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May 20, 2020

Education Minister Patrick Faber Agrees C-SEC Exams Should Be Held in July

The Caribbean Union of Teachers on Tuesday went on the offensive, vehemently registering its concerns over the decision to hold C-SEC examinations in July. The CUT says the decision to do so puts students and teachers at risk during the COVID-19 pandemic. The decision was made earlier this month by the Caribbean Examination Council. The regional body says that it had written to the Registrar of CXC informing them that its members were vehemently opposed to the July exams. Among other things, students have been staying at home and have not been preparing thoroughly for the exams. While the Belize National Teachers Union supports CUT’s position, the Ministry of Education is all for holding the exams in July as opposed to September. Minister Patrick Faber told the media today that after a survey was conducted among secondary schools, the decision was made to support the CXC in holding the exams in the next two months. 


Patrick Faber

Patrick Faber, Minister of Education

 “The decision of agreeing to with the rest of COHSOD and I remind people that the decision of COHSOD comes when there is at least a two third majority. As a two third majority we agreed on going at the start of July. We even said that a few of the exams will probably happen in the last couple of days in June and we would go with that schedule. That did not come out of the sky for Belize. In fact when we made that agreement it was after doing a survey with the secondary schools. So I know and I don’t like pick a quarrel, but the B.N.T.U. quite often pushes itself much further than it ought to. We have a situation n this country where these exams are needed. Many of our young people rely on these exams for the sake of getting their tuition scholarships, getting jobs, getting into universities and higher level institutions in this country. The Ministry is tasked in making policy and making these decisions and without picking a quarrel with the B.N.T.U. that is exactly what we intend to do. So for me the larger issue of contention today is what the regional COHSOD body of CARICOM is going to decide ultimately. I  believe that decision was finalized sometime but as you heard me say it seems that may well be still up in the air and I hope we can get some resolution on that. But I will say that in terms of the July date that the majority of our member states of CARICOM agreed to, it works well for Belize given the current situation.”

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