The first day of university entrance examinations ran smoothly yesterday, although more than 1,400 candidates were absent and many were suffering from health problems, according to the Ministry of Education.
There were 23 cases of candidates with health problems ranging from dizziness, fever, headaches, sore legs, fainting and vomiting, but they continued their exam after receiving first aid.
In two cases, the candidates were too unwell to continue the exam.
A total of 101,410 candidates took the exam, with seven accused of misconduct.
There were five cases where mobile phones were used, one seat change, and one candidate who copied an answer.
There was also one case of an education official who was suspended, and staff assigned someone else to be the invigilator instead.
Vice-president of the Anti-Corruption Unit Kheang Seng said there were 4,587 observers deployed across 25 provinces and cities, with three to five observers per room.
Education Minister Hang Chuon Naron said the number of students and centres had risen over the past year and exam preparation standards improved.
“The exam process is getting better and better,” he said. “If we look at the exam standards, we prepared strictly like last year, but I believe the students will get a better result than last year.”
However, the minister expressed concern over the weather and said as there was likely to be heavy rains in the evening, there would be a 30-minute waiver for late students today.
UYFC president Hun Many said that for this exam UYFC collaborated with provincial and city departments of education to create extra training courses for students entering the exam.
Grade 12 student Mam Vanne said the situation in the exam centres was strict, but necessary.
“It is a good idea to make the exam strict to prevent bribes and corruption during the exam,” he said. “It is fair for those who study hard to pass the exam, and those who do not to fail.”
Prime Minister Hun Sen wished the students well in their exams and encouraged teachers, officials of the anti-corruption unit, and local authorities to work together to make the exams run smoothly and transparently.
“All students please pay attention to the exam, do not be afraid, but try to obey the discipline and regulations properly because students who have studied hard will pass the exam,” he said.
The national exam of Grade-12 students takes place over two days, ending today.