Prime Minister Hun Sen is scheduled to meet with high school students who passed the Grade 12 exam with an “A” grade following the announcement of the results by the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport on January 14, indicating a nearly four-fold increase in the number of students earning the top grade.
“I congratulate all grandchildren who passed their high school exam across the country. I appreciate that the number of grandchildren who passed the exam with an “A” grade has reached 1,753 students this year.
“This year, I will meet with you to reward you for the hard work you’ve done studying to earn an “A” on the exam. The time and place of the meeting will be decided by [Minister of Education, Youth and Sport Hang Chuon Naron],” Hun Sen said in a Facebook post on January 14.
The education ministry released the official results of the exam on January 14, indicating that 65.65 per cent of the more than 110,000 registered candidates passed the test.
This represents a slight drop compared to 2019, when 68.62 per cent of all candidates passed the exam. In 2020, due to the prolonged Covid-19 pandemic, all Grade 12 students were passed automatically, though without any grades attached.
This year, a total of 72,016 of 114,187 candidates passed the exam. Of those there were 1,753 whop received an A; 5,215 earned B grades; 11,634 earned C grades; 23,499 earned D grades and 29,915 received E grades.
The 1,753 A grades is nearly four times the number in 2019, which only had 443 students earning the top mark.
Of the 1,753 grade A students there were 565 in the capital, 153 in Siem Reap, 127 in Kandal, 123 in Battambang, and 118 in Kampong Cham while the other provinces had less than 100 students each who received the top grade.
The ministry said the examination and scoring process went smoothly without any significant irregularities.
Following the announcement of the results, a Facebook user with the account name Anji Naya posted a request to Hun Sen via comment on Hun Sen’s post.
“I would like to ask [Hun Sen] – if I fail the exam, is there some way for me to still pass it? I just want to pass the exam,” she said.
“If you fail the exam you will still have learned something. No one is required to sit for the exam and spend money and energy on it. Please granddaughter if you failed this year then work hard and prepare for next year’s exam,” Hun Sen replied.
Deth Rat, a Phnom Penh student who got an “A” on his exam, said that he earned this result through all of his hard work. He received an A grade in every subject but history, which he got a “B” in. He said he attended Bak Touk public school from grades 3 to 11 before changing to a private school for grade 12.
“I’ve tried my best to study ever since I was young. I’m excited to meet [Hun Sen] and I’m looking forward to the occasion,” he told The Post via telephone.
Kes Leanhor also received an “A” on her exam. She attended Mong Russey high school in Battambang province and she expressed happiness about her opportunity to meet the prime minister.
“I have been expecting to get an “A” and I’ve tried my best since. During Covid-19 when schools were closed, I still tried my best to learn online though my internet connection was poor at my location,” she said.
Leanhor’s mother Him Yeng was thrilled to see her daughter received the top grade. She said Leanhor studied from the morning until 11pm at night and then got up at 4am to begin studying again.
“I sometimes had to stop her from studying because I was concerned for her health. What major she will choose is totally up to her, I will agree with her choice whatever it is,” she said, adding that out of her five children only Leanhor had passed the exam with an “A” grade.
Education ministry spokesman Ros Soveacha said that no date was set as of January 16 for the prime minister’s meeting with the students but it will be announced as soon as the arrangements are made.