Alarm over illiteracy

SOME students entering secondary school education can’t read, it has been revealed.

Principals and headteachers told a Central Division headteachers workshop last week that they continued to receive students in secondary schools who could not read.

And the heads of schools questioned the removal of external examinations such as the Fiji Intermediate Examination, Fiji Eighth Year Examination and the Fiji Junior Certificate and the abolishment of corporal punishment.

Teachers asked that a study be conducted to establish the literacy rate in schools.

Responding to the issues raised, Central Division education officer Serupepeli Udre said they were aware of students who were still being promoted to the next level in schools although their literacy rate was low. He said the figures they received at headquarters did not indicate that literacy level in schools were low.

He said the percentage on examination pass rates they received from schools continued to increase, an indication that students were doing well academically.

“The abolishment of corporal punishment can be both negative and positive. The negative side you say is that when we abolish corporal punishment it gives rise to all other activities that are not helpful to the growth of the child, but this needs to be proven,” Mr Udre said.

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