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By Theresa Goodwin

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The 2021 sitting of exams administered by the Caribbean Examination Council (CXC) will be postponed for two weeks from June 14 to June 28, with results made available between the last week of September and the first week of October.

The Barbados-based institution is also maintaining an earlier position that the three exams will be administered in their original format.

This means that, for the Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) and the Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE), Papers One, Two and Three will be administrated, while for the Caribbean Certificate of Secