Students from private schools have once again dominated the Top 1% in the Grade Six Assessment Examinations but Minister of Education Priya Manickchand does not believe that should serve as an indictment on the public school system.
The Top 5 positions were grabbed by students who attend private schools but the Minister does not believe anyone should get carried away with those figures. In an interview with News Source, Ms. Manickchand said cautioned that not all of the private schools are doing well and even for those who may have students in the Top 1%, there needs to be a closer examination of the school’s overall result.
On Friday, just after releasing the results to the national media, the Education Minister found herself taking a tour of some of the private schools in the city as she offered to present the good news herself to the top performers.
She said “I don’t think you should just look at it like that. For the private schools, some of them have done very poorly, they are not anywhere in the top 1%, not even top 100 children and in these private schools, not all of them have done well”.
Over the past decade, Guyana has seen a number of new private schools being opened. The Education Ministry has been making moves to regularise many of them as many parents opt to transfer their children from the public schools to the new private schools although some have high fees attached to them.
The Minister of Education is proud of the public school system and said it is interesting when you look at the results for the private schools. “You may have a class and just a quarter of that class is doing very well and sometimes the entire rest of the school is doing very poorly”, she told News Source.
She explained that it must be understood that Guyana’s children are doing well, regardless of whether they go to private schools or public schools and that is what needs to be celebrated at this time.
A preliminary examination of the 2013 National Grade Six Assessment results has found that students are performing better in Mathematics when compared to previous years. The results have also found male students improving on their performances, and doing better in the main subjects.
Sixteen thousand, eight hundred and eleven students wrote the Grade Six exams during the Easter season. They would have been previously assessed at the Grade two and Grade four levels.
The Ministry of Education explained that a percentage of the marks gained at the Grade Two and the Grade Four Assessments was combined with the marks gained at the Grade Six Assessment in order to determine the candidates’ overall scores.
Five percent (5%) of each candidate’s Grade Two score in Mathematics and English, and ten percent (10%) of the Grade Four score in the same subjects, were added to eighty-five percent (85%) of each candidate’s score in those subjects. The combined scores in Mathematics and English were added to the scores gained in Science and Social Studies.
FILED: 9th June 2013