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All systems in place for tomorrow’s SEA exams
All systems are in place for tomorrow’s Secondary Entrance Assessment (SEA) Examination, which will determine the future of 17,918 pupils. CEO of the Ministry of Education Harry Seecharan said yesterday this year’s figure represented a little more than that of 2011. “Generally we have between 17,000 to 18,000 students writing SEA each year. This year we saw a slight increase but that’s normal,” Seecharan said.
Assuring all primary schools were ready he said stringent security and monitoring measures also were in place. “We have the scripts, proper transport and security arrangements are all in place and we are comfortable with all the mechanisms in general,” he added.
He said the postponement of the exam from March to May not only gave weaker students the opportunity to catch up on their studies but also allowed students to engage in a full term. He added: “We did a lot of consultation before we decided to change the date of SEA and the majority of stakeholders were happy with the extra time of two months.
“Part of the strategy was particularly to provide the weaker students with more time.” The change in date was also to improve planning methods at primary schools, it was stated. Seecharan said: “Normally, right after the March exams children would be sent home having nothing to do and therefore were not given the full school term to engage in extra-curricular activities.
“Children who were in Standard Four would be promoted to Standard Five immediately after March, so the extra time was also to change some of the ways schools implemented programmes.” Wishing all pupils the best of luck, Seecharan also urged parents to ensure children arrived at school on time and have a proper breakfast.
Minister in the Ministry of Education Clifton de Couteau, who recommended the change of date, said he was pleased with the preparations for tomorrow. He said: “We are ready to go and we hope everything goes smoothly at all the schools. “We went into microscopic details about SEA arrangements at a meeting on Monday and I am satisfied with the arrangements.”
President of the National Parent Teachers’ Association Zena Ramatali said concerns were raised that delaying the exam prolonged the stress. “There were those who were for and against the change of date. We will have to do an assessment of the SEA results to determine how it impacted on students,” she said.
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