While Mathematics this year has reflected a one percent improvement, English was among a group of 11 subjects that did not measure up to last year’s performance.
Disclosures in this regard were forthcoming yesterday when the results of the 2017 Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate [CSEC] examination were officially released by the Ministry of Education at the National Centre for Educational Research Development [NCERD] in Kingston, Georgetown.
According to Minister of Education, Ms. Nicolette Henry, a total of 12,684 candidates registered for the 2017 CSEC examination which represents a drop from last year’s 12,809.
Local candidates were able to write subjects from a pool of 35 and according to the Education Minister, the results this year reflect an overall increase of one percent.
Guyana this year achieved 63.8 percent pass rate with grades one to three. Of these 12.49 percent of the entries gained grade one, 22.72 percent gained grade two and 28.47 percent gained grade three.
However, according to Minister Henry, the subject areas of Music and Theatre Arts saw a 100 percent pass rate this year.
She also highlighted that the results this year reflect outstanding performances in 10 subjects areas with over 90 percent of candidates gaining grades one to three passes. The 10 subject areas are Music, Theatre Arts, Physical Education, Sports, Agriculture Science, Electronic Documentation Preparation and Management, Religious Education, Food and Nutrition, Industrial Technology [building], Agriculture Science.
Added to this, Minister Henry revealed yesterday that Guyana has been able to record improved performances in 14 subject areas including Chemistry, Electronic Documentation Preparation and Management, Economics, Office Administration, Principles of Accounts, Principles of Business, Religious Education, Caribbean History, Textile Clothing and Fashion, Family and Resource Management, Food and Nutrition, Industrial Technology [Building], Industrial Technology [Electrical] and Industrial Technology [Mechanical].
According to the Minster, four subject areas were consistent with the results of last year. These are Agriculture Science, Mathematics, French and Physical Education. In fact, she revealed that this year, for the first time, Guyanese candidates wrote Portuguese with a pass rate of 83 percent with grade one to three passes.
But according to her, there are 11 subject areas in which the performance did not measure up when compared to last year’s performance. These subjects she disclosed yesterday are Biology, English A, English B, Geography, Integrated Science, Physics, Social Studies, Spanish, Visual Arts, Human and Social Biology and Additional Mathematics.
“With these performances, appropriate measures will have to be taken to ensure overall improvement in performance in all subject areas,” said Minister Henry.
Commenting on the need for intervening measures, too, was Chief Education Officer [CEO], Mr. Marcel Hutson. He said that in order to address the evident shortcomings, a number of systems are currently being put in place.
Even as he emphasised that “we have a lot of work to do,” the CEO revealed that the Ministry has been making full use of its National Subject Committee which is tasked with making decisions in relation to the areas of weaknesses and strengths within the school system. Information garnered through the Committee, Hutson disclosed, is passed on to the Regional Subject Committees, and by extension, the schools are impacted.
But since the improvements such as the one percent improvement in Mathematics is by no means something the Ministry hopes to boast about, Hutson said that the Ministry will also be relying heavily on the Guyana Secondary Education Improvement Project.
Added to this, he said “We are also looking currently at the appraisal of our teachers which brings to bear a greater level of accountability in our classrooms. So by our appraisal, we will be able to determine where our teachers are weak and tackle those areas definitively.”
Further, the CEO said that “we are going to mirror some of the things we have done in relation to the National Grade Six Assessment that we saw improvement in, in terms of preparing an action plan to deal definitively with areas of weaknesses.”
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