With a frontal attack on the Ministry of Education, the parents and teachers are coming back, against the background of the commotion caused by the leaking of the subjects of the examination essay of the Young Greeks for the 3rd Lyceum, who attribute to Prodromos Prodromos a tragic management of the situation, while stressing that it bears sole responsibility for what happened after the leak.
OELMEK, organized parents and students had joined forces, once again, after what unfolded during the premiere of the four-month exams and after continuous meetings they had since Monday morning, they are coming back and shooting indiscriminately against the Ministry of Education.< /p>
As stated in a joint announcement by the parents and teachers, “the reprehensible leak of subjects of the examination essay of the New Greeks of the 3rd Lyceum, for which a thorough investigation and punishment of all those involved is required, highlighted some of the vulnerabilities that we had pointed out here and years in the four-month examination procedures. This is also why we strongly disagreed with the proposal submitted by the Minister of Education two years ago, which provided for the abolition of the Pan-Cypriot Examinations and the use of these perforated procedures for the purposes of access to Universities. It should certainly be noted that the leak is related to the field of private education, for which there was an admission by the Minister of Education, before the Parliament, that there is no control”.
Continuing, a reference is made to their actions, as soon as they were informed about the leaks that existed, stressing that “yesterday, as soon as we were informed about the circulation of the disputed messages with the subjects, we immediately contacted the Minister of Education, before the start of the exams of the 3rd grade High School, noting that this is a very serious issue, which would require the cancellation of yesterday's exams in the New Greek course. Despite this, the exams started with the exam paper whose topics had been leaked and were then interrupted by the Ministry's instructions.
The disturbance caused to the final students was enormous, it is noted in the announcement, while firing the first shots against the Ministry of Education, they argue that “the management of the situation by the Ministry of Education is tragic. Ignoring the psychology of the students, who had already spent a lot of time solving the paper, he decided to continue the process with the paper of the second series, except for the students of the facilities, who, based on the Ministry's instructions, continued the examination with the first written. In some cases the Ministry's instructions arrived late and/or not at all, while elsewhere many students were out of class”.
In a telephone communication between OELMEK and the Minister of Education, before the continuation of the process with the written second series, the professors report, “we pointed out to him the need to cancel yesterday's exam and set a new date for the examination of the New Greek 3rd Lyceum, being aware of the situation that had been created and understanding the psychology of the students. We met the denial of the Minister of Education to our desperate appeals, with unacceptable style and argumentation”.
Professors and students, continuing with their fiery speech, denounce that “the tragic management of the situation by the Minister of Education, after the issues were leaked, with the victims of the students of the 3rd Lyceum, in the most critical phase of their school life. The Minister of Education has sole responsibility for what happened after the leak. All the students of the 3rd Lyceum, who had been preparing for months and throughout the holidays for these exams, were victimized. We call on him to assume the responsibilities that burden him”.
Afterwards, parents and teachers make it clear that “we are not going to accept the victimization of any student for what happened yesterday. We will not tolerate students paying for the mistakes of others. For this reason, decisions should be made today for the New Greek 3rd Lyceum course, in order to give the opportunity to sit the exam for the students who did not sit yesterday, but also for those who wish to repeat the written exam. We emphasize that the decisions should be announced today, in order to restore the calm to the students, which is necessary for the continuation”.
However, due to the specific situation, all three educational institutions report, “as far as the measure of the four-month examinations is concerned, which has accumulated so many problems and is proven to no longer serve any educational purpose, there is no longer even a trace of trust, while the reliability of the procedures has collapse”.
Finally, in their joint announcement, teachers, parents and students remind us that for a long time, they have been demanding with various actions that the exams every four months be abolished. “The culmination of this effort was last year's joint large mobilization which we held outside the presidential office expressing our opposition to this specific institution. In fact, they should have been abolished already. We call on both the President of the Republic and the House of Representatives to intervene immediately and find solutions to both the current issues and the four-month exams in general”.
The Ministry of Education has started an investigation
It is recalled that the Ministry of Education has already started all the actions, in order to correct the distortions, but also to assign responsibilities for this specific issue, as quite a lot of damage has been caused, especially to the prestige of the institution. However, the assistance of the Legal Service has already been requested, in order to establish whether there is any criminal offense behind this specific action.
Speaking to Ant1, the Minister of Education indicated that it was a highly irresponsible action of a teacher, who had access to the subjects, while clarifying again that it was a private school. “This particular teacher thought it was good to send a description of the subjects to others, which is unacceptable and incomprehensible. It was disseminated and many children were informed before sitting the exams. The matter is being investigated. However, this person was not a member of the school's Committee, which is responsible for the papers, she managed to gain access from the process of printing the papers. The school must also do its own research”.
Mr. Prodromou, referring to the motion for instructions from the Legal Service, indicated that it is a matter that cannot be without consequences “because the damage done is very great. During the process, the Ministry had no choice but to proceed with the reserve issues and that was done”.
Asked about the backup essay, the minister noted that “there are expected to be backup subjects that could be used, the children were in the classrooms and they had to be examined. They should make us all feel responsible, especially teachers in schools. We should not have such cases of irresponsibility”.
Children left school
Meanwhile, another sub-chapter under the big chapter of leaking issues is what will happen to the students who either left school, or refused to be tested, after the uproar that was caused, with the minister noting that all cases will be examined separately.
“The children who left school, they will have the opportunity to pass to the second examination series, although this is not provided for. I am unable to say the number. It will be established what happened and solutions will be provided for everyone. The correction will take into account the disruption caused. Yesterday 66 children were absent and those who left are 250 children. We can handle the matter. If the 66 were unjustifiably absent, that's another issue, if they were justified, that's another issue.”