Hundreds march in Egypt over cancelled high school exams

AP News
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Posted: Jun 27, 2016 10:29 AM

CAIRO (AP) — Hundreds of Egyptian students protested in front of the Education Ministry in Cairo on Monday over the cancellation of some high school exams after the answers were leaked.

Demanding the resignation of Education Minister Al-Helali el-Sherbini, the students, accompanied by some parents, later marched toward Tahrir Square, the epicenter of Egypt's 2011 uprising against longtime autocrat Hosni Mubarak.

"This is unfair," said student Amr Adel. "The student who didn't study will get higher grades than us. We were studying hard for 12 months... why all this unfairness?"

Twelve Education Ministry officials were detained after answers to the final nationwide exams for Arabic, religion and other subjects were posted earlier this month on Facebook by an anonymous user who said he wants to shine a spotlight on corruption and inefficiency.

Large protests are rare in Egypt, where President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi has led a harsh crackdown on dissent.

Egypt's education system has long been plagued by overcrowded classrooms and poorly trained teachers, forcing millions of students who can afford it to rely on private tutors. Exam scores directly determine entrance to universities.