EDUCATION Minister Anthony Garcia yesterday said his ministry has decided to publish the 2019 Secondary Entrance Assessment (SEA) examination results.
The results will be released on June 28. But Garcia said parents who do not want their children’s results to be published must inform the ministry of this in writing. In a subsequent statement, the ministry said with only six working days left until the release of results, requests for non-publication, that were not previously submitted, cannot be facilitated.
Chief Education Officer Harrilal Seecharan added that from next year, parents will have the option to have their children’s results published or not as part of the SEA process. They made these statements at a news conference at the ministry’s office on St Vincent Street, Port of Spain.
Garcia said SEA results have been published for many years. The results were also broadcast on the radio in the 1960’s and 1970’s. But he observed that concerns such as transparency, privacy, right to publish and established best practice have been raised by stakeholders, regarding the release of SEA results. In April, the Sanatan Dharma Maha Sabha threatened to take legal action against the ministry if it went ahead with its proposal not to publish SEA results. At that time, Garcia said the publishing of SEA results would be discussed. Garcia said he received letters from some education stakeholders which indicate the ministry should take a very close look at the issue. He said the suggestions were both for publishing and not publishing.
“We could not close our eyes to these concerns,” Garcia said. After holding extensive discussions with parents, teachers and other stakeholders, Garcia said the ministry sought legal advice.
This advice, he continued, was subsequently referred to Attorney General Faris Al-Rawi. “We wanted to make sure that whatever we did was in compliance with the law.” After doing all of this, Garcia said the ministry was “confident and comfortable” about publishing the results. He said parents who do not want their children’s results to be published must submit a written request to the ministry. Of the 18,000 children who wrote this year’s SEA, Garcia said the number whose names are not being published is “miniscule.”
He also said this year’s SEA exam was brought forward to relieve the pressure on ministry officials and principals regarding student registration. He said principals have complained about having to organise registration on the last week of school, after the SEA results are made available to them. This year’s exam was held on April 4. Last year’s exam was held in May.
Seecharan reiterated Garcia’s view that there is no legal barrier to SEA results being published.
Seecharan said reasons such as matters before the Family Court or the children being in protective custody, have been attributed to some children’s SEA results not being published. From 2020, Seecharan explained the option to publish a child’s SEA result or not, will be an option “from the point of registration.” He said this will become part of the ministry’s normal placement process.
This story was originally published with the title "SEA results on June 28" and has been adjusted to include additional details. See original post below.
The results of the 2019 Secondary Entrance Examination (SEA) will be published on June 28.
EDUCATION Minister Anthony Garcia made the announcement at a news conference at the ministry's office on St Vincent Street, Port of Spain, on Monday.
Garcia said parents who did not want their children's results to be published could advise the ministry of this in writing. He said the number of parents making this request was miniscule.
Chief Education Officer Harrilal Seecharan said as part of the registration process for next year's SEA, parents will be formally given the choice as to whether they want their children's results to be published or not.