Students yet to learn exam results

On the verge of the 2021 academic year, the Ministry of Education has left the nation’s school students nervously awaiting the results of national examinations as marking continues. 

The National University of Samoa’s (N.U.S.) Vice-Chancellor, Professor Alec Ekeroma, told the Samoa Observer he was still awaiting advice from the Ministry about the pass rate.

The university requires the examination results for students who have sat the Samoa School Leaving Certificate (S.S.L.C.) in order to start enrolling in the upcoming Foundation and Technical Vocational Education Training (T.V.E.T.) students.  

He told this newspaper that the Ministry of Education, Sports and Culture (M.E.S.C.) has said the university will receive the results prior to enrolment commencing on 25 January 2021.

Professor Ekeroma said because S.S.L.C. exams were held on the second week of last December, marking was yet to be completed. 

“We’re looking forward to welcoming our new and continuing students the week of the 25th,” he said. 

Efforts by the Samoa Observer to get a comment from the Chief Executive Officer of the M.E.S.C., Afamasaga Dr. Karoline Afamasaga-Fuata'i, via email were not successful on Tuesday. 

The N.U.S. schedule for the 2021 academic year states that it will open on 4 January 2021. Monday 25 to Friday 29 January will be enrollment week for Semester 1.

Foundation Science classes for the coming year will begin on 26 January. Whereas Monday 8th of February will be the beginning of semester 1, lectures.

According to a previous statement issued by the Education Ministry, a total of 1690 out of 1825 students qualified to enter N.U.S. programmes.

From the total number of qualified students, 1007 made it to through to N.U.S. foundation studies and 683 for T.V.E.T. programmes.  

In 2019 there was a slight drop in students’ examination pass rate to 55 per cent compared to 2018, in which 58 per cent of students were deemed to have passed.

But given all the hardships incurred in 2020, a further decrease could be expected, stated the M.E.S.C.

The M.E.S.C. had recognised the importance for students to be creative, critical and analytical thinkers.

In 2017, the national examinations were reviewed to ensure that this was being addressed in their format and the weighting of test items. 

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