Poor results of humanities students, Sylhet floods drag SSC pass rate down

Many experts believe pass rate should not be considered to be a tool to measure the performance of students

Kazi Nafia Rahmanbdnews24.com
Published : 28 Nov 2022, 09:28 PM
Updated : 28 Nov 2022, 09:28 PM

After the examinations for Secondary School Certificate or SSC were deferred by seven months due to the coronavirus pandemic and floods in the northeast, the pass rate has dipped to 87.44 percent from last year’s 93.58 percent.

The floods dealt a huge blow to the students of Sylhet region, dragging the pass rate there to 78.82 percent from 96.78 percent.

“Many students’ books and notes were washed away. We gave them books but the gap could not be closed,” said Professor Roma Bijoy Sarker, chairman of the Board of Secondary and Intermediate Education, Sylhet.

Education Minister Dipu Moni said exams in disaster-hit areas, not the entire country, will be deferred from now on, to minimise the losses caused by disruptions.

Besides the floods, poor preparations of humanities students caused the overall pass rate to decrease. As much as 80.82 percent students of this stream passed the exams, down from 93.24 percent.

“Science students are more serious than their peers in humanities and business studies. In the countryside, humanities students are not very serious about their studies. They could not prepare well,” said Prof Tofazzur Rahman, exam controller of Dinajpur board, pointing to the disruptions caused by the pandemic.

QUALITY OVER QUANTITY

Abu Sayeed Bhuiyan, head teacher of Government Laboratory High School, however, thinks pass rate should not be considered to be a tool to measure the performance of the students, especially after a huge learning gap created by the coronavirus shutdown.

Syllabi were shortened while entire subjects were dropped from the public exams after the shutdown of one and a half years, during which students were automatically promoted.

“The learning gap won’t be filled up easily. SSC students who could not learn all the lessons should be taught those in college. Otherwise , the gaps will remain forever in their lives,” Abu Sayeed said.

Tariq Ahsan, professor of education and research at Dhaka University, said assignments and project-based learning approaches in colleges will be more appropriate to close this gap.

Educationist Prof Syed Manzoorul Islam said the institutions where the rate of failure was high need extra care.

“Instead of looking at the overall statistics, we should see the inequalities among schools – whether the teachers are giving lessons properly and if they have the right training.”

The former Dhaka University teacher also called for more investment in education. “We’re not increasing our investment in teachers. Why is the primary school teachers’ job second class? It should go under the first class.”

“The government should increase investment in the teachers’ training and payment so that good quality teachers get interested in the profession.”

Toufique Imrose Khalidi
Editor-in-Chief and Publisher