Education Minister Anthony Garcia said his ministry will not sit idly by and let students float through the education system.
Garcia was speaking to the media during a news conference on Friday at the ministry, St Vincent Street, Port of Spain.
He was referring to the fact that the registrar of the Caribbean Examination Council (CXC) said 11,000 students throughout the Caribbean failed to achieve a passing grade in the exams in 2018. Garcia said after the ministry did its investigation and analysis, it transpired that 1,400 of these students were from TT government and government-assisted schools.
“We have private students, private secondary schools, government and government-assisted schools. When you look at students in government and government-assisted schools, over which the ministry had jurisdiction, 1,400 students did not attain a pass in any of the subjects in the Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC). “We are concerned about that, but for 2018 we are very happy with the overall performance of students who surpassed the performance over the last eight years and that is significant,” he said.
There were several reasons why some students did not get passes, he said, which included socio-economic problems, where there was no strong family system, and he wanted to see this figure reduced drastically. When parents were involved in the teaching system, students tended to do better at their studies, he said.
This year, 21,520 students sat CSEC in 33 subjects. Of these 55.18 per cent (11,875) were females and 44.82 per cent were males. There were 110,133 subject entries, an increase from 109,273 entries in 2017.
Passing grades (I, II and III) were obtained in 67.66 (74,511) of the subject entries, a small improvement over 66.78 per cent in 2017.
This year 60.78 per cent of students who sat CSEC were successful in five or more subjects.
The students who attained five subjects including English and maths made up 54.7 per cent, an improvement of 4.27 per cent from 2017.
Garcia said there was a vast improvement among boys obtaining five and more subjects including English A and maths.
He said the ministry had implemented a school-based management to create a culture to promote better teaching in schools, though this was a work in progress.
“Mathematics is an area we continue to work on.”
The Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE) results continued to be excellent, Garcia announced, with an improvement in performance and 95.31 per cent of students receiving a passing grade.In 25 subjects students scored 90 per cent, the best results in ten years.