Showing posts with label Grade 8 Examinations. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Grade 8 Examinations. Show all posts

Is removing Grades 8 and 10 exams a mistake?

The PNG Education Ministry and Education Department are embarking on a 10-year plan to address the growing number of students at schools and reduce the cost of educating them. 

First, let's be reminded of the past lessons:

Remember the curricular and education structural changes - SBC to OBE to SBC, and the 6-4-2 to 2-6-4 to 1-6-6?
These changes were unnecessary and a waste of time and money; and have long-term dominoe effects.

PNG Grade 8 and 10 exam results
Read my post-graduate work on Education and Development in PNG.

What is changing?

The education department has already planned to phase out - remove - the Grade 10 and 8 exams and introduce what is called National Education Quality Assessment Testing

The details of this test are not clear. In fact, no one knows how to carry out this kind of large-scale assessment. It has never been done successfully at Grade 8 and 10 levels, how the Education Ministry and Education Department are going about it is sketchy. 

It is exactly the repeat of past years - the blind (Edu Ministry) leading the dumb (Edu Dept). Sorry to say this, but not sorry it's true.

Again, the PNG politicians, education ministers and senior education officials just need to look back and see the mistakes in the last 20 years (yes, in their lifetime) so that they do not repeat the same mistakes.

In this important change, the students will continue to Grade 12 without taking the normal/external exams in Grades 8 and 10. There'll be only 1 exam in Grade 12.

Changes are good but why change an assessment that works fine? 

  • Just imagine if the SBC was not changed in 1992/1993. The PNG education curriculum would have been far better than it is today.
  • What would the education structure be like if the 6-4-2 was not changed to 2-6-4?
Obviously, no one would be talking about changing them back if these changes have not taken place 25 years ago.

The two points are wishful thinking. The damage has been done. But we know there were people (Papua New Guineans in Politics and Education circles) who did not have the brain to say:

 'NO LET'S NOT CHANGE WHAT IS WORKING. LET'S IMPROVE IT'.

Is removing exams a mistake?

Removing examinations at Grade 8 and 10 is going to shake the foundation of the Education System in PNG, no doubt. 

The PNG govt and the education advisors have got it wrong in the past. The 6-4-2 to 2-6-4 to the proposed 1-6-6 structural re-adjustment is one example of an unnecessary change. Another example of an unnecessary change in the curriculum change we saw lately, SBE to OBE to SBE.

There are many other changes that should not have happened in the FIRST PLACE. Removing a perfectly working examination at Grade 8 and 10 is a case of destroying what works well. 

As a country, we do not want to continue with it for some years and regret it.

Why remove exams at Grade 8 and 10?

The main reason is that the PNG govt cannot effectively conduct exams - it just costs too much. Furthermore, there are too many students in schools dropping out at Grade 8 and Grade 10 - the govt wants them to have a Grade 12 education. 

However, these are not good reasons to remove examinations (external assessments) and instead opt for classroom-based assessments. 

THIS CAN BE THE WORST MISTAKE!

You see, this kind of assessment will save the govt money, but it is not as effective as it is intended to be. At present, the education department cannot rely on the internal assessment marks schools sent to Waigani.

They need the external assessment which is the Grade 8 and 10 exams.

Exams and Assessments

The parents and stakeholders need to know that the education department does *not* have to remove the exam and replace it with another assessment called National Education Quality Assessment Testing

Both can work side by side. 

There are already these kinds of literacy and numeracy (L&N)  assessments at Grades 3, 5 and 7: in the Pacific this assessment is called PILNA; in PNG there is an assessment called CSMT; and in Australia, they have what is called NAPLAN. 

These are broad-based  (literacy and numeracy competency) assessments that run alongside the main examinations.

Though these external L&N assessments are different in design and purpose, they are fundamental pillars of measuring learning. 

Therefore, removing one and replacing it with another IS NOT the right thing to do!


What you can do?

This change will affect you and your children in 20 - 50 years time. You have a responsibility to share this message and make sure everyone knows what is happening.

Talk about it now.

We cannot wait 20 years to realise it's too obvious and change things back.

Classroom assessments are NOT Exams


PNG Education Ministry and Education Department are terrible at making changes. This change - removing Grades 8 and 10 exams - should be considered carefully.

All in all, the reasons for removing the exams do not justify the need to continue with the exams at Grades 8 and 10.

