x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

Students handed answers during Grade 12 maths exam in Ajman

Answer sheets were mistakenly distributed instead of questions papers for the Grade 12 second term maths examination at Ajman government schools on Wednesday.

AJMAN // It's what every student dreams of. You sit down to take your maths exam, but instead of questions on equations and times tables – you're presented with the answers.

That's what happened to Grade 12 students in government schools in Ajman when answer sheets were distributed instead of questions papers for the second term mathematics exams on Wednesday.

"I got a call in the morning from one of the schools complaining that they had received answer sheets not question papers," said Eissa Hamad, director of the examinations department at Ajman Education Zone.

"It took me some time to call and confirm with other schools that the problem was general."

The error caused exams to be delayed by more than two hours as officials from the Ajman Eucation Zone printed a new set of exams and distributed them to schools.

Mr Hamad said some schools had already distributed the answer sheets while others noticed the problem before distributing them to students. He asked school directors to wait for a solution as he ordered another set of papers.

"The exams began at 10:30am instead of 8am when they were supposed to start."

Mr Hamad said the error was caused when a non-Arabic speaker mixed up the answers and the questions sheets after printing.

The exam papers are always printed three weeks before the exams and the names of each subject and classes inserted into each batch.

A school director, who asked not to be named, said as soon as she noticed a problem, she asked the school bus driver to return students to their homes for extra study time. They returned to school at 10am for the revised 10:30am exam.

"Our students didn't know what happened. We immediately noticed the answer sheets and confirmed with the Education Zone that there was an error," she said.

Grade 11 students in the emirate were sitting their English examinations the same day, but had no problem with their papers.

ykakande@thenational.ae