At the start of the two-day, grade nine exam yesterday, lower secondary schools recorded an unprecedented turnout, with nearly 100 per cent of enrolled students in attendance.
Approximately 140,000 students – roughly the same number as are enrolled in grade nine this year – sat the first part of their exam, according to Ministry of Education spokesman Ros Salin.
Last year, nearly 10 per cent of the grade nine candidates skipped the tests, making them ineligible to move on to higher grades or complete their compulsory nine-year education.
“This is the first year the grade nine exam is not being held at the national level; it’s organised internally and written by the students’ teachers, and takes place in the students’ classroom,” said Chin Chanveasna, head of the NGO Education Partnership.
In previous years, students had to pay for transportation to and accommodations nearby the provincial testing centres.