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Help on the way for retained students

Support mechanism is in the pipeline for the 129 Grade 6 students retained at primary schools, this year.

According to Minister of Education and Human Resource Development, Hon Emmalin Pierre, commencing this August vacation, her Ministry will expand programmes, aimed at helping these students gain entry into a secondary at their next attempt.

During Tuesday’s media briefing, Gertude Niles from the Adult and Lifelong Learning Unit admitted that it is noteworthy that “…for many years we have not been doing anything to address this issue.” Therefore, she commended “the Minister for her initiative and for putting members of her team in place to ensure that a programme is developed to help students gain access to secondary education.”

She explained that “The intention is to work initially with that cohort and have an engagement with both students and parents to ascertain what the issues are re that child’s particular issue relative to why they did not attain that grade level to go unto secondary school.”

After this, Ms Niles said an intense 6-month programme will be rolled out, working systematically with the students via districts to engage them in a “non-threatening environment.”

Noting that historically the Ministry has retained students at the primary level due to their performance on the Caribbean Primary Exit Assessment (CPEA) and formerly the Common Entrance, Minister Pierre said “The Ministry of Education is not comfortable about this and at the same time we are not comfortable just sending every child to a secondary school without the support system that will ensure that these students are able to succeed.”

She added, “…We want to give the commitment to the public that we are going to change this forever.”

Testing and Measurement Officer, Johnell Mitchell told the 25 females and 104 males retained students “that there is still hope.”

He said, “You have another opportunity to write the exam [next year], so don’t believe that all is lost and that’s the end for you. [Further] with structures being put in place, we are hopeful that in time to come, we would have zero retention of any student in our primary schools.”

1,743 students (884 males and 859 females) were assigned to a secondary school throughout the State of Grenada.

Due to the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, Grenada was unable to

accommodate students for the sitting of the external component of the Caribbean Primary Exit

Assessment (CPEA). Therefore, the CPEA internal assessment scores and the Minimum Competency Test

(MCT) Grade 5 scores were used to assign students to a secondary school, in a ratio of

2:1, respectively.

The 2020 internal component of the CPEA officially commenced in September 2019, while most

of the present cohort wrote the MCT on June 12th, 2019.

The Grade 6 assignment was based on the following:

• CPEA Internal Assessment (67% of total score)

• MCT (33% of total score)

Features of the internal assessment include:

• Project

• Book Report

• Writing Portfolio

• Self-assessment

• Practice in “Can-Do” Skills: English, Mathematics, Science and Civics

• Teacher-made-Test in English, Mathematics, Science and Civics

1,872 students (988 males and 884 females) were registered for the Assessment in 2020.

In 2019, 1, 949 students were registered for the CPEA; 1,011 males, and 938) females. However, 1,799 students were assigned to secondary schools.

Meanwhile, though Ministry of Education has stated that each school has received its student quota for the year, parents/guardians requesting transfers are advised to download the transfer form either from the Ministry of Education’s website (education@gov.gd), Facebook page (facebook.com/moegrenada/), or request the form via dceoexams@moe.gov.gd or email the principal of the primary school where your child is registered.

Completed forms along with the evidence documentation for the transfer, are to be emailed the to dceoexams@moe.gov.gd with signature by July 10, 2020.

A panel will review the transfer requests and respond electronically by third week in July, 2020

The grounds for transfer requests are as follows:

a. Change of residency of parents after the submission of placement forms (Parents MUST submit supporting documentation)

b. The school has accommodation and special arrangements for physically challenged students via ramps, transportation, etc. (Parents MUST submit supporting documentation)

c. Instances of social issues with severe psychological effects on the child being at this school. Please note that original documentation (s) signed by a medical practitioner, education consultant, or psychologist MUST accompany the transfer request.

d. After the above considerations, should space be available, any other special circumstances will be taken into account.

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