Edu dept to suspend computerised marking
Lahore, Jan 15: The Punjab Education Department's Examination Commission is hell-bent to put the computerised marking system of primary and middle standards exams on the back burner, as the commission has still not awarded the contract for this job despite the date-sheet has been announced, learnt on Wednesday.
Well-placed sources in the Punjab Examination Commission (PEC) of Education Department said that Punjab Government Printing Press Department was assigned the task of awarding contract for computerised marking of answer sheets, but this UNICEF-supported project is being delayed.
The sources said some elements in the examination commission and the education department, with a view to manipulate results and benefit their favourite students, are planning to go back to the manual system of marking as in this system individuals have more chances to influence the result. They said the date-sheet had been announced according to which the primary exams will be held from February 3 to 7, while the middle standard exams will be conducted during February 9 to 14 in Punjab, and the result is expected to be announced on April 1.
This year, the contract for scanning and computerised marking of answer sheets has not been awarded to anyone yet, they added. "The successful bidder will have to purchase high-speed scanners, arrange huge storage space for computer networking besides hiring at least 300 data entry operators," they added.
They further said, "At least two months are required for computerised marking of up to 13 million answer sheets. They observed that last year the firm which was assigned the task of marking the papers, was given over two-month period for marking 12.6 million answer sheets. If the same contract is awarded to the company it will have to accomplish its job of marking 13 million papers only in 25 days, which is almost impossible, they added.
It is worth mentioning that last year the education department in collaboration with the UNICEF had carried out computerised marking of the answer sheets so that detailed analysis could be made on the attempted responses of the students to improve the curriculum. By adopting this method one could go back and refer to the original answer sheets since the answer sheets were also made available in scanned form, they added.
When we talked to Examination Commission Manager Operation, Iqbal Awan, he said that CEO Aslam Kamboh had assigned the Printing Press Department the task of hiring a firm in this regard.
Sheikh Muhammad Ilyas, Controller Printing Press Department, while responding, observed that they would award the contract of computerised marking to some company within stipulated period. Only 25 days are sufficient to complete this job, he said. The NationYour Comments
Controller examinations rebuts statement of ex-chairman FBISE
Islamabad: The Federal Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education (FBISE), Islamabad, on Tuesday confirmed that there was no rule in "General Rules For Examination of FBISE" that 10 percent papers marked or assessed by a sub-examiner will be re-marked or reassessed by the head-examiner, after declaration of result, as stated by the ex-FBISE chairman Commodore (retd) Sharif Shamshad in his reply to the Islamabad High Court (IHC) in the Farah Dogar case.
Controller of Examinations, Muzaffar-ul-Hassan, confirmed that rule 7.6L(4) under which 10% copies marked by sub-examiners were re-examined/ reassessed by head-examiner was "applicable before the announcement of result".
Controller of the examinations Muzaffar said, "This rule [7.6L(4)] is not applicable after the announcement of result and it explains the process and procedure of marking of the papers during normal assessment of answer sheets process, which is done before the announcement of result. Yes, this rule has nothing to do with anything after the announcement of result," Muzaffar said in categorical terms.
Muzaffar, however, was of the view that he had just explained a rule and will not speak on the issue any more as, he said, the matter was under hearing in the IHC. Muzaffar also admitted that he didn't remember any single case of reassessment, after announcement of result, during his whole career.
Ex-chairman Shamshad has stated in his reply to the IHC that 9 more marks in English, 5 more marks in Urdu and 6 more marks in Physics were awarded to Farah Hameed Dogar after re-examination/reassessment of her papers by head-examiners along with 200 other students. One additional mark in Biology was awarded due to wrong total, which takes her marks from 640 to 641.
However, authoritative sources in the FBISE give the correct picture of the scandal through documentary evidence that the marks of 200 candidates other than Farah Dogar were increased after re-checking (re-counting of grand total) while during this process only 1 mark of Farah in Biology paper was increased.
"It was after this that ex-chairman Shamshad ordered reassessment of Farah's papers, which was impossible after the declaration of result and her marks were increased from 641 to 661 (i.e. she moved from grade-C to grade-B). Yes, it was done only in Farah's case as per the whole record available with us," a top official confirmed. The IHC will hear the Farah's case on Jan 15 now. The News
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