Last week thousands of students sat the second portion of the Primary School Examinations. They sat the Math and Social Studies papers. On average, students have difficulty passing the Math and Science papers satisfactorily. But does the PSE grades play a role? Some high school uses PSE grades to accept new students while others do not. President of the Belize National Teachers Union Senator Elena Smith told Love News that high schools should not use the PSE results to accept students.
Elena Smith, BNTU President: “Some schools do use the exam as a way in sifting some students from their school and so they would want to pick the cream of the crop because you know some schools are more scores focused or results oriented whereas some other schools tend to look at what it is that they offer and how these children would fit into what they offer. I don’t- for us we don’t believe that the PSE should be the determining factor in whether that child attends a certain high school because we keep saying that education should be for everybody, its right a child has and so the moment you do something so that that child no longer has the same opportunity as the other children, that child is being disenfranchised and so we don’t feel like that the PSE results should be used as the determining factor for a child to enter a certain high school. As long as the child has completed his primary school level and he is able to move on then the child should be able to go to whichever school the child would want, that would be the reality, that is not so because again as I said schools want to get results, schools want to get awards for getting the most CXC passes and that kind of thing so they will pick students who they know can push them to get to those levels. I hope that we can get to a point where children are not placed in schools based on which primary school they come from or the grades they get but they are placed in a schools so that all schools across the board are offering the same thing so that every child doesn’t matter where they go they will be able to accept.”
Approximately seven thousand, one hundred and ninety-nine Standard Six students sat the PSE this year.