JIS News

Parents of Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT) students who have not been registered, are being urged to make applications for their children’s birth certificates by October 29.
This has been reinforced by the Registrar General’s Department (RGD), and comes in the wake of a statement released by the Ministry of Education, Youth and Culture on October 13, advising that no student would be allowed to sit the GSAT without presenting a copy of his or her birth certificate.
The deadline for GSAT registration is November 30, 2004 and the Ministry is strongly urging those parents who do not have birth certificates for their children to take the necessary steps to apply for one, well in advance.
Deputy Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the RGD, Bryan Aikman told JIS News that parents could make the deadline by submitting their applications using one of three options – the ordinary, seven-day or express service.
“If they apply via the ordinary service by October 29, we will ensure that they are printed and delivered to them by November 25. However, if they apply in November, then they will have to make use of our seven-day service initially. As it gets closer to the month, they will need to use our express service, which is more expensive,” he said.
Customers should submit as much information as possible, including the name of the hospital, place of birth, mother’s name (maiden name if married), father’s name, the child’s date of birth, as well as the birth registration number.
“For those parents conducting record updating activities, we are advising that they come in by the end of this week, or early next week, in order that they can be printed by November 25,” he said.
Record updating is done in cases in which registration was not properly completed, such as a missing name; therefore, they would need to do a late entry of name or late registration.
In this case, the RGD is depending on family members to give information on the name of the child and to provide evidence that the child goes by the name.
Parents of students from the parishes of St. Catherine and Clarendon can be facilitated at the RGD headquarters in Twickenham Park, St. Catherine.
Persons residing in other parishes are encouraged to make their applications and direct questions to the RGD regional offices nearest to them.
Applications may also be submitted online at the RGD’s website, www.rgd.gov.jm.
According to the Education Ministry, over 4,000 students did not submit copies of birth certificates prior to the sitting of the March 2004 GSAT.
In that case, parents were allowed to register students without birth certificates, on the condition that they present the document before the sitting of the examination.
However, 3,862 students still had not presented their birth certificates even after the sitting.
To date, information received from Region 1 (Kingston and St. Andrew and Western St. Thomas) and Region 6 (Clarendon and St. Catherine), reveal that 829 students are yet to submit their birth certificates.
As a policy, students are required to show proof of age in order to be admitted to primary and secondary schools.
The Ministry is advising that there will be no concession for the March 2005 GSAT.

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