ISSN: 1391 - 0531
Sunday September 30, 2007
Vol. 42 - No 18

Scholarship exam: Statistics poor, but more have passed

By Malik Gunatilleke

More than 46,000 or 16.29% of the students who sat the Grade five scholarship exam, failed to obtain even 50 marks out of the total of 200, the Department of Examinations has revealed. According to the Department’s statistics and analysis report, of these 46,000 students, 7264 obtained less than 20 marks out of a total of 200.

Only 11.95% of the 283,737 students who sat the examination were able to reach the cut off mark of 150 for Sinhala medium students, and 143 for Tamil medium students. Nearly 250,000 students failed the examination.

Meanwhile, only 813 students received over 181 marks while 13,959 received more than 161. 362 students scored zero.

However, Department of Examinations Chief Anura Edirisinghe told The Sunday Times that despite these dismal figures, a substantially higher percentage of students had passed the examination in comparison with the past five years.

“About 12% of students passed the examination this year despite the cut off mark being raised from an average of 143 to 150,” he said.

A total of 33,894 students got marks above the cut off mark, in comparison to 23,467 and 23,132 in 2005 and 2006 respectively. This indicates a 4% increase in the number of students passing the examination despite the total number of candidates this year being less than in 2006.

Jaffna District reported the highest success rate amongst candidates who sat the examination with 14.92% managing to get the required cut off mark. Gampaha and Kurunegala districts followed with success rates of 14.77% and 14.76% respectively. Colombo district was placed 13th with just 11.49% of the students getting the cut off mark while Killinochchi District reported the lowest percentage of just 5.52%.

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