The Scholarship Examination (also known as the Grade 5 exam) is a highly competitive Sri Lankan examination conducted by the Department of Examinations of the Ministry of Education. It is optional for students to undertake it during the final year of primary school (Grade 5 (usually ages 9–10)). The exams are held in two mediums: Sinhala, and Tamil.
The examinations were introduced by the late Hon. Dr. C.W.W. Kannangara, who took the initiative in establishing free education when he was the Minister of Education. Under this initiative the government established Madhya MahaVidyalayas (MMV – Central Colleges) that were scattered around the island. The Scholarship Examination was a means for gifted students from villages to move to better schools with government scholarships.
At Zahira College Colombo, this exam is conducted as a means of awakening the children and parents towards exam based education. Candidates who score above the cut-off marks are given full scholarship during their stay at the College.
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