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Exams part of the cause

Maneesha Karan
Friday, October 01, 2010

AN examination-driven education system has contributed to social issues including unemployment, according to University of the South Pacific vice chancellor Professor Rajesh Chandra said.

He told the Fiji Principals Association annual conference yesterday the efficacy and appropriateness of the current education system in the Pacific had been questioned because of the increasing rate of unemployment and school "push-outs".

"Pacific educators now recognise that an examination-driven system has contributed to some of these social issues," he said.

"Pacific educators are now rethinking the goals of schooling in direct relation to the island context. The questions that have directed this educational reform are education for what and education for whom."

Professor Chandra said he was pleased with the shift to inclusive education providing young people life skills by bringing informal learning to schools.

He said there had been renewed interest in technical and vocational education and new policies such as child protection and inclusive education policies included in the curricula.

"Content has also been refocused to address current economic and social concerns.

"The inclusion of citizenship education and the teaching of entrepreneurial skills demonstrate how revised and current curricula better prepares youth for life outside the classroom.

"The phasing out of external exams at primary and lower secondary levels has enabled teachers to develop a holistic learning experience that is not predominantly focused on examination outcomes."





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