The Bhutan Council for School Examinations and Assessment (BCSEA) will bar from future marking camps those officials responsible for miscalculating this year’s arts topper, Tashi Norbu’s Dzongkha II marks.

The officials have also been issued memos recording their lapses.

The investigation found that the officials had erred when recording the marks on a computer.

BCSEA secretary Tenzin Dorji said that an investigation found that Tashi Norbu’s Dzongkha II marks was recorded as 52.5 instead of 89.5. The real marks came to light following a reevaluation of the Jigme Sherubling Central School student’s Dzongkha papers.

The topper claimed on Bhutan Broadcasting Service that his friends had applied for the reevaluation on his behalf.

The council checked both Tashi Norbu’s Dzongkha papers. Following the reevaluation, he was found to have secured 88.75 in Dzongkha I and 89.5 in Dzongkha II. The error had occurred when the marks were transferred to a computer. “Dzongkha II marks was wrongly entered as 52.5,” Tenzin Dorji said.

Following the change in Tashi Norbu’s marks, Ugyen Phuntsho of Kelki Higher Secondary School who was initially declared the topper dropped to second position. Wangchuk Lhamo of Jakar Higher Secondary School and Dorji Wangchuk of Jigme Sherubling Central School who were initially in the second position slipped to third.

With the new marks, the education ministry declared Tashi Norbu as the new arts topper for 2016.

The investigation was ordered by education minister Norbu Wangchuk on March 1. “Sherig Lyonpo has called for an investigation to hold responsible (the) people accountable for the errors,” stated a post on the ministry’s Facebook page.

Following the investigation, BCSEA took action against those responsible for the error. “As per the policy, these officials will not be invited to take part in the marking camp and were further issued memos in their names informing them of their lapses as data tabulators and managers,” Tenzin Dorji said.

The council has also warned the controller and School Examination Division members, and directed them to review their assessment process and to initiate new practices so that can ensure error free results.

Save for Tashi Norbu’s marks in Dzongkha II, there were no changes in the marks for 278 students who applied for rechecks.

When BCSEA receives an application for a reevaluation, the subject coordinators review the applicants’ answer scripts to find errors in marking or in addition of the marks. “Indiscriminate of whether there are changes or not, the subject coordinators have to submit a report to the management with the applicant’s answer scripts with new marks or no change for approval and endorsement,” Tenzin Dorji said.

Tempa Wangdi