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Jun 13, 2016

Ministry of Education Explains P.S.E. Results

Nelson Longsworth

The Ministry of Education today spoke of the results.  Head of the Exams Unit, Nelson Longsworth, who annually would crunch the numbers and track improvements in the exams, says that when compared to 2015, the results were similar. While students improved in composition and letter writing, they didn’t score well in the comprehension and multiple choice English paper. Science and Social Studies saw slight improvements, but Math results are substandard. Longsworth explains.

 

Nelson Longsworth, Head, Exams Unit, Ministry of Education

“The 2016 P.S.E. results is showing quite little changes over 2015. We see small improvements in English, which was expected because the written paper; the teachers who marked it did say that they are seeing better writing narrative and letter writing. We saw far less NRs which are the no response. So that is telling you more children are being better prepared for that paper. But on the average when you combine the multiple choice paper which is loaded with comprehension questions, you see where it is averaging out where the performance remains somewhat the same. The math area; it continues to be one of the biggest challenges within our system. We continue to see where children struggle to solve problems. The paper two, which is the problem solving paper, continues to be poorly done; more than half our children will get a failing grade on that paper. So it is just a matter of continuing to figure out where we need to intervene and how we can turn the tables around. So at the end of the day; I think for Social Studies a small improvement, but that fluctuates from year to year up and down. So that’s what we’re see with these subjects. I wouldn’t want to be in a position to tell you what needs to be fixed or else we would have fixed it already. It’s definitely a multidimensional approach that has to be used. We are looking at making sure that teachers are fully trained and that’s one of the initiatives we are pushing. We are also looking at improving teaching at the level where we have a big project. We are moving towards getting schools to improve in those areas—English and math more specific—and there are other initiatives, but these will take time. I don’t think you can turn around…when you are testing the curriculum that spans the entire primary school eight years, it is hard to say in one or two years, you will see these large improvement. So I would say it will take some time. I am sure we are moving in the right direction. We need to continue measuring yearly and I am sure that as these initiatives take root, performance will improve.”

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