THE future of 23 Grade Eight students at a primary school in Madang province is uncertain after their mathematics examination answer sheets were stolen.
Yoro Primary School in the Bogia district had all its final Grade Eight national examination answer sheets stolen from the school office where they were kept.
A senior provincial
education officer told The National that the students sat for their final examinations early this month as scheduled and the numeracy answer sheets for the 23 students were kept in the school office by the headmaster and the external invigilator.
The officer said somebody must have entered the office and stolen the papers, which was not discovered until the next morning.
The officer said there was no sign of a break-in, and school officials suspect that someone might have used a spare key to enter the office to steal the papers.
He said it was the first such incident in the province and the provincial authorities had referred the matter to police.
With the numeracy papers stolen, it is not known how the students will be assessed for placements into secondary schools to continue into Grade Nine as all students are selected according to their final examination results.
“All examination answer sheets should be in the care of the external invigilator and brought to the provincial office.
“However, the teacher entrusted by the division has failed in his or her duties,” the officer said.
Provincial education adviser Moses Siriki said the authorities would meet this week to discuss how to address the issue.
Police are yet to go to the school to investigate although a hire car was believed to have been made available to them.