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Mar 14, 2016

Over 7000 Students Sit Annual P.S.E.

Across the country, students sat the first phase of the Primary School Examinations in English and the Sciences. Most of the seven thousand plus students studiously prepared for the anticipated exams; the results often determine placement for high schools. Despite readiness to take the tests, there was eagerness as well as nervousness among the students. News Five’s Isani Cayetano reports.

 

Isani Cayetano, Reporting

Day One of the annual Primary School Examinations has seen an estimated seven thousand, two hundred and fifty-seven students being tested in two subjects today.  Despite the overall number of students who registered to sit the exam, it is a nominal decrease when compared to last year.  2016 also represents a slight upturn, there are more males taking P.S.E. this year than females.

 

Nelson Longsworth

Nelson Longsworth, Director, Examinations Unit

“A little more males than females, about one percent difference.  We have the children from standard six sitting the Primary School Examinations, which is termed the P.S.E., from two hundred and eighty-six primary schools or institutions.  There are a few institutions that participate in the exams besides the primary schools and the primary schools would be the wide band from the government-aided to the private institutions.”

 

Across the country, twenty-nine high schools, including E.P. Yorke serve as examination centers.  Eleven students from St. Agnes Anglican in La Democracia traveled to Belize City this morning to sit the English and Science papers.

 

Linda Williams

Linda Williams, Std. 6 Teacher, St. Agnes Anglican

“We have our regular classes but then what we do is that we have Saturday classes to help the children and we have morning classes also to help them to prepare today for their P.S.E.”

 

Isani Cayetano

“Since the beginning of the academic year back in September, I know preparations have been ongoing in terms of leading up to today.  Though you feel as if though your students were ready to be able to sit this first leg of the exam?”

 

Linda Williams

“Well I would say to the best of their ability, yes.  To the best of their ability because, you know, each person performs at their own level.  So, to the best of their ability, yes sir.”

 

Jamal Samuels, despite attending as many extracurricular sessions, still found the P.S.E.s somewhat challenging.

 

Jamal Samuels

Jamal Samuels, Student, St. Agnes Anglican

“Eena wahn way ah neva like really ready right, but seka my teacher, like how she had di Saturday classes and the morning classes ih let you gain more then, to like sit both exams.  So to me the exams like it was a little challenging.”

 

Isani Cayetano

“Now in terms of how well you think you have performed in the exams, do you think it’s good enough for you to get a pass?”

 

Jamal Samuels

“Yeah, I think so but, I think it will be good for me to get a nice grade, a pass on both of them.”

 

According to the Director of the Examinations Unit, Nelson Longsworth, the two-part exam sees examinees completing multiple choice questions, as well as letter and creative writing.

 

Nelson Longsworth

“This is Day One and on Day One the two subjects that they will be sitting would be English and the Science papers.  The English paper has two components, a written component and a set of multiple choice questions which we refer to as the paper one.  The written component which tends to be the more challenging is where the students are expected to write, do two pieces, write to pieces.  One would be a letter where they would choose from two choices: one of the two would write a letter and the second writing which is a narrative, they would have like from four different stimuli they would be asked to, they’ll pick one and then they’ll write a story.”

 

Shery Kahsie August

Shery Kahsie August, Student, All Saints Anglican

“I believe that I did a pretty good job.  The only thing that kinda gave me trouble was the English Paper 2.  Altogether it was easier than I thought it would be.  I’ll tell the truth, I was kind of nervous this morning but it was really easier than I thought it would be.”

 

Isani Cayetano

“How much time did you invest in studying after school or what have you to get yourself ready for today?”

 

Shery Kahsie August

“Well like my mom would take me up sometimes in the evenings and I would go to Saturday classes and we would just, I would study all the time and we spent a lot of time in the evenings.  Like me and my mom would be doing or studying the past PSE papers and doing it in my textbooks and we did a lot of studying really.”

 

This year, the Cayo District fielded more candidates than Belize District.  Corozal fielded the least with nine hundred and two students signing up to take the P.S.E.s. Reporting for News Five, I am Isani Cayetano.

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