Aug 03, 2021 News
– Policy changes aimed at serving best interest of candidates
Kaieteur News – All is set for the writing of the 2021 National Grade Six Assessment (NGSA) which will be written tomorrow, Wednesday, August 4, 2021, and the following day, Thursday 5th, 2021. This is according to a Ministry of Education release which noted that on Wednesday, Grade Six students will be writing English paper two and paper one in the morning and science paper one and two in the afternoon. On Thursday, candidates will be writing mathematics papers one and two in the morning and social studies papers one and two in the afternoon.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, regulations and guidelines have been established to ensure the safe and incident-free writing of this examination, the release added. These measures include the sanitising and washing of hands before entering examination buildings, the wearing of the recommended face mask, observing and maintaining social distancing at all times and the cleaning and sanitising of buildings and furniture.
Also, candidates are not required to wear their respective primary school uniforms. In the case where a child is not dressed in uniform, they must be dressed modestly and as best as possible with clothes that bear little or no writing, pictures and or diagrams that would give cause or contribute to any form of cheating.
Candidates, the Ministry noted, will be allowed to leave the examination centres to have lunch but must return at least 15 minutes before the beginning of the next session. Candidates can take a bottle of water or suitable liquid to drink into the examination room once the bottle has no writing that can aid the student in the examination, the release added.
This year, there are 33 new examination centres spread across the 11 education districts where candidates will be writing the examination. This was done to make the lives of children and their parents easier by eliminating the burden of having to travel long distances to get to their respective exam centres, which were not the schools they attended.
In addition to the examination centres, the Ministry of Education has established emergency centres that can accommodate those candidates who may have tested positive for COVID-19 or are in quarantine. This was done for the 2021 CSEC and CAPE examinations whereby COVID-19 positive candidates were accommodated and allowed to write their examinations in a separate building.
According to the release too, parents of Grade Six students who have tested positive or are in quarantine but are still able and wish to write the examination are asked to contact the school’s Head teacher or indicate the same to the respective Department of Education. Parents can also call 226-1237 to make the necessary arrangements.
Further, as of this year, candidates who are 12 years, 7 months and older will not be penalised with respect to their raw scores as in previous years. This category of candidates will have their raw scores standardised the same way as all other candidates. In addition, the individual subject scores for each candidate will be given to decimal places and their total score will be rounded to the nearest whole number. This is to ensure a more accurate reflection of each candidate’s performance.
Moreover, to ensure candidates are prepared to write the examination, the Ministry has implemented several interventions. All Grade Six students in the public education system have received an NGSA Care Package containing face masks, pencils, erasers, sharpener, hand sanitiser and ruler.
Also, “to help our pupils prepare for the examination, each pupil was given a study package containing social studies and science notes, worksheets for the four subjects, past papers from the last five years and 12 textbooks on the four subject areas of English, mathematics, science and social studies,” the release stated.
The Ministry also launched its ‘Quiz Me’ platform on its website which offers students the opportunity to practice NGSA-type questions and be given their results instantaneously. The NGSA Booster Programme was also launched whereby local teachers are recorded teaching the topics which can feature on the examination. These videos are aired on the Guyana Learning Channel according to a timetabled schedule and are also available for streaming on the Guyana Learning Channel’s YouTube channel. All of these interventions catered to the consolidated curriculum which the Ministry prepared to cater for the reduced hours students were engaged.
The Ministry also extended best wishes to students during their examination and added, “we commit to continue working in their best interest.”
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