PETALING JAYA - Malaysia's Education Ministry is grappling with leaks in two papers in a key examination.
The ministry announced on Wednesday that the Science paper in the UPSR examination, scheduled for Thursday morning, would be postponed to September 30 after the questions appeared on social media, local reports said.
UPSR is Malaysia's equivalent of Singapore's Primary School Leaving Examination.
On Thursday, the ministry said the English paper - both paper 1 and 2 - was also leaked and students who sat for the exam in the morning will have to re-take the paper, The Star reported.
"This is a serious matter, and we will make sure that the sternest action is taken against those responsible for the leak,'' the newspaper quoted Second Education Minister Datuk Seri Idris Jusoh as saying. "I apologise to all the parents and pupils involved," he told reporters on Thursday.
He added that if possible, authorities will reschedule the English exam on the same day as the Science exam.
There have been claims that the UPSR papers for Bahasa Melayu and Mathematics were leaked as well, but Idris said such claims were unsubstantiated, according to The Star.
"We cannot simply announce such leaks without investigating the matter, these (English and Science) are the only papers proven to have leaks.
"We will also set up a committee on the matter, to look into the technology and security measures involved to make sure that this does not happen again," he said.
Idris also said that such incidents proved that the current education system was too exam-oriented, according to The Star.
"This is why we introduced the school-based assessment system, to take this pressure off.
"Students have become too focused on just the examinations, that they're willing to cheat," he said.
The Star quoted a parent as saying the leak was a complete letdown after all the hard work and effort put in by the Year Six pupils.
"Whoever leaked this has to be taken to task as it's not fair to all honest and hardworking pupils," said the parent who was identified only as Lee.
Another parent Norayah Mohd Khalid is worried about the prolonged stress her daughter would be put under.
"She has been studying hard and was all prepared to sit for the test," she told the newspaper.
A total of 473,175 pupils are sitting for the UPSR this year at 8,299 examination centres nationwide.