This year will mark the first time that the Caribbean Examinations Council’s (CXC) CSEC and CAPE results were released to the various Ministries of Education and candidates across the region, simultaneously.
Minister of Education, Technological and Vocational Training, Santia Bradshaw, made the disclosure during her address at the official presentation of the 2020 examinations results at CXC headquarters, this morning.
She said this move was in an effort to allow candidates to access their results in a timely manner so they could “engage the institutions of their choice, immediately, to complete their matriculation”. The exams took place from July to August.
“This year, due to the challenges associated with the administration of examinations, the later than usual release of the 2020 results and the need to accommodate many students who are eagerly awaiting their results for matriculation into tertiary institutions regionally and internationally, the CXC is moving away from its established practice of releasing results to the Ministries of Education in the region prior to the release to candidates,” she stated.
The Education Minister lauded the regional examining body for meeting the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic head on with “innovative, visionary and astute leadership”.
She said whereas other countries across the globe cancelled high stakes examinations and international examining bodies opted to award grades based on teacher predictions due to the pandemic, CXC took a different approach.
“The Caribbean Examinations Council was bold enough to introduce a Modified Approach. In the modified approach which was adopted by CXC, an unprecedented step was taken to revise the examinations strategy with a view to ensuring that candidates would be awarded valid grades through the assessment of critical competencies while minimising the potential disruption of the education system. Throughout our discussions, it was clear that the sole intent of CXC was to maintain and preserve the integrity of the examinations.
“For those of you witnessing this event who were not aware of the adjustments made by CXC this year, I wish to share that candidates were primarily assessed on their performance in the Multiple Choice Paper, Paper 1, which was used as a common paper for all candidates and the School Based Assessments (SBAs) or the Alternative to the SBA for private candidates. In other words, with the exception of Modern languages, Human and Social Biology and Visual Arts at the CSEC level, candidates did not have to write the traditional Paper 2 this year,” Ms. Bradshaw explained.
The Minister added that while this approach raised concerns in some quarters, CXC addressed any potential deficiency by improving its quality assurance measures. This was done through an expanded moderation process, she pointed out, which was conducted across all centres and subjects to ensure “the validity and reliability of the examination process was maintained”. Ms. Bradshaw noted that the final grades awarded today across the region were mostly based on the moderated SBAs and multiple choice papers. She added that the modified approach was decided on after “extensive” consultations with key stakeholders, including governments and teachers’ unions.