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School principals charged after exam leak

File photo of a Burmese middle school.

Three principals in central Burma have been charged for allegedly leaking questions ahead of local final exams.

The Magwe Education Office is prosecuting the three after an internal investigation revealed the individuals responsible ahead of the 4th Grade and 8th Grade final exams, which begun on 15 February. The confidential questions were allegedly disclosed to “irrelevant persons”, according to state media reports.

Government newspapers on Monday reported that an education officer in Chauk Township, Magwe Division filed official complaints with police against Myat Soe, Aung So Lin and Htet Myat Kyaw – the principals of three Basic Education Middle School (BEMS) branches in the township.

The controversy angered parents and local education staff.

Thet Naing, principal at an unrelated BEMS branch in Magwe Township, also in Magwe Division, said the leak would weaken the trust parents place in school administrators.

“This shouldn’t affect students who studied hard, but will benefit those who slacked off through the school year as they will now pass their exams.

“This is also detrimental to the trust between parents and teachers, which is a disgrace not only to staff in Magwe Division, but also the entire education department,” he said.

Aung Lwin, the father of an 8th Grade student in Chauk Township, called on the government to investigate.

“Our country is about to change to democracy – the new parliament is now in session and I would like to call on the government on this occasion to investigate the corruption in the Education Department, as well as the Minister of Education and regional and local education officers,” he said.