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CXC analysing COVID-19 impact on exam candidates


CARIBBEAN Examinations Council (CXC) Registrar and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Dr Wayne Wesley says the entity will give further consideration to the novel coronavirus pandemic’s impact on students sitting external exams during the grading process.

He noted that CXC will take into account “the likely psychosocial impact [of the pandemic] on students’ performance to ensure that they are not disenfranchised”.

This, Dr Wesley said, is in addition to other concessions the council has already put in place, he said while addressing a recent CXC virtual media briefing on the administration of this year’s regional external examinations.

Dr Wesley said efforts will continue in terms of working with the Government of St Vincent and the Grenadines to ensure that their candidates are not disenfranchised as a result of the volcanic eruption in that country.

Additionally, he said certain challenges being experienced in other countries will also be taken into consideration.

Consequent on the pandemic, the strategy for the 2021 regional examinations has been revised to include delaying the start of the Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE) and Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) examinations which will now begin on June 28.

The results are to be released between the last week of September and the first week of October.

Further, all components of the exams — Paper One and Paper Two as well as Paper Three for private candidates — will be administered; students have until today to defer sitting the 2021 examinations; and the deadline to submit all school-based assessments has been extended to June 30.

Dr Wesley said these decisions were agreed on during a special council meeting on May 25, following consultative engagements with governments and other regional stakeholders.

He said this was done to garner wide-ranging inputs to ensure there was proper planning for the regional examination “that will redound to the benefit of the majority, if not all, within the region”.

“The council believes that these decisions are made in the best interest of our stakeholders across the region, [including] our teachers, our parents, our students, and our ministries,” Dr Wesley stated.

Additionally, he said CXC will continue to engage and collaborate with all stakeholders “to ensure that there is equity and fairness for all candidates, that the integrity of the regional examinations remains intact, and that the health and well-being of our stakeholders remain paramount”.

— JIS

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