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General News of Tuesday, 22 June 2021


WASSCE 2020: 70% pass in mathematics questionable – Educationist raises concerns

Education Minister, Dr. Yaw Osei Adutwum Education Minister, Dr. Yaw Osei Adutwum

Lecturer at the Institute of Distance Education under the University of Education-Winneba, Counsellor Daniel Fenyi, has raised concerns about the 70 percent pass in the core mathematics paper recorded in the 2020 West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE).

According to him, such a pass is questionable especially in a period where the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted the educational system.

“If you understand the educational system, you will know that it is questionable to record this kind of pass, especially as schools were closed because of the COVID-19 pandemic. So it will take a lot of political manipulation to record a 70 percent pass in Mathematics.”

He argues the position that students used the technology available to them to study and adequately prepare for their WASSCE whilst at home is a sound one but, “with all the examination leaks recorded during the period, I doubt that happened. The examination leaks helped the children pass their exams. They circulated the ‘apor’ on social media.”

The educationist stated that the actions of students after their integrated science paper make it look like the government sponsored the ‘apor’ of the students. “We remember students destroying school property, verbally assaulting the president and their headteachers after their ‘apor’ for the science paper failed to drop.

"Imagine the government had not given them ‘apor’ after the first paper and students wrote the other papers without the ‘apor’. If that happened, the students wouldn’t have recorded a 70 percent pass in the Mathematics paper.”

He added that suspicions that past questions acquired for students were likely exam questions was right. “I have examined the 2013-2018 past questions given to the kids before their WASSCE exam and I realized they were the same. The government even had no place in acquiring past questions for students in the first place.”

Prof. Jane Naana Opoku-Agyemang, a former Education Minister in the NDC administration, who also was running -mate for the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) in the 2020 elections, has discredited the 2020 WASSCE results, suggesting that there was mass exam cheating by the students.

She doubted how the students were able to pass the exams in the wake of what she described as ineffective teaching and learning amidst alleged widespread leakage of the exam papers, asking Ghanaians not to celebrate it as a success.

“We heard of the leakage of the exams, we heard of invigilators being compromised, we heard many things, and we also saw the students come out and speak about, ‘this is not what we were told will happen’, now these students have As, and we are happy? It is up to us,” she pointed out.

But Education Minister, Dr. Yaw Osei Adutwum says these assertions should be ignored because they are meant to score cheap political points to run down the New Patriotic Party’s (NPP) flagship program.