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Don't be alarmed at PEP mock exam results, urges education minister

Friday, December 07, 2018

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KINGSTON, Jamaica — Education Minister Ruel Reid is urging educators, parents, students and stakeholders of the Primary Exit Profile (PEP) to remain calm about the mock exam results they received; as they represent only a percentage of the total score students will receive after sitting the actual examinations as of 2019.

“The mock was administered on one component of the PEP, that is, the Performance Task, which accounts for 20 per cent of the total assessment,” the minister said at the ministry's quarterly press conference, held on Thursday at his offices in downtown Kingston.

“The Ability Test and the Curriculum-Based Test (CBT) will account for the remaining 30 per cent and 50 per cent, respectively. Therefore, it is unreasonable, premature and a knee-jerk reaction to view the June 2018 Mock Performance Task as an indication of what will happen when the actual assessments are done in 2019. It is to be noted that the Performance Task and the Curriculum Based Test are based on content/curriculum material covered in grade six,” he noted.

“The same will apply where the Performance Task, to be administered in June 2019 to grade-four and -five students, is concerned. Grade-four students will be assessed on what they would have covered at grade four, while grade-five students will be assessed on the basis of content covered in grade five,” the minister explained.

He added that the ministry and other examining bodies have no general practice or tradition of reporting on mock or pilot assessment results; therefore, there was no need to publicize the details of the mock exam, it being only a per cent of the overall score.

“Just for transparency, we did so, and as it turned out we should have perhaps had a session where we explain where the grading was going to be. Rather than that, we put them out there and people have their own interpretation,” he said.

The minister also noted that the three levels or performance categories in relation to June's Mock Performance Test, which is Standard Met, Standard Nearly Met and Standard Not Met, are not the same rubric/scoring/reporting scheme that will apply in respect of the actual examinations slated for 2019.

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