Vol.18  No.1023 Tuesday  Edition, October 23, 2018 Second news page
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 Students block Paseo Colón to demand elimination of tests


By
A.M. Costa Rica staff

A group of senior students from academic schools protested in front of the Public Education Ministry in the Paseo Colon, to demand that the Ministry eliminate the graduation tests.

Since the strike of the public employees' unions on September 10, the students have not been receiving instruction and called this to the minister’s attention with a march and slogans stating they are not prepared for the tests.

The Ministry responded in a press release  and confirmed that students must take the tests despite not having received classes during the strike.

The Ministry stated that a written response had been sent to the students saying that there have been changes in the testing and some elimination of content, but that cancelling the tests are not an option. There will, said the ministry, be modifications in the evaluation of the final grade for high school students.

According to the Ministry, it was decided "to raise to 60 percent the value of the presentation grade when it comes to qualifying the National High School Tests 2018." The change was made “due to the suspension of classes, interruption of the educational process, lack of review centers, poor accompaniment and the climate of uncertainty among young people."

The change means that the final exam is only 40 percent of the final grade.

Edgar Mora, Public Education Minister, acknowledged that the change in the evaluation will be an aid to students who have been affected by the teachers' strike. "Unfortunately we cannot replace what these young people have lost emotionally, or erase the tension of not receiving enough educational support, but we can act with evaluation tools that seek greater equity, recognizing the sustained effort that students have made in two years and give greater value to the result of their persistence and perseverance."

According to the ministry, the tests for high school students will be "from October 30 to November 6."

Due to the lack of teachers to proctor the students during the test, the ministry requested that retired teachers (of any academic level) register as special delegates. The ministry stated that there are some teachers who are not on strike but volunteer proctors are welcomed.

According to the ministry, "At the close of registration of volunteers there were almost 14,000 people who offered to help with the tests."


  Students102318.jpg
A.M. Costa Rica  photo   
 
Students have not been receiving instruction and called  minister’s attention with a march and slogans stating they are not prepared for the tests.


National Baccalaureate tests calendar continues with these dates:

· October 30 - Spanish

· October 30- Mathematics

· November 1 - Social Studies

· November 2 - Science (Biology-Physics-Chemistry)

· November 5 - Language (English-French)

· November 6 - Civic Education

In spite of being on strike for more than a month and a half, the sentence of illegality of the Labor Court, and the imminent final test for high school seniors, teachers' unions, known as SEC, ANDE and APSE, rejected the request of the Education Ministry abandon the strike and return to classroom.

More over, the teachers unions are inviting members to the Seventy Fifth Teachers' Congress. "The National Association of Educators, invites you to be part of the LXXV National Congress of Educators. ANDE leads the struggle for social justice and the dignity of the people in the face of the neoliberal forums. We are inviting you to the congress on October 24, 25, 26 and 27," confirmed the ANDE union.























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