, Dzongkha and two other subjects to receive the pass certificate fulfilling the above criterion for the four subjects.

In the new criterion, the overall 100 percent is divided between CA and theory in different proportions.

In English, Dzongkha, Math, Business Math, and Dzongkha Rizhung, 20 percent weightage is given to CA and 80 percent to theory. For students to pass these subjects, they will need to score eight in CA and 32 in theory.

For Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Economics, Accountancy, Geography, History, and Environmental Science, CA has 30 percent weightage and theory 70 percent. To pass these subjects, students need to score 12 in CA and 28 in theory.

For Commerce and Media Studies, the weightage is 40 percent for CA and 60 percent for theory. To pass the subjects, students need to score 16 in CA and 24 in theory.

For Agriculture for Food Security, CA and theory have 50 percent weightage each. To pass the subject, students will need to acquire 20.

For Computer Science and Hindi, students require to score an overall 40 percent.