Dutch scrap final school exams due to virus
Dutch education authorities Tuesday scrapped this year’s central exit exams for school leavers as a result of the coronavirus, which has claimed 276 lives in the country.
Schools have been shut since March 16 in the Netherlands, which Tuesday saw its highest one-day jump in deaths, 63, since COVID-19 claimed its first victim here just over two weeks ago. Health authorities have also reported 5,560 cases of infection.
A pass or fail will now solely be determined on the marks pupils received during the school year, the Dutch Education Ministry said in a statement.
“I want to give all students the opportunity to obtain a full diploma and thus progress without delay towards higher education in these times of crisis,” Education Minister Arie Slob said.
Dutch schools were also given more time, until the start of June to conclude the rest of scheduled exams.
Authorities however urged schools to organise exams as much as possible with social distancing in mind, for example doing it via videoconferencing.
If tests cannot be adjudicated remotely they will be taken in school buildings, but with a safe distance of 1.5 metres (five feet) between each pupil, authorities said.