JIS News

The Ministry of Education takes the safety of our students very seriously and as such has taken steps and is taking steps to ensure their physical safety, psychological health and emotional wellbeing.
Concerns have been raised about sittings of the CSEC and CAPE examinations. The Ministry has no authority to reschedule the Caribbean-wide examinations, which are organized and administered from CXC headquarters in Barbados. We have had and are having discussions with CXC given the present national situation and are trying to minimize its impact on those of our students sitting exams during this period of a state of emergency.
The Ministry is working to ensure that none of our students are negatively affected in the long term. CXC has explained that it cannot reschedule the regional examinations and that if students are unable to sit on their appointed date they have two options. (1) They can resit next year at the appointed time or in a supplemental and the MOE will cover the examination fees. (2). They can opt to have a score awarded based on averages of an examination paper that was sat and the school based assessment (SBA). If the students are to sit a supplemental examination this cannot happen before January. The Ministry is awaiting word from CXC on this and other matters.
The Ministry has transferred students sitting examinations in schools and/or examination centres affected by violence to alternative examination centres not affected by violence.
Counselors have been placed at examination locations, to which students from affected areas have been assigned.
The Guidance Counselling Unit of the MOE has organized a meeting with leaders of various agencies, including the Victim Support Unit, the Dispute Resolution Foundation (DRFY), the Early Childhood Commission (ECC), the Child Development Agency (CDA), the Offices of the Children’s Registry and Advocate (OCR, OCAY), the Grace and Staff Foundation, UNICEF, the Violence Prevention Alliance (VPA), the Peace Management Initiative (PMI), the Council of Churches, ODPEM and the Red Cross, to coordinate a response and provide trauma counselling in the affected schools and communities as soon as it is safe to do so.
We are asking parents / guardians and families to answer their children’s questions thoughtfully and objectively – not answering their questions will likely escalate their fears.
When possible let children return to their normal activities. Encourage them to play with their friends. Let them listen to their music of choice. However, they need to be PROPERLY SUPERVISED during these activities.
When possible encourage your children to put their thoughts and concerns in writing and drawings and use those as springboards for discussion. Should issues such as the use of excessive gun images, images of rampant bloodshed and/or excessive sadness, arise out of the children’s writing/drawings and discussion they likely warrant further support, please contact the Ministry of Education’s Guidance and Counseling Unit or any of the above NGOs for assistance. You may also call the following numbers at any time to speak with a counsellor: 458-7754 351-4519 700-6072 583-4618 292-3267 410-6276 799-7256 292-3274

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