Exams are pillars of a 'sustainable' education system.
__//__
Comment and share your thoughts about the planned removal of Grade 8 and 10 exams.

Grade 9 Selection List for 2022 High and Secondary Schools

Many parents will be wondering about the final Grade 9 selection list for 2022. It can be a struggle to find out, especially if you do not know who to ask. 

Here is some information about the selection of Grade 9 students to high and secondary schools in PNG. It gives details of the Grade 8 exams, exam results and Grade 9 selection.

Grade 11 selection info and updates


Grade 9 Selection in PNG

The Grade 9 selection is based on the students' internal marks (school-based) and external marks (examination marks). Grade 8 Students wanting to go to the top secondary and high schools must do well in both internal and external assessments.

It is important to understand that, though the Grade 8 examination is set by the National Department of Education in Port Moresby, the Grade 8 examinations and Grade 9 selection is decentralised to the provinces in the country. Hence, the running of the exam and selecting students to Grade 9 is done at the provinces, by the provincial education board in collaboration with heads of Primary Schools.

Recommended: Read about the Grade 11 selections and PNG Tertiary Institutions selections


Provincial Education Board & Grade 9 Selections Lists 2022

The education officers, in collaboration with headteachers and Grade 8 teachers, in the provinces are in charge of: 

  • exam security, 
  • conducting and marking the exams, 
  • quality-checking the Grade 8 exam results,
  • selecting students to Grade 9, and 
  • reporting to the Education Department.

Provincial Examination Supervisor (Grade 8 PES)

The key person in the province responsible for the smooth flow of the Grade 8 examinations is the Provincial Examination Supervisor (PES). The Grade 8 PES is a national education officer, as the inspectors and Guidance Officers, but based in the provinces. 

The PES liaises with Measurement Services Division matters pertaining to exams, students school data, conducting of exams, reporting on exams and gives feedback on exam-related issues.

Grade 8 Examinations in Primary Schools

The following examinations are taken at Grade 8 students at the end of Primary Schools:


Grade 9 selection 2021


Grade 8 Certificate of Basic Education Examination (CoBEE)

Every Grade 9 student in the country should have a Certificate of Basic Education Examination (CoBEE). Many provinces have failed to issue the CoBEE. If you a parent/student from one of these provinces, demand that your children get the certificate. It is an important achievement.

Some people thought that CoBEE was not necessary because of its limited uses. However, wouldn't it be right for the Grade 8 students to celebrate 8 years of Primary School education with an award? 

Like the other certificates of merit, the Grade 8 certificate marks a milestone in a child's education journey. Each province, and provincial education board in the country, should prioritise this award and issue the certificate to Grade 8 school leavers. 


Grade 9 Selections to Secondary Schools 2022

Potential Grade 9 students can check their Grade 8 exam results at the provincial education office. Usually, the PES and Headteachers have access to the final results.

Parents should go through the schools/headteachers if they want to address any exam-related queries. The schools will raise their concern with PES and get an answer for them.

As mentioned earlier, PES is the key person in the province. He is the 'glue' that binds the Grade 8 exams results and Grade 9 selection - the go-to person - in the provinces.


New Grade 9 Students' Placement for 2022

In some instances, many secondary schools and high schools have feeder schools. The system allows for Grade 8 students to transition to Grade 9. Such transition (the Grade 8 to Grade 9 transition) makes it easier for parents to find out if their children have continued to Grade 9, or not.

Some top high and secondary school principals prefer the best Grade 8 students in the province. If you know that your child does well in the Grade 8 examination  (and is not selected to the local high school), check with the top secondary schools in the province. The schools may have picked him/her.

Parents and citizens in NCD, Central, Morobe and other main centres will have difficulty finding out their children's Grade 9 placement for 2022. The best place to check is the provincial education office. Ask for the Grade 8 PES or the chairperson of the Provincial Grade 9 Selection Committee and speak to them calmly. They will help you. 

Leave a comment below in regards to this article if you have questions or wish to add value to this discussion.


About PNG Insight

PNG Insight is an education blog. It aims to highlight the key developments in the education sector in Papua New Guinea. Started in 2014 on Google's blogger (now self-hosted on WordPress), PNG Insight strives to be a platform for critical thinking and discussions; and a source of information.

You can follow us on Twitter (@PNG_Insight) for the information on Education and Development in Papua New Guinea.