The Director-General of the Ghana Education Service (GES) Kwesi Opoku Amankwa has revealed that the 2021 West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) has been scheduled for the month of September-October this year.
The initiative, he explained, is to enable teachers and students to recover the contact hours lost as a result of schools being closed down during the pandemic.
According to the Minister, the estimated number of lost hours is about 1,701 hours.
“We have brought out the all-year calendar and what we took into consideration. The main concern was the contact hours for those who will be writing exams. Our calculation for the period they stayed home till the period that they will write their exams would be about 1,701 hours,” he said.
This comes on the back of President Akufo-Addo’s announcement of the reopening of schools for academic work to continue in his 21st address on measures to mitigate the impact of Covid-19 last Sunday.
Speaking at a press conference on Monday, Mr Opoku Amankwa revealed that if SHS final year students write the WASSCE exams in May-June as it was before, students will have covered only 980 hours out of the total 1701 hours.
In the same vein, Mr Opoku Amankwa mentioned that if students write in August-September 2021 as they did in 2020 due to the Covid, then they will cover 1520 contact hours and be short of 181 hours which may affect students in capturing all their courses.
This deficit, however, will be covered and over should they write in the months of October-November.
By then the students would have received a total of 1880 contact hours of study, giving them 180 extra hours before they write their final exams.
Although this arrangement is ideal for the students, it presents a challenge to WAEC, as they would have to mark and release exam results for early admission to take place in January.
As such, the September-October timeline for examination, per GES Director-General, is most suitable for both teachers and students to make up for the lost contact hours.
“Per our calculation, we have proposed September-October, we noted that we would have covered 1700 hours so we will only be short of 1 hour contact period,” he stated.