Education board discrepancies

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The recent revelations of financial and administrative discrepancies, coupled with exam tampering, at the Board of Intermediate Education, Karachi (BIEK) have sparked deep concerns about the integrity of the educational system in Sindh province. The findings, uncovered by an inquiry committee appointed by Sindh caretaker Chief Minister Maqbool Baqar, paint a disturbing picture of systemic flaws within the institution.

The report identified tampering in the award lists of the pre-medical Science Groups HSC Annual Examination 2022, with marks manipulated and inflated through a questionable process. The examination of answer scripts for the HSC Annual Examination 2023 for the pre-medical group revealed a lack of security features, such as missing signatures and QR codes. This raises serious concerns about the authenticity of the results, suggesting potential replacements of answer scripts for specific candidates. Moreover, financial irregularities within the BIEK have also come to light, exposing a failure to adhere to administrative guidelines and financial rules.

The imperative to uphold meritocracy and maintain educational standards at BIEK necessitates a comprehensive overhaul of its examination processes, governance structures and financial management practices. Rigorous reforms should include the introduction of advanced security measures in examination processes, such as unique identifiers and QR codes, to prevent tampering and unauthorised replacements. A digitalised accounting system and strict adherence to financial rules will minimise data errors and enhance transparency. Regular external audits of financial and administrative practices, coupled with periodic reviews of examination processes, are vital to maintaining the integrity of academic assessments.

These strategies will not only help rebuild public trust but also establish a resilient educational system that prioritises meritocracy. The focus should be on creating a transparent and accountable educational system.

Editorial published by Express Tribune on 04-02-2024

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