Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Easy, breezy exam


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IT?SEEMS that many came, saw and conquered the Barbados Secondary Schools’ Entrance Examination (BSSEE), commonly referred to as the 11-Plus Exam, yesterday. 
Many claimed to have breezed through the English paper and were of the view that even if the mathematics paper was more of a challenge, it was easier than last year’s. 
A total of 3 811 students, comprising 1 955 boys and 1 856 girls, sat the three-hour test at 22 secondary schools across the island. 
Senior education officer in the Ministry of Education, Glyne Price, told the MIDWEEK?NATION there were few administrative or organizational alarms for education officials yesterday.“It was a walk in the park. There were no major hiccups; it was a day relatively free of challenges. There were few queries or questions about the exam papers. The exam went smoothly. 
“There were a few students who complained of headaches and stomach cramps, but it’s a high stakes exam and those [reactions] may have resulted from nerves,” Price said.
“I have heard reports that the maths was easier this year, but only time will tell. The results will tell whether it was easy or not,” he added, also indicating that the marking of papers would start on Monday. 
It should take about four days for the near 250 mostly primary school teachers to complete the marking of the papers. The ministry also reported that deferrals were granted to 117 of the 128 students on whose behalf such requests were made. 
Leah Arthur, the daughter of former Prime Minister Owen Arthur, took the exam at Harrison College while Kobe Kojo Marshall, the son of former Attorney General Dale Marshall, wrote his papers at Lester Vaughan. 
“He was pleased with his performance and relieved that it is all over,” Marshall said of Kobe, who attends St Gabriel’s. 
Over at The St Michael School, NIFCA?award-winning poet Rickardo Reid flashed a big smile for his mum Cheryl and sister Cheryl. Reid was confident he will be heading to Combermere next school year. 
Another George Lamming student, Chanice Leacock, the daughter of former national hockey players Venslough Leacock and Corlette Kellman, said she was a shoo-in for Queen’s College. “The maths was easier than the English. I was going to lessons so I was well prepared. The exam was a breeze,” she said. 
People’s Cathedral student Jonathan Waterman, the son of national bodybuilder Richard Waterman, told his mum Micheline he was heading to Queen’s College. “I should score close to 100 in maths. I am happy with my performance. I know I am going to Queen’s College,” he said. 
Joshua White of St Cyprian’s Primary, who was met by his mum Beverly Belgrave and stepfather Patrick Ward, said the English was easy and his eyes were on Foundation.
Former Barbados rugby player Ricky Morris said his son Ramon Phillips had done well enough to make it to The St Michael School while Keon Belgrave assured his parents Ricky and Lisa Belgrave that he was “all right” and the exam was easy.Last year 3 686 students sat the exam. 


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