School-based Examinations

Examinations Standard Operating Procedures for Candidates

The school’s examination procedures take reference from the policy of the Singapore Examinations and Assessment Board (SEAB).

Preparation Before Examinations

  1. ‘Examinations’ refers to all weighted assessments held in school – Level Tests, Mid-year Examination (MYE) and End-of-Year Examination (EYE).

  1. Candidates are to remove all books, files and any other printed material under their desks at least one day before the start of the examination. They are to arrange their desks according to the order of their index numbers and any other instructions given by the form-teacher. 

  1. Candidates are to prepare their own set of stationery for examinations. There is strictly no borrowing of stationery during the examinations. The following is a suggested list of stationery.




Blue or black ink ballpoint pen 

At least 2

Pencil or mechanical pencil 


Sharpener or tube of pencil lead 




Soft eraser for pencil 




Other subject-specific stationery:

Chinese Dictionary 


Calculator (without formula sheet and case) 


Mathematical Instrument Set (without formula sheet and case) 


Long Ruler 


Flexible or French curve 


  1. Candidates are to write in dark blue or black pen. Candidates are to use a HB pencil for any diagrams or graphs. 

  1. Candidates are only allowed to use the approved calculator models and dictionaries. Candidates should refer to SEAB website for the list of approved calculator models and dictionaries. 

  1. The school does not make provision for candidates to re-sit examinations. Candidates who are absent for any examination due to medical reasons are to submit a Medical Certificate (MC) to their Form Teacher immediately upon their return. Failure to produce a valid MC will result in a zero mark for the particular examination. Letters from parents will not be accepted. 

  1. If a candidate who is unwell chooses to sit for the examination, his marks will be counted. Candidate cannot choose to void the paper even if he has an existing MC.

During Examinations 

  1. All bags, books and files are to be placed neatly outside the examination venues at least ten minutes before the start of the examination.

  1. Before entering the examination venue, candidates are to ensure that they are not in possession of any unauthorised materials (e.g. notes and reference materials) and communication or electronic devices capable of storing and displaying visual and verbal information (e.g. handphones, smart watches and data storage device).

  1. There must not be any verbal or non-verbal communication once candidates are in the examination venue. All queries are to be directed solely to the invigilators. 

  1. Candidates are not allowed to leave the examination, quarantine and holding room without permission from the invigilator. Candidates should not visit the toilet in the course of the examination unless absolutely necessary.

  1. Before the commencement of the paper, all candidates are to ensure that

  • they have received the correct question paper and the necessary writing materials; 

  • they have read the instructions on the examination cover page; and 

  • they have checked that their paper has the specified number of printed pages and that the printing is clear. 

  1. Candidates must stop writing immediately when the invigilator announces that the time is up.

  1. At the end of the paper, candidates are to ensure that all answer sheets are handed in duly. Submission of answer sheets after the collection of scripts will not be accepted. All unused writing papers are to be returned to the invigilator. 

  1. Candidates are to remain silent while the invigilator collects and accounts for all the scripts. Upon the invigilators’ instructions, candidates are to assemble outside the examination venue and move quietly to the dispersal area (canteen for the first paper and front porch for the last paper).

  1. Disciplinary actions will be taken against candidates who do not comply with the examination procedures and invigilators’ instructions.

  1. The school takes a very serious view of examination malpractice or attempts to compromise the integrity of the examination. Malpractice refers to actions of candidates which infringe examination rules and regulations or which allow candidates an advantage in the examination or which enable them to influence other candidates’ performance in the examination. 

Examples of malpractice include: 

  • Collusion or attempted collusion with other candidates; 

  • Copying or attempting to copy from another candidate; 

  • Writing offensive or obscene remarks in the answer scripts; 

  • Removing from the examination venue any used or unused writing paper;

  • Possession of communication or electronic devices capable of storing and displaying visual and verbal information (e.g. handphones, smart watches and data storage device);

  • Possession of books, notes, dictionaries, calculators or any other reference materials not authorised for use in the examination; and

  • Verbal or non-verbal communication during the examination. 

An irregularity report will be filed and follow-up disciplinary actions will be taken in accordance to the school’s code of conduct, rules and regulations. One or more of the following may be taken against students who deliberately breach any material provision of these standard operating procedures:

  • Deduction of marks;

  • Have the examination paper cancelled (i.e. awarded a zero for the paper in question);

  • Refused entry for subsequent papers and be awarded a zero; and/or

  • Lowering of conduct grade.

Reporting and Dismissal Time During Examinations

  1. Candidates taking the first paper must report to school at the usual time for morning assembly. 

  1. Candidates are to report to the examination venue 15 minutes before the start of the second/ third paper.

  1. Unless other instructions are given, candidates will be dismissed at the end of the last paper during the examination period.

Promotion Status


Secondary 1 Express 

Secondary 2 Express 

Secondary 3 Express 

Promotional Criterion

A pass in EL and a pass percentage in the average of all subjects

A pass in EL and a pass percentage in the average of all subjects

A pass in EL and a pass in 2 other subjects

Promotional criterion 

is fulfilled 

Promoted to Sec 2 Express

Promoted to Sec 3 Express 

Promoted to Sec 4 Express 

Promotional criterion is not fulfilled

Laterally transferred to Sec 2 Normal (A)


Retained at Sec 1 Express 

(exceptional cases with MOE approval)

Laterally transferred to Sec 3 Normal (A)


Retained at Sec 2 Express 

(exceptional cases with MOE approval)

If a pass in 5 subjects is obtained, advanced to Sec 4 Express.


  • Laterally transferred to Sec 4 Normal(A) if the student is at or above maximum age or

  • Retained at Sec 3 Express if the student is below maximum age.

Maris Stella High School does not offer the Normal (Academic) or the Normal (Technical) stream. Student who fail to meet the promotion criteria may have to seek transfer to another school which offers these streams.