Power outage hits Covent Garden Secondary
…as subject requiring computers being undertaken
The delivery of the Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) at the Covent Garden Secondary School on the East Bank of Demerara was yesterday fraught with a great degree of anxiety due to a power outage. To make matters worse, the subject which was being conducted was Electronic Documentation Preparation and Management (EDPM) which requires the use of a computer, hence the need for electricity.
As a CSEC subject, EDPM is upgraded from the typing subject. Electronic meaning that, the computer is used to train students to use basic tools – Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint and the Internet – to prepare certain documents. It also teaches how to manage files and folders, and the workstation. It is then linked to real-life secnarios, by showing how performing certain tasks could assist with those in the workplace. Teachers try to link this subject to Principles of Business (POB), Principles of Accounts (POA) and Office Administration (OA), which are all CSEC examinations.
Some students had turned up for the examination around 08:00 hours but did not leave until sometime in the evening. Reports are that the 100-odd students who were listed to write the subject yesterday were divided into two groups. The first section was slated to start at 09:35 hours and conclude around 11:35 hours. However, by the time the initial group was slated to complete the task at hand the power outage had occurred. This development, in essence, prevented the examiners from printing the very crucial work ahead of allowing the second group to commence the examination.
According to one parent, her daughter had not even eaten breakfast before leaving home yesterday morning and was forced to remain in the classroom for several hours pending the completion of the exam due to the situation.
A teacher related that there was nothing that could have been done as the examiners were in charge and could not have permitted anything further to be done until the power supply was restored. This, however, did not happen until sometime after 15:00 hours by which time efforts were being made by teachers to solicit support from members of the community to borrow a generator.
Yesterday marked the third day since the commencement of the CSEC examination which is set to end on June 10. According to the Caribbean Examinations Council, the results of the exam are likely to be made available to the Overseas Examination Commission (Jamaica) and local Ministries of Education around the region by August 17 and will subsequently be delivered to candidates.