If arrangements made for the mock examinations reflect the preparedness of the Board of Secondary Education Karachi (BSEK) to conduct the actual papers for the annual examination of 2011, then the candidates could be in for a rough ride.
Arrangements made by the Board of Secondary Education Karachi came under fire on Friday, with parents and students saying that if things continued in this manner, the candidates would be unable to secure decent marks in the actual exams.
The board conducted the mock exam for the English Part-I paper for the Secondary School Certificate of the Science and General Group. This is the very first time that the board had held mocks before the actual examinations and the paper was scheduled from 9:30am to 12:30pm.
A number of the venues lacked the required seating space to accommodate the candidates. Some of the parents told The News that when their children had reached the Pakistan Model School in Gulshan-i-Hadeed to take the mock exam, they were surprised to discover that the building was locked. The students were subsequently shifted to another building which was located nearby.
The alternative venue also had its fair share of problems. The ground-floor could not be used as it had been rented out to a family and students were made to take their exams on the first floor. In an effort to accommodate those students who were unable to find a place inside the building, the school’s management erected tents outside.
Things didn’t seem much at the KTS-11 school of Korangi. Despite the fact that this particular school had been blacklisted, it was chosen as an examination centre. Although the board had previously decided that only two candidates would be seated on a single bench at the centres, students could be seen sitting three abreast at this examination centre in Korangi. Since there was a massive lack of seating space, some of the students were forced to give their papers in the corridors of the school.
There were also reports of examinations getting underway after the scheduled start time as students giving their papers at the Madressa Talim-ul-Islam in Baldia town claimed that the exam did not begun until 10:00am.
The students said that although the management of the school had requested the BSEK to provide extra furniture to seat the candidates, no action had been taken in this regard. As a result, the Madressa Talim-ul-Islam was forced to hire additional benches from a decoration service.
Over at the PAF Government Girls Higher Secondary School on Drig Road, female candidates were forced to endure the humiliation of having to give their exams directly in front of the washrooms of the school.
The school, which had a capacity of 700 at the most, was forced to house over 1600 female candidates. Apart from the fact that there was no electricity or water at this centre, the candidates were also forced to sit on broken benches and chairs. The administration of this school was also forced to hire extra furniture to entertain the students and the start of the exam was delayed by at least half-an-hour due to the lack of seating space.
Earlier this week, a high-level committee constituted by the Governor of Sindh, had announced five grace marks for those students who were ready to participate in the mock exams and urged the candidates to take advantage of the opportunity and ensure their attendance.
The committee also decided that only one student would be seated on a single bench at the larger examination centres and directed the concerned departments to supply the necessary furniture. However, these instructions appeared to have been overlooked.
Invigilators and superintendents also had great difficulty in monitoring the mock exam. Secretary BSEK Hoor Mazhar said that 122,562 candidates had appeared at 166 examination centres. A high-level committee visited different examination centres, she also stated.
Board’s employees also visited the centres and the chairman BSEK has called for a meeting of all members, who visited the examination centres, on Sunday, March 27. They would present their reports to the chairman and also highlight issues and problems pointed out at the examination centres, she further said. Mazhar said that the BSEK also established a complainant cell at the Board Office. Adding that the complaints received and recommendations which would discussed during the meeting on March 27. The Board would like to address these matters before holding the annual examinations, she added.
Source: The News