The 2012 Junior Certificate Examinations results have been received with hostile overtones as many parents blame the seemingly poor performance on the education system.
The Botswana Examinations Council announced that a paltry 40 % of the 38 000 students who sat for the exams obtained Grades A to C, while only 5 students obtained merit. In view of these depressing statistics we sought a cross-section of opinions from members of the public and this is what they had to say:
“The results are shocking and very disappointing. It’s a disaster, a national crisis and the BDP government must treat it as one. A commission of enquiry must be set up as a matter of urgency.
The vision 2016 pillar of an educated and informed nation will remain an illusion. It’s a pie in the sky and minister Moitoi and President Ian Khama must take the blame and address the nation on this matter.”
“These are the worst JC results ever and as BOFEPUSU we believe that the education system is to blame for not putting the necessary structures in place when implementing the new syllabus.
These students are the first products of the new syllabus but they were so unlucky in that no induction was done for the teachers and no new material was provided for the new syllabus.
The poor students are basically half-baked products who were introduced to the new system under very poor working conditions.
They are products of a very dysfunctional system that was put in place by a demoralized work force.
There was lack of political will to improve the working conditions of the teachers and it’ll be disastrous to allow the situation to continue. Something has to be done.”
“First as teachers we have to look at our weaknesses and how it contributed to the failure of students rather than putting all the blame on the kids.
I would say, we as teachers are really pulling at a low pace following unsatisfying teacher welfare and other pending issues in the teaching arena.
The Ministry of Education and Skills Development does not appreciate, motivate and recognise teachers accordingly. We still, as the community, want to forget the impact of that industrial strike.
The action left a big scar in teachers hearts in particular and I want to assure you that ‘go slows’ are evident in the work place with unfinished syllabus coverage at the end of the year.
On the other hand children’s rights have become excessive and the abuse of social media especially Facebook does not help the situation. Parents also need to be more proactive in their children’s education.”
“To be honest, I don’t like the new system. They should have stuck to the old syllabus instead of subjecting the students to something the teachers were not ready to implement.
It doesn’t make sense and it was so unfair to the students. It’s so shocking and unbelievable that only five students in the entire country managed to get a merit!”