Liberian Vice President Jewel Howard-Taylor has proposed to the Ministry of Education (MoE) to adjust the timing in administering the West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE), so that students would have ample time to enrol at tertiary institutions.
“The exams are given very late, and by the time the results are out whether it is WASSCE or any exam, students have already missed the deadline for entrance tests at universities and colleges. Maybe we can go back to basics and have the exams taken in March so that before the school year ends students are aware of their positions,” she explained.
Madam Taylor emphasized that it is expected that in the second semester, after these exams have been done, students should be able to apply for university entry because they would know that the results qualify them for college.
Making remarks at the observance of National Flag Day over the weekend at the Centennial Memorial Pavilion in Monrovia, VP Taylor said, the Ministry of Education should look at the timeliness of the exam, especially for students who are in the 12th grade.
She noted that what is happening is that students who are graduating now barely make it to college because of the time they consume in writing their exam, pointing out that if the Ministry keeps waiting for the last minute, graduation will still be taking place in August and September, wherein students should be in tertiary institutions, instead of roaming the streets, especially the ones who made excellent marks in the just-ended exams.
Meanwhile, Madam Taylor asserted that there is a need to re-introduce civics education in schools, adding that “it is a vital part of any democracy, and equips ordinary people with knowledge about their democracy and constitution.”
She added: “Civics education teaches us what we as individuals can do to protect and support our democracy and also makes us understand our role and responsibility as citizens.”
At the ceremony, WASSCE duxes were awarded by the Ministry of Education for their excellent performances in the 2019 WASSCE to inspire them to continue their educational pursuit for higher education.
Additionally, parents of WASSCE duxes and schools that performed excellent in the parade were also awarded.
Presenting awards to the duxes, VP Taylor stated that President George M. Weah has ensured that the best performers of the WASSCE will pursue their studies through the support of the government.
The President of the Senate thanked the young people who were part of the process for following the rules because there is dignity in labor, adding that “if you work very hard, you will be able to accomplish your goal because those who are successful work hard and follow the rules.”
In remarks, Deputy Education Minister for Instruction, Alexander N. Duopu, assured that the ministry is re-introducing civics education in this academic year, while announcing that Liberia came third place in mathematics in the WASSCE and the 13 students who are the duxes, passed with credit in both Math and English.
The 13 duxes came from eight schools, including College of West Africa, Light International School, Mildred Taylor Academy, St. Martin’s Catholic School, St. Peter Claver Catholic High School, Calvary Chapel Mission School, Seku Ibrahim Sheriff High School and William Booth High School.