Problems with exams at vast majority of Netherlands high schools

There are still problems with school exams in the vast majority of high schools in the Netherlands, the Education Inspectorate found in  study of 104 schools launched after major issues at VMBO Maastricht in 2018. Although schools in secondary education have become more alert, 70 percent of schools did not comply with the regulations around exams, reports.

For example, the Inspectorate found schools where exam components were missing, or where certain tests were not taken. The schools were alerted to the problems and have since addressed them, the Inspectorate said. It did not come across any school with problems as major as at VMBO Maastricht.

Minster Arie Slob for Primary- and Secondary Education called the results alarming, but not unexpected. "Schools must take their responsibility. The organization school exams must be better," he said. In October last year, Slob announced measures to improve the organization of exams in secondary education. From the 2021-2022 school year, all secondary schools must have an examination committee, for example.

In June 2018, the final exams of 354 pupils at VMBO Maastricht were declared invalid after it was found that the school management and teachers failed to comply with the rules around exams. All these pupils hat to retake exams in order to get their diplomas.