Malawi National Examinations Board (Maneb) is set to discuss challenges that prevent students from attaining education competences as outlined by curriculum developers and find solutions to them.
This follows a dismal performance in the 2019 Malawi School Certificate of Education (MSCE) examinations released in September.
The 2019 MSCE results showed a sharp decrease in candidate performance and some stakeholders blamed it on the abolishment of Junior Certificate of Education (JCE) examinations while others blamed it on the curriculum.
Maneb on Monday convened a memoranda workshop in Lilongwe to discuss chief examiners reports on reasons for candidates’ failure to achieve the expected competencies.
Maneb chief executive officer (CEO) Gerald Chiunda said in an interview that the workshop has brought assessment tools used in examinations for participants to critique and come up with solutions.
He said quality assessment plays an important role in enhancing quality education.
Said Chiunda: “As the systems work on the identified weaknesses, quality education is promoted. A system that allows people to critique it, give observations and recommendations can greatly improve.”
Commenting on the abolition of JCE as one of the contributing factors to the dismal performance in the 2019 MSCE, the Maneb CEO said there is need for thorough research to identify factors that led to the poor performance.
“What we saw as Maneb were issues to do with the new curriculum. We ask stakeholders who believe that the abolishment of JCE is a contributing factor to dismal MSCE performance to come forward with tangible evidence,” Chiunda said.
The four-day workshop has drawn stakeholders in national assessment to discuss various issues of benefit to the education system in the country. It is intended to analyse examination question papers, the marking schemes and responses that candidates gave out in national examinations. The workshop follows a similar workshop in 2018. Since then, Maneb has closely worked with Malawi Institute of Education and the Department of Inspection and Advisory Services in the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology.