MoE warns against graduation before exams’ results
Deputy Education Minister for Instruction Alexander N. Duopu has said that results for this year’s West African Examinations Council Senior School Certificate Examinations (WASSCE) will be released on July 5.
Henceforth, Mr. Duopu said, all graduation-related exercises should be held after that date, and noted that the ministry will impose heavy fines on schools having thanksgiving services and graduation ahead of the July 5 date.
Duopu made the disclosure yesterday at a news conference the ministry hosted in Monrovia.
WASSCE is a type of standardized test in West Africa. It is administered by the West African Examination Council. It is only offered to candidates residing in Anglophone West African countries.
Minister Duopu warned that any violator/s that would graduate students in the absence of WASSCE’s result would be fined, and that the fine would hurt such schools to the extent that those falling in such category by defying the regulation would no longer function as schools.
On the other hand, he said schools will not be permitted to graduate students who failed the Senior School Certificate Examinations, but will allow the failed student/s to re-enroll the next academic year, “because there will be no more re-sitter’s exams.”
Mr. Duopu has meanwhile warned school administrators to withdraw clearances they issued to prospective graduates in the absence of the WASSCE results or face the consequences.
He called on schools’ administrators to immediately refund parents’ US$60 WASSCE fees they earlier paid for each senior student prior to the time government shouldered the responsibility to pay the fee.
Duopu disclosed that the government underwrote the cost of the exams, and therefore threatened that schools that would not refund the money to the parents would risk losing their permit to function.
He said the ministry has resolved that no County Educational Officers or District Education Officers will issue permit to establish new schools; rather, only authorities at the central office in Monrovia.
He said individuals wanting permit for the establishment of new schools should visit the MoE, not the offices of the CEOs or the DEOs.
In a related development, Education Minister D. Ansu Sonii has threatened to dismiss principals whose students would fail WASSCE.
Sonii told reporters that principals of schools that would have all its candidates failing the 2018/2019 WASSCE should either resign or be purged out.
He said principals will lose their posts because the failure of all of their students at the exam is a sign of “weak and poor supervision.”
According to him, it is the duty of the principals to ensure that students are properly taught the required materials, noting they need to ensure that teachers who do not come to classes are punished.
He said the ministry is taking the result of the WASSCE very seriously, and that when students failed, it is the school and its principal and teachers who failed.
Minister Sonii said students need to be encouraged to be studious because, according to him, starting next academic year, students who failed the WASSCE will not be allowed to do re-sitter.
“They will have to wear uniforms and repeat the 12th Grade the next academic year,” the minister said. He also said that the ministry would reintroduce national exams for six graders and during the 2019/ 2020 school year would do the same for 3rd graders.
Sonii said the move is intended to strengthen students at the primary level, while preparing them for the senior high school certificate exams.