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Daudzās skolās netiek pie pirmā digitālā eksāmena

Online school exam trial is a flop

On Thursday, November 10, in schools across Latvia, it was planned to take the centralized exam online for the first time as a system trial. However, not all schools and pupils managed to join the State Test Information System, Latvian Radio reported.

The online trial aimed to allow pupils and schools to prepare for the first digital exams at the end of this school year. This exam is optional, and participation in it was voluntary so that students could get acquainted with the digital version of the exam, but system developers could make sure it worked.

The scheduled opening time of the examination was 14:00.

The exam was also tested at Riga State Gymnasium No. 1. At 14:00 there was still no sign of the exam. The pupils were given a break in the hope that the system would then work but it failed. The Ministry of Education and Science (IZM) asked for a further ten minutes to wait. An official in charge of the ministry also arrived. The pupils waited for the exam for about an hour and a half.

"Today, the system has not been restored. So far. You can go home. But these worksheets can also be taken home and done at home in the evening," said Kaspars Veldre, deputy director of the IZM Information Technology Department.

How would it be if today were the real exam day? "If I can say so – God forbid! If it was the real exam day today, it would be pretty nasty to pupils. It would be a real degree of discrimination [..]," commented Deputy Director of Riga State Gymnasium No. 1 Jānis Zeimanis.

Grade 12 student Toms was not surprised: "Honestly, I had expected it, given the experience of recent years with olympiads. I hope there will be other test exams until they all get it together. So I don't care."

"It would have been better if we had managed to find out what the exam would have been. But now, hopefully, when the real exam takes place, it will be fixed," grade 12 student Katrīna said.

The Ministry of Education and Science said that in some schools all had gone smoothly. The problem was on the developer's side of the system.

“We also contacted system developers, they made some technical errors in the system code that will soon be eliminated. Accordingly, pupils will be able to continue to perform these tests at home," said Veldre.

The next trial is scheduled for December 1.

The real state exams at the end of the year will take place in electronic format in programming, social sciences, geography, history, culture, and art. 

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