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  • Minister of Education, Hon. Rev. Ronald Thwaites, is urging schools to use the profile of students’ performance at the Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT) to address areas of weakness.
  • Rev. Thwaites was speaking at a press conference held at the Ministry’s National Heroes Circle headquarters in Kingston today (June 17), to provide details of students’ performance in the 2015 GSAT.
  • He noted that thorough analysis of these reports will provide “more ammunition” to the Ministry in its work to improve student achievement.

Minister of Education, Hon. Rev. Ronald Thwaites, is urging schools to use the profile of students’ performance at the Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT) to address areas of weakness.

“The detailed information about how a child did at GSAT needs to be carefully analysed and used by everyone,” the Minister said.

Rev. Thwaites was speaking at a press conference held at the Ministry’s National Heroes Circle headquarters in Kingston today (June 17), to provide details of students’ performance in the 2015 GSAT.

He noted that thorough analysis of these reports will provide “more ammunition” to the Ministry in its work to improve student achievement.

The Minister said this information could serve as a boon, not only for worried parents, but for teachers of grade seven “who need to know what students’ strengths and weaknesses are in a particular subject and therefore be able to correct that.”

Senior Advisor to the Minister, Radley Reid, agrees that more emphasis needs to be placed on students’ GSAT results profile in order to remedy deficiencies and improve student output.

“On the results paper for each child, there are six sub-profiles in all of the subject areas. For instance, in Maths it will tell you geometry, algebra, numbers. So right away you can know what are the weaknesses or the strengths, not just of the class, but of every individual student,” he explained.

He noted that this report, which is made available to the exit school, receiving school as well as the students, can be used to prepare the next set of GSAT students.

“So, those profiles can be used very effectively to correct weaknesses. I am encouraging schools in particular (to) pay very close attention to these profiles. If we are going to have improvement, we must know where our strengths are and more so the weaknesses, so we can correct them,” he said.

The results, which became available today, show an improvement in performance in four of the five subject areas.

Social Studies recorded the highest percentage increase of six percentage points above last year’s average; followed by Communication Task, three percentage points, with Language Arts and Science showing marginal increases.

The performance in Mathematics, however, decreased by 3.7 percentage points.