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Probe committee for not cancelling SSC exams despite question leak

  • Published at 04:20 pm March 12th, 2018
  • Last updated at 06:14 pm March 13th, 2018
Probe committee for not cancelling SSC exams despite question leak
Despite the government probe committee finding that the multiple choice questions (MCQs) of a number of Secondary School Certificate (SSC) examinations had been leaked, the committee did not recommend the cancellation of any of the exams, considering the examinees’ interests. Question leaks during public examinations have become an epidemic over the last couple of years, continuing to be rampant in the face of various preventive measures by the Ministry of Education including the expulsion of examinees and the establishment of bounties for the capture of question leakers. The SSC and equivalent exams in 2018 saw a record number of question leaks, with parts of the question papers being compromised on almost every exam day. On February 15, the High Court described this epidemic as “more serious issue than drug addiction” and formed two separate committees – one judicial and the other administrative – in order to find and apprehend question leakers and put an end to the leaks. The administrative probe committee, led by Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (Buet) teacher Prof Dr M Kaykobad, said it had found that several leaked multiple choice questions of different subjects which matched the official question sets given to the examinees for the exams. However, the committee said that they would not recommend cancelling any exam, but rather work to find a strategy to prevent question leaks in the future. “The committee has sat twice to discuss the issue and is working to submit its final report including a set of recommendations to prevent further question paper leaks. However, we have no plan to cancel any exam,” Prof Kaykobad told Dhaka Tribune. Seeking anonymity, another member of the probe committee said that the committee had found that the question paper leaks were authentic, but the Ministry of Education was unwilling to admit it. He said: “The Education Ministry initially denied the existence of leaked SSC question papers this year, but we found that the MCQ sections of several subjects were leaked before the exam. However, we are now stressing on preventive measure for the crisis instead of cancelling the exams.”
Also Read - SSC question paper leaks: Investigators likely to recommend fresh exams
He further said that they would not take any decisions that would leave a negative impact on examinees and their guardians. “It is not easy to cancel and retake an exam at such a level. Besides, it will hamper the lives of the students and increase the costs of their guardians. Therefore, we are emphasizing on a preventive strategy,” the probe committee member told the Dhaka Tribune. The SSC Examinations this year started from the first week of February and saw more question paper leaks than any other year. The MCQ sections of Bangla, English, mathematics, higher mathematics, ICT, physics, chemistry, biology, finance and banking, Bangladesh and global studies, and Islam and moral education were found available on different social media platforms such as Facebook and Whatsapp. In the face of overwhelming nationwide criticism for failing to stop question leaks, the Ministry of Education has resorted to overhauling the exam system. When contacted, committee member Prof Sohel Rahman stated that the problem became more severe as the authorities did not handle the crisis properly in the beginning. He also said: “The commercialization of education is one of the biggest reasons behind massive question leaks in recent years, with institutes focusing more on the results of the students than what they actually learn. “To show that their coaching centre has a higher success rate, sometimes teachers and centres themselves become involved in question leaks instead of proper teaching,” he added. Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid was not available for a comment on the matter despite several attempts to reach his mobile phone.
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