Ed­u­ca­tion min­istry con­fi­dent PEP will im­prove stu­dent out­comes

Jamaica Gleaner - - NEWS - Ro­mario Scott Gleaner Writer

WITH ONLY a year left be­fore the Min­istry of Ed­u­ca­tion re­places the Grade Six Achieve­ment Test (GSAT) with the much-an­tic­i­pated Pri­mary Exit Pro­file (PEP), the prepa­ra­tion for tran­si­tion is on in earnest, and fur­ther de­tails have emerged on how stu­dents will be tested, graded and sub­se­quently placed in high schools.

Ed­u­ca­tion Min­is­ter Sen­a­tor Ruel Reid, speak­ing at a Gleaner Ed­i­tors’ Fo­rum at the news­pa­per’s North Street of­fices in cen­tral Kingston last week, said he has in­ter­ro­gated the sys­tem and is so far pleased with the progress the min­istry has made in prepa­ra­tion for PEP.

He said fur­ther train­ing of teach­ers and school ad­min­is­tra­tors would get un­der way soon to pre­pare them for the new dis­pen­sa­tion of the Pri­mary School Exit ex­am­i­na­tion, which com­mences in 2019.

It means that cur­rent grade four stu­dents will be the first co­hort to sit PEP.

SWEEP­ING CHANGES

Part of the sweep­ing changes the min­istry has dis­closed is a shift in the ex­am­i­na­tion pe­riod from March to May, and there will be an in­tro­duc­tion of short-an­swer ques­tions to com­ple­ment mul­ti­ple-choice ques­tions which are now solely pre­sented to stu­dents.

Reid de­clared: “The change is not just go­ing to be a name ... .

“It is in­tended for it to be a bet­ter prepara­tory mech­a­nism for stu­dents mov­ing into the sec­ondary sys­tem to make sure we have bet­ter out­comes,” Reid said, adding that the PEP will shift the sta­tus quo of stu­dents re­gur­gi­tat­ing to de­vel­op­ing crit­i­cal and cre­ative think­ing skills.

FILE

Cen­tral Branch All-Age School stu­dents. Min­is­ter of Ed­u­ca­tion Ruel Reid.

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