Primary Leaving Examinations (PLE) ended smoothly yesterday despite hiccups such as candidates sitting the papers from hospital, officials said.
A total of 237,181 sat PLE this year, a significant increase from 194,679 last year, figures from Rwanda education Board (REB) show.
PLE started on Monday and concluded yesterday.
Candidates sat five subjects; Mathematics, Science and Elementary Technology, Social Studies, English, and Kinyarwanda.
Speaking to The New Times, Michael Tusiime, the deputy director in charge of examinations and accreditation at REB, said the exams ended smoothly.
"We are still gathering information but we have not received any report about malpractice, which is a great improvement. However, there are cases of malpractices that are discovered in marking process and we will be vigilant," he said.
Marking scripts, he said, will start on Monday and is expected to end within three weeks.
The teachers marking the exams will first do the same paper and dummies will be marked to harmonise the marking, he added.
15 candidates were sick
Tusiime said at least 15 candidates sat exams while sick, some from hospital.
One candidate delivered on Tuesday and sat her last paper from Kamonyi District Hospital, he said.
Some others were either admitted or taken to hospital for treatment. They include one female who sat exams while admitted at King Faisal Hospital, Kigali, according to officials.
"About 15 candidates managed to sit exams while sick after doctors' consent. It was their right and they managed to complete the exams. This is the kind of bravery we need, nothing should stand in the way of academic pursuit," he said.
Candidates speak out
Candidates who spoke to The New Times yesterday said they had done their best. Many expressed optimism that they will make it to secondary school next academic year.
Tony Prince Uwizeye, 13, from Ecole Primaire Ntwari, said: "The exams were not that hard.
"English was easy, Mathematics was hard while the three others were moderate. I hope I will pass, join secondary and my dream is to become an engineer in the near future," he said.
Meanwhile, Ordinary and Advanced Level exams will start on Monday.
Some 98,268 candidates are expected to sit O-Level exams, up from 91,492 last year, while 44,037 candidates are registered to sit A-Level this year, compared to 41,719 last year.
This time round, candidates from Teachers' Training Colleges (TTCs) will sit REB exams for the first time, unlike previously when they were under University of Rwanda's College of Education.
Over 3,000 TTC students will national exams this year.