THE Ministry of Education yesterday revealed it investigated seven cases of malpractice or copying among students who sat for the Fiji Seventh Form Examination (FSFE) last year.
This comes in wake of the ministry's decision to award zero marks to 11 students of a Labasa school who were alleged to have cheated on their Biology exam.
However, the ministry did not say whether similar punishments were given in the other six cases.
In a statement yesterday, permanent secretary for Education Doctor Brij Lal said the ministry did not condone cheating — a fact conveyed to all schools before external exams.
"The standard procedure is when a student is found to have cheated or copied during the external examination, he or she will be disqualified," Dr Lal said.
"The Policy on External Examinations and Assessment has a section on External Examination Malpractice," he said.
"It states any malpractice during an examination can lead to disqualification and the award of zero mark in the subject concerned.
"Moreover, the disqualification is made within reasonable time after careful consideration of the evidence provided."
He added the 6600 Form Seven candidates in 154 secondary schools around the country were advised of this in a FSFE 2012 candidate's information leaflet.
Commenting on the Labasa students' case, Dr Lal said markers had discovered and reported "irregularities" in the students' responses.
"Standard procedure was followed in every step of the investigation and the findings are conclusive," Dr Lal said.
"As a result, based on existing examination rules and policy, the students involved were disqualified hence the zero mark for Biology," he said.