The efforts of Pakistani students continue against the government’s decision to postpone the O/A levels Cambridge exams till October/November exam series. The hashtag #CancelAllExams trended on Twitter on Friday,
Federal Minister for Education and Professional Training Shafqat Mehmood had announced the government’s decision to allow the O/A Levels Cambridge exams to proceed as planned; however, due to a difficulty in following the SOPs, the exam series was cancelled for all classes apart from A2 students. The cancelled series of exams were then scheduled to be held in October/November.
“Permission to hold exams was conditional on strict SOP observance. As more reports have come in, It is obvious that outside the exam centres, the compliance is poor,” the minister had tweeted.
The minister had said only A-2 examinations were being held across the country, but several people voiced their demands to be awarded school-assessed grades. “If examinations do not take place, then no one will study — and that is why the (O/A- level) exams — that have been postponed — will be conducted in October and November,” he said.
On the other hand, he confirmed that the examination for class 9 and 11 would go as planned. Rumours on social media websites had been claiming that the board exams had been cancelled, the minister said that “there is no truth” to these rumours.
Earlier, there were speculations that due to the rising coronavirus cases across the country, authorities were considering the possibility to promote grade 9 and 11 students without examinations.
Students have been demanding for exams to be replaced with School Assessed Grades (SAGs) that would allow students to pass their O/A levels without having to sit through exams with their schools providing an academic performance review and transcript to Cambridge to provide the final grade.
The call for SAGs has been seconded by major private educational institutes and educational organizations.
Earlier, the Pakistan Education Council seconded the students demand and wrote a letter to the education minister demanding that the decision be reviewed in consultation with educationalists and school management as holding the exam series in October/November is highly impractical and could severely impact students’ academic performance and career.