JIS News

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  • Thirty-nine thousand, five hundred and sixty-one students at the grade-six level are registered to sit the second staging of the Primary Exit Profile (PEP) examinations, which begin today (February 25), with the administering of the Ability Test.
  • Deputy Chief Education Officer with responsibility for the Students Assessment Unit in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Terry-Ann Thomas-Gayle, told JIS News the Ministry is satisfied that everything is in place for the national exams.
  • “Based on feedback on the ground, we would have used the data from last year’s administration of PEP and we would have gone into those schools that we saw, based on the results, where they had issues on the test and we would have assisted in areas of weaknesses,” she said.

Thirty-nine thousand, five hundred and sixty-one students at the grade-six level are registered to sit the second staging of the Primary Exit Profile (PEP) examinations, which begin today (February 25), with the administering of the Ability Test.

Deputy Chief Education Officer with responsibility for the Students Assessment Unit in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Terry-Ann Thomas-Gayle, told JIS News the Ministry is satisfied that everything is in place for the national exams.

“Based on feedback on the ground, we would have used the data from last year’s administration of PEP and we would have gone into those schools that we saw, based on the results, where they had issues on the test and we would have assisted in areas of weaknesses,” she said.

“The good thing about PEP is, we are not just getting the score about the student; we are getting an entire profile, so from the results, you’re able to see the exact category of weaknesses, whether or not the student has a problem with problem-solving, whether or not they are able to communicate in Language Arts and Mathematics, across the different subjects, and so the targeted approach is much better,” she said.

Mrs. Thomas-Gayle further pointed out that the necessary measures have also been put in place to accommodate students with special needs.

“We do have a Special Education Unit and we would have given them special accommodation, which is done after a psycho-educational assessment is submitted,” she noted.

“And, we have special accommodation, such as writers, prompters, extra time, and I want to point out also that… our students with special needs… are specially placed, so our special education officers would know the students within the schools who are [wheelchair users], and who have certain learning challenges,” she said.

Mrs. Thomas-Gayle is reminding students that the Ability Test looks at reasoning verbally and quantitatively.

“So, that exam is not aligned to the National Standards Curriculum. The students need at least a grade-four-level exposure to the school system to acquire those items,” she said.

The other components of the test, such as the Performance Task in Language Arts and the Performance Task in Maths, are set for March 19 and 20, respectively.

In the meantime, Mrs. Thomas-Gayle is imploring parents to be supportive as the students have been adequately prepared and are ready.

“I want to assure our parents that our students are ready, the students are ready for PEP and I want you to just encourage your child, ensure that the child gets to rest before the exam; we want you to have conversation because the more the child talks about what is being learnt, the better it is for them to represent it on paper,” she said.

“Encourage your children to read the questions carefully because the answers are there, do not rush because there is adequate time to complete all the assessments, so they do not need to rush to finish and just sit there,” she added.

PEP is the series of tests that have replaced the Grade Six Achievement Test as the national high school entrance examination. It is designed to sharpen critical thinking skills and is intended to provide a more complete profile of academic performance. PEP forms part of the Government’s New National Assessment Programme and will be administered annually in grades 4, 5 and 6.

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