Gulu Launches Probe In To Years of Poor PLE Performance

4750 Views Gulu, Uganda

In short
As the Primary Leaving Examinations get underway across the country tomorrow, the authority in Gulu district will be counting their luck to have finally discovered a solution to years of poor results in the exams.

The authorities in Gulu district will be  counting their luck for having finally discovered a solution to years of poor results in the exams, as the PLE kick off on Wednesday.

Were Brias Abraham, the Principal Gulu Core Primary Teachers College, said that preliminary reports of an investigation into the poor performance by the district in the primary leaving exams over the past years show that most schools have not been completing the syllabus. He said learners only cover between 30 to 38 percent of the core subjects on the syllabus by exams time.

Were said the findings also indicate that most schools hardly follow the timetable and only teach core subjects such as mathematics, English, Social Studies, Integrated Science and Religious Education. He also accused the head teachers of neglecting their administrative functions such as examining teacher preparation, tracking learning and teaching and ensuring that teachers spend more time at task.

He said most head teachers only stop at approving the scheme of work presented by teachers, but do not labor to establish how well the work is done.

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Grace Amito Aget, the head teacher of Gulu Core PTC Demonstration primary school explained that she has experience that the teachers do not cover the syllabus, subjecting learners to shun questions outside the areas they have covered. She added that coupled with domestic demands, most learners fail to concentrate thereby making them unable to effectively respond to the exam questions leading to poor performance.

She also blamed parents for failing to provide writing materials for their children.  Amito further blamed the ministry of education for inadequate and irregular disbursement of funds to schools making it difficult to procure instructional materials that could be used by the teachers.

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A June 2011 report by UNITY - USAID project on Measuring Learning Achievements said pupils in Gulu and Kumi district scored lowest mainly in language and mathematics over the last four years compared to other districts.

Many others reports including the National Assessment of Progress Education 2010, Are Our Children Learning by UWEZO, REPLICA by Pincer International all indicated poor performance by pupils in Gulu district and called for investigations followed by remedial measures.

Only 36 pupils scored first grade in the district out of over 3,000 who sat the 2010 Primary leaving examinations. Meanwhile, the 2011 PLE mock examination results indicate that only 5 pupils attained division 1 out of the registered 3,664 candidates due to sit the final exams this year.

The 2011 Primary Leaving Examinations begin tomorrow with the briefing of the candidates before Social Studies and English exams on Wednesday and finally Maths and Basic Science and Health Education on Thursday.