Action Finally Taken Against Board Employees for Serious Errors in Matric Exams

Following the investigation into alleged errors in the results of SSC-II examinations, Sindh’s caretaker Chief Minister (retd) Justice Maqbool Baqar has finally taken decisive action.

In response to the inquiry committee’s report, which highlighted glaring mistakes in the results, the Chief Minister directed the Anti-Corruption Establishment to launch a thorough investigation into the entire examination team of the Board of Secondary Education Karachi (BSEK).

The report, submitted to the CM Sindh by a three-member inquiry committee, squarely placed responsibility on the examination and IT teams of BSEK for the errors. It recommended not only a probe by the Anti-Corruption Establishment but also departmental action against all officers deemed responsible for negligence.

The committee’s findings underscored a lack of seriousness, professionalism, and efficiency among board employees. It criticized the chairman for failing to implement necessary reforms and failing to adequately train teachers involved in assessing answer sheets.

Appointed by the CM, the inquiry committee, chaired by Secretary School Education Dr. Shereen Mustafa, along with Additional Secretary Universities and Boards Afshan Rubab and Zuzain Katbar Section Officer of U&B department, diligently investigated the allegations of result manipulation in the 2023 SSC Part-II annual examination by the BSEK.

Upon submission of the committee’s findings and recommendations on February 21, the CM wasted no time in approving them for immediate implementation by the board chairman.

Throughout the proceedings, the committee noted a lack of seriousness among the summoned employees and discrepancies in the result announcement and publication processes. Despite requests, the actual result CD/USB for comparison was not provided. The report also highlighted the conflict of interest regarding Khalid Ehsan, deputy controller, who was implicated in the result process and appointed to the internal inquiry committee.

The committee observed that the IT wing, crucial for all activities, had been neglected by the board administration, leading to manipulation and mismanagement. It noted the introduction of new result software in 2023 by M/s Basecamp IT Solution, which failed to calculate total marks accurately and omitted grade grace due to mismatching software.

Moreover, the committee found that the introduction of the Optical Mark Recognition (OMR) system was marred by a lack of training for teachers involved in assessing answer sheets, resulting in numerous errors.

Both the system provider consulting firm and the Board administration were held accountable for inadequate training before implementing new systems, with the administration failing to effectively address identified issues. Record maintenance for old and new students/schemes was found lacking, without user-friendly solutions provided.

The examination team, including the controller and IT team, bore responsibility for significant errors, with recommendations for further investigation by agencies like the Anti-corruption establishment. Departmental action was advised against all negligent officers. Lack of cooperation from officers, including the chairman, hindered the committee’s work.

The committee highlighted weaknesses in the IT cell, software consulting firm, and contract administration, along with unprofessional behavior among examination branch staff. The failure of the chairman to introduce reforms exacerbated the board’s performance issues. The caretaker CM approved the committee’s recommendations based on the factual findings in the report, signaling a commitment to addressing the systemic failures identified.

Published by
ProPK Staff