Hundreds of students failed to turn up for their final matriculation examination in southern Chin State, causing teachers to wonder why they didn’t make it to classes on Wednesday. Salai Aung Min, director of the educational department for Paletwa township, said their absence could be related to problems with transportation.
Fighting in the area between the Burma Army, locally called Tatmadaw, and the Arakan Army (AA) has been intense in the last weeks and many speculate the clashes could have prevented the students from getting to school.
Last month, fighting stopped shipments of rice, cooking oil and other domestic products from reaching Paletwa township, causing prices of available produce to soar.
There are 2,690 high school students in Paletwa township and only 2,217 took their examination, Salai Aung Min said. There were 473 students that didn’t make it.
“Mostly external students were absent…Regular students took their exams,” Salai Aung Min said.
In Burma, external students are those that failed their matriculation exams twice and are taking it a third time. These students do not attend classes like regular students.
Paletwa township had the highest numbers of absentees for the matriculation examinations in Chin State.
There are 14,177 high school students enrolled in the state and 12,374 students finished their matriculation exam. A total of 1,083 students were marked as absent.