Tanzania: Govt Concerned Over Poor Evaluation Tests

THE Ministry of Education, Science and Technology has expressed concern over evaluation tests given to pupils and students in both public and private schools, saying some of them add no value to academic progress.

This was said by Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, Dr Leonard Akwilapo. He said the ministry was considering stopping exaggerated evaluation tests.

Speaking during a two-day annual general meeting organised by the Christian Social Services Commission (CSSC), he said: "In some schools, pupils and students are subjected to weekly tests even at weekends." CSSC had raised concern that there were too many tests of dubious nature.

The PS said the ministry was aware of the tests and was currently engaging experts in and outside the ministry to weigh on whether to suspend or improve them.

Dr Akwilapo was of the view that improved academic performance among the pupils and students in schools was a result of quality teaching and learning.

He hailed CSSC for considering using information and communications technology among other means to improve teaching in nursery and primary school pupils.

He assured it that the ministry was ready to work with CSSC to enhance teaching and learning in public and private schools in the country.

CSSC supervises about 1,223 education training institutions involving 404 nurseries, 268 primary schools, 373 secondary schools, 50 seminaries, nine teachers' training colleges, 96 vocational training centres and 22 higher learning institutions.

CSSC Executive Commissioner Peter Maduki told the PS that schools under the Roman catholic had used assessment tests organised with help from the National Examination Council of Tanzania (Necta).

He said the exams were organised in every zone involving both primary and secondary schools. "Unfortunately, there has emerged an explosion of tests in some wards and districts whose quality are questionable," he said.

He urged the government to revisit the tests and reduce the frequency to pave the way for pupils and students to learn.

He explained that the meeting was strategically organised to bring together experts from the ministry and that of regional administration and the local government charged with supervising the education sector.

CSSC hopes the meeting will provide a platform to discuss opportunities and challenges facing the sector of education including discussing better ways to adopt ICT in teaching and learning.

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