PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten — Eleven students might get better results for their Foundation Based Education (FBE) exit exam which over 600 students took this month. The Division of Examinations in a letter to all school boards and school managers informed them that they discovered a few discrepancies with the scoring machine which “did not read lightly printed answers; therefore the results of some students may have been negatively affected”.
The letter was send by Division Head Yvette Halley and continued informing the officials “this letter serves to inform you that some scored may change. Do rest assured that the scores can only increase, after a full investigation and quality has been completed, we will issue new students’ slips”. This means that the eleven students which failed the exams might have a second chance if the right answers are printed by the machine used to calculate the results.
The Minister of Education Rita Bourne-Gumbs was apprised about the situation on Monday morning and instructed the Education department to assure that the information was not leaked to the press however late on Monday afternoon when the letter was sent out to all the stakeholders, 721 news was able to obtain a copy of the letter send out.
The FBE exam takes place in four days during the month of May; students are tested in General Knowledge, Math, English and Dutch. Contrary to the previous years, students will not have to sit separate entrance exams for the various secondary schools as the FBE exit exam is a comprehensive one which reflects the FBE curriculum.
The scores achieved in the exam as well as the Educational report, which includes grades of the last two years will determine which type of secondary school the students will be qualified to attend. The criteria and norms for the exit exam for entrance into the different types of high schools were set by a committee which consisted of representatives of the School boards and was facilitated by the Ministry of Education.