Matric exams mismanagement

After a hiatus of two years due to Covid-19, matric exams in Sindh started a few days ago, and students and their guardians were optimistic that this time around they would not suffer because of official mismanagement in the conduct of exams. There are no reports from other parts of the province, but for students from Karachi, the first day of the exam turned out to be an endurance test. Unfortunately, it had occurred in the past too, but officials do not seem to have learnt any lessons.

A considerable number of students did not receive admit cards; and those who did receive this important exam document found it carrying one error to the other. When examinees and their guardians went to the exam board office, there was no one to guide them to the relevant departments. Left helpless, they had to go round and round the rambling building. In the absence of admit card, many pupils could not appear in the exam. While the provincial minister of education has ordered rescheduling of the paper for those who missed the exam, it must have left students coming prepared for exams extremely demoralised.

Other perennial problems related to exams persisted too. The computer studies paper of Class 9 and Class 10 had reportedly been leaked on social media around two hours before the exams got underway. There were also reports of examinees writing answers without electric fans due to power cuts when the heat was at its peak. Students also complained about the non-availability of drinking water at many exam centres. Like others, students are also suffering due to prolonged power outages. Cheating was also witnessed at many exam centres. All these reported mismanagement by exam board officials have made a mockery of the exams. So far there are no reports about an inquiry into the unsatisfactory conduct of the exams. Letting things as they are means more of the same in future.

Published in The Express Tribune, May 20th, 2022.

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