Jerome Reynolds, Gleaner Writer
The Jamaica Teachers’ Association (JTA) has welcomed news of the impending review of the Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT) saying it is long overdue.
Education Minister Ronnie Thwaites has indicated that an overseas consultant is to be brought in to review the placement examination.
According to JTA President Paul Adams, GSAT has a raft of shortcomings.
He says the curriculum is too heavily content-based, and the time frame allotted for the test is too short.
Adams says the re-evaluation of GSAT should include cutting some of the subjects covered in the exam, more focus on Jamaican history and culture, and an emphasis on analytical skills.
Adams says the education ministry should take this opportunity to review the other assessment examinations at the primary level to ensure harmony in the education process.
Meanwhile, at least one headmaster has joined the JTA president saying the re-evaluation of the GSAT curriculum is critical.
Principal of the Kensington Primary School, Carlene McCalla- Francis, says the workload is burdensome to students.
The Education Ministry is to spend $10.3 million to hire an overseas consultant to review the GSAT.
The overseas consultant is expected to work with a local team to conduct the review some time before July this year.