Sat | Dec 15, 2018

Don't worry - Green says every GSAT student has a place

Published:Friday | March 23, 2018 | 12:00 AMSyranno Baines/Gleaner Writer
Gary Hutchinson giving his daughter Rihanna some words of encouragement before the start of yesterday's sitting of the Grade Six Achievement Test at St Aloysius Primary School in Kingston.

Junior Education Minister Floyd Green has urged the more than 39,000 students completing the Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT) today, along with their parents, not to lose sleep over the results.

He assured them that there is a space for every child across the education system. This, he says, as the education ministry has embarked on a programme to raise the profile, level, and quality of every secondary institution.

Green, who, yesterday, visited the Hope Valley Experimental School to deliver words of encouragement to students sitting day one of the two-day examination, opined that it is becoming less important which school children attend.

"We (the ministry) are ensuring that we pump the resources especially into those schools that have challenges," Green told The Gleaner. "They have been our focus for the last two years and will continue to be the focus because we understand that the pressure from the parents and students comes because they feel the outcome of the child is directly tied to the institution that they attend," Green said.

To this end, the state minister argued that success would depend on the attitude that the child takes into the institution, and, important, the support from parents.

"We have countless stories about children who've gone to non-traditional high schools that have done way better than children that have gone to traditional high schools," asserted Green.

"And when we check those stories, it's largely because the support from parents is consistent and the student always had an attitude of self-belief that they will do well," he concluded.

The GSAT has been administered annually in all primary-level institutions since 1999. The GSAT will be replaced next year by the Primary Exit Profile, the education ministry said.

syranno.baines@gleanerjm.com