The sudden removal of university academics who set the GCE Advanced Level question papers in some of the subjects, have created waves within the education sector, Parliament was informed last week.
It is learnt that Senior Professor D. Atapattu who had set the Economics question paper for more than ten years been removed from the task of setting the paper for the AL examination in August this year. Further, the university dons who set the Business Studies and Accounting question papers have also been removed from the respective panels.
United National Party (UNP) MP Akila Viraj Kariyawasam raising this matter in Parliament last week, said this would set a bad precedent and asked Education Minister Bandula Gunawardane why such a decision was taken all of a sudden.
“I know for a fact that Prof. Atapattu had set the Economic question paper for more than years. Today, he has been sidelined. Instead, a professor of management has been assigned to do the job. It is a joke. How can a professor of management professor set the Economic question paper for an important competitive examination such as the Advanced Level,” he asked.
The GCE Advanced Level Examination is a competitive examination conducted annually to select students for various degree programmes offered by our universities.
However, the minister said only the Department of Examination was involved in setting question papers independent of any political interference.
“It is inappropriate to raise questions on such a confidential process in Parliament. Right from the beginning, the test papers have been prepared devoid of political influence right,” he said.
Although Mr. Kariyawasam kept prodding the minister for an answer, the minister insisted that such matters should not have been raised in the open.(Kelum Bandara)