2011 GRADE NINE AND TWELVE RESULTS: A STEP IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION
Friday, October 14, 2011
For the pasts years, there had been countless complains and counter accusations in the country concerning unpleasant results our final year pupils in both upper Basic and Senior secondary schools.
This had eventually ignited lot of discussions concerning the trend of the final results which were not previously known in the country of which our education technocrats and others viewed that the economic and human development of this country may plunge into a ditch if rescue methods are not device as soon as possible.
Our able reader would agree with us that no single nation can develop on all aspects without quality and genuine education among its citizens.
When a country provides quality and accessible education to all, the awareness of its people improves significantly and the standard of living of people in the country changes immensely and earns a country infrastructural and social developments.
All sectors in education were invited to participate in decision making from the grass root to the top echelon of the government to come up with a right and decisive actions in order to avert such distasteful results in our schools.
Parents are blaming schools, and the schools are blaming policies and its goes on and on. However, learned people had rubbished accusations of the massive fails in schools, instead of rather investigate the problem holistically and come up with lasting solutions to restore the distorted quality of education in the education system.
After vigorous sensitisation and consultations, 2011 finalists having been examined by West African Examination Council (WAEC), had made improvements over last year’s results over most subjects examined in the Gambia.
We encourage the intending and liable candidates for 2012 to maintain and further improve on this year’s results as The Gambia government and Ministry of Basic and Secondary education had planned. Gambia Teachers’ Union and other players in education are all battling it out in their own way to make a difference.
It was our fervent desire to have discussions with the best students of the both WASSCE and GABECE but due to circumstances beyond our control, we were unable to talk to those pupils but managed to talk to two candidates who were 2011 candidates.
The first student we had discussion with is one Theresa Mendy, a science student From Sifoe Senior Secondary School Kombo South, West Coast Region. There she got eight solid credits out of nine subjects entered for at WASSCE and had a failed only one subject, which is Mathematics.
The eighteen years old girl, who was born and bred in Sifoe Village, had expressed her regret to this reporter for having failed in mathematics. As the best candidate ever produced by the school since inception of the school six to seven years ago, Theresa who lost both parents some years ago, commended her brother and sister for raising her up and showing her the bright side of the life even though they are very poor.
She had also dedicated special thanks and appreciation to his Excellency the president of the Gambia, Professor Dr. Alhagie Yaya A. J. J. Jammeh for the support given to her during the periods of her basic and secondary education through PEGEM and all those who were behind the project to uplift the status quo of the girls education in the country.
Theresa’s ambition is to go to the University of The Gambia and study medicine. Due to appalling health conditions we are experiencing in the third world countries, Miss Mendy is aspiring to undergo medical training and put her weight behind this noble field.
Theresa used this opportunity to advice her fellow females. “Those going to senior schools should focus more on their books and limit, if not avoiding the attendance of trifle activities after school in order to make a difference in education. Giving more time to books is the only magic behind every success in academia.
Parents should also buy learning materials for their school going children instead of buying unnecessary worldly materials for their girl child”, she concluded. For those who had completed, she cautioned them to continue battling it out in pursuance of education so that they can contribute to development and the progress of their mother land and not to think of marrying now.
Education in depth was reliably informed that the first in Gambia at WASSCE level came from “Gambia
Methodist Academy,” with nine (9As).In addition, four pupils from Nusrat Senior Secondary each pulled a total of eight (8As). This is a giant step towards the revitalization of quality education in our schools.
In the same vein, twenty-one pupils from upper basic came up with aggregate six and five of those came from Gambia Methodist Academy.
We were told that the MOBSE had awarded scholarship to all those candidates in order to motivate them to do more in their Secondary education. Out of those, we had a short discussion with one of them who identified himself as Ousman Jallow.
According to Ousman, though not a surprise for him to pullout aggregate six but he was anticipating between aggregate eight and twelve. “I have really worked for it through out with the support from my parents in the morning, afternoon, and in the evening”.
One Haddy Jallow, who happened to be an aunt to Ousman, had expressed her satisfaction of the performance of Ousman in 2011 GABECE. As a professional teacher, she had asked pupils to concentrate on their books, maintain discipline and respect both in school and at home in order to yield such results.
As schools are doing their utmost best to register best and competent candidates, WAEC at the other end is making chaos. We all understand the economic conditions of this country and at the time that WAEC exam fees are paid, most parents have difficulty to pay everything and schools go into negotiations to enter their children of which the school pays the exam fees for all their candidates who were late or having difficulty to pay.
For these two years, WAEC had issued cards to students at a cost of D100 to access their results while they owe their schools. This increases bad debts for schools year after year and the development of schools are also at stake as the government through MOBSE can do all those petty- petty development works for all the schools and other miscellaneous expenses.
As partners in development and progress of education in the country and in the sub region, WAEC should not look into the monetary gain to inflict injustice on schools. They do not allow children to do exams and pay later, so why should they create inconvenience for schools. Do unto others, as you would like others to do unto you.
Author: By Janneh S Darboe