Send exam level children to school
-Ministry urges parents

Stabroek News
May 11, 2003

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Chief Education Officer, Ed Caesar is appealing to parents of children preparing for examinations, especially those piloting the Level Two (Prep B) exams next month, to send their children to school.

At the same time the Guyana Teachers' Union (GTU) in a release issued on Friday said that contrary to propaganda, there had been no settlement or terms of resumption signed with the Ministry of Education in relation to the teachers' strike.

The union said that the education ministry did not call out the teachers on strike action, "therefore they do not have the authority to say to you that the strike is called off."

At an Education Ministry press briefing on Friday, Caesar said head teachers of primary schools "are saying very clearly they are prepared to work with teachers and Grade Two children" in spite of the current strike.

He said that while head teachers and some deputies and teachers were in schools awaiting their charges, the children mainly in Georgetown and Linden were not showing up. He appealed to parents to assist their children to be prepared for the level two diagnostic tests.

He said the examinations, being piloted with the help of CARICOM, were important in determining the weaknesses of students.

He said that due to the strike action he was also concerned with the completion of School Based Assessments (SBAs) for the Caribbean Examinations Council exams. Prior to the closing date for the submission of SBA's schools had made every effort to complete them but two had experienced some difficulties, Caesar noted.

Teachers have also sought assistance from the ministry to complete the SBAs. He was concerned that at one leading secondary school in Georgetown all the teachers were present to complete their SBAs but the students had not been attending.

Students preparing for the CXC are currently on study leave so they may be at home or at school revising their work.

The schools affected were mainly in Georgetown and Linden but based on a report from Linden, Caesar said that teachers were working with Prep B children there.

However, he cautioned that not all Grade Two teachers were present at schools in Georgetown.

Assistant Chief Education Officer, with responsibility for the Georgetown Education Department, George Gilgeous said the department was trying to ensure that children preparing for examinations were taught regardless of the industrial action.

He said in relation to preparation for the Level Two exams the department had found that of the 32 primary schools in the city, teachers at five schools were not working; 16 had Prep B classes and some other classes; five had other classes other than Prep B; and six had teachers but pupils were not present. (back to top)

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