Zimbabwe News and Internet Radio

Govt suspends continuous assessment of pupils

By Abigail Mawonde and Audrey Rundofa

Government has suspended the controversial continuous assessment regime for Ordinary Level and Advanced Level pupils that was meant to start this year. Under the regime, O-Level and A-Level pupils were expected from this year to be graded on the basis of combined marks for continuous assessment and final examinations in keeping with provisions of the updated education curriculum.

Professor Paul Mavhima, the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education
Professor Paul Mavhima, the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education

According to the new rules, pupils who would have failed examinations were required to supplement within two years, after which one would be forced to go back to class if failing persisted.

The new education framework for O-Level and A-Level says learners’ grades will be based on 40 percent theoretical examinations, 30 percent practical examinations and 30 percent continuous assessment.

Speaking at the launch of the first batch of the new curriculum framework textbooks at Dunnolly Primary School in Seke District yesterday, Primary and Secondary Education Minister Professor Paul Mavima said: “We, for this year’s examination classes Form Four — O-Level and Form Six — A-Level — have suspended the continuous assessment regime.

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“So, we will use terminal examinations for these classes. Let me also indicate clearly that we have for now suspended the whole issue of tasks. A full report on the continuous assessment regime will soon be made available, but I also want to make it clear that we have a team that is working on the evaluation of the entire updated curriculum.”

Minister Mavima said the new curriculum had its strengths and weaknesses and needed attention.
“We know its strengths, we know what it is good for, but we realised some of the trepidations that the education sector has had with regards to the new curriculum,” he said.

“We want to implement it, especially the good aspect of it, but we want to make sure that as we do so, we do it in a manner that is rationalised and palatable to our sector so that we can achieve what we want, while everyone of us is pulling together so that we can indeed transform the education sector in Zimbabwe.”  The Herald