Reps to FG: Exempting Nigerian students from WASSCE will create confusion in education sector
The house of representatives committee on basic education and services says the federal government’s decision to exempt Nigerian students from participating in the West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) will create confusion in the education sector.
This was disclosed in a statement issued on Friday by Julius Ihonvbere, chairman of the committee.
The federal government had announced on July 6 that schools across the country could resume in order to allow students participate in the WASSCE scheduled to commence on August 4, 2020.
However, on July 8, Adamu Adamu, minister of education, announced a reversal of the decision to reopen schools, and exempted students in federal government colleges from participating in the examination.
According to the statement titled, “WASSCE Should Not Be Cancelled”, the lawmakers said stakeholders were not informed beforehand on the decision.
“The House Committee on Basic Education and Services received with amazement the announcement by the Honourable Minister of Education that Nigerian students would not be participating in the forthcoming WASSCE examinations,” the statement read.
“He did not inform the country if this was in agreement with other West African leaders or in consultation with the examination bodies, the state governments and other stakeholders in the education sector.
“The Minister did not also inform the public if the decision was the outcome of a meeting with all State Governments that are in charge of all but the Unity Secondary Schools that are owned by the Federal Government.
“This sudden policy reversal is not good for the country. It is bound to create further confusion in the education sector, create disappointment and suspicion among parents, frustrate the students, and show to our development partners and Nigerians that the distortions and disarticulations in the sector are only getting worse.
“The reversal also shows that our policy makers may just be adopting a laid-back approach to the need to confront the novel coronavirus rather than taking proactive and creative steps to manage and contain it.”
Ihonvbere, who noted that Nigeria is not the only country expected to write WASSCE in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, urged the government to increase the number of invigilators and work out an agenda for the provision of COVID-19 protocols and fumigation of classrooms.
“The original plan of opening hostels for boarding to facilitate so-called revision classes should be cancelled immediately and the students should come from home, write the paper and disperse immediately,” he added.