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87 Per Cent of Students Placed in Schools of Choice

Eighty-seven per cent of students who sat the Primary Exit Profile (PEP) this year, have been placed in one of seven schools of their choice.

Minister of Education and Youth, Hon. Fayval Williams, made the disclosure during a press conference at the Ministry’s offices in Kingston on Friday (July 8) ), ahead of the release of the results of the exams later in the day.

Starting at 4:00 p.m., parents can visit the online parent portal to access the results or call the Educate Jamaica helpline at 888-338-2283 and 888-724-8463 for assistance. Regional offices are also prepared to support schools and parents where necessary.

A total of 35,292 students sat the examinations, which means that 30,778 students were placed in a school they listed as one of their preferences.

“Thirteen per cent, or a total of 4,494, were placed in high schools in close proximity to the primary schools they attended or to the home address that they would have submitted on the exam,” Mrs. Williams said.

She noted that 20 students were not placed in a public school at the secondary level, based on their requests.

Cautioning against making comparisons between the performance of students this year versus previous years, Mrs. Williams reminded that the 2022 cohort of students did not sit the grades four or five components of the examinations, “so everything hangs on the grade six PEP due to the continuing pandemic”.

From a total of 1,054 examination centres across the island, students sat the Ability Test in March and the Curriculum-Based Test in April. They did not sit the Grade Six Performance Task.

“We had to go further as a result of the impact of the pandemic on learning, to make adjustments in the content coverage for the achievement or the curriculum-based component of the tests, which comprises mathematics, science, social studies, and language arts,” the Minister said.

A total of 36,078 candidates, comprised of 18,495 boys and 17,583 girls, were registered to sit the examinations. Two per cent, or 786 students, reported absent on the days the tests were administered.

Minister Williams reiterated that the examinations aim to assess the skills and competencies as outlined by the National Standards Curriculum.

“A major goal of [this] is to enable students to become critical reflective thinkers, creative problem-solvers, effective communicators, and natural collaborators,” she said.

When accessing the results of the exams, parents will receive a report card, which will present a score that is a composite of the curriculum-based and the ability tests. This score was also used to place the student in a secondary institution.

Since 2015, two additional school choices have been added to the standard five that were given to parents and students in the past. These two additional choices were selected from a cluster of schools that were within a 10-mile radius of the primary school the student attended.

The Minister also reminded that currently, every student in Jamaica, who is graduating from a primary school has a place in a high school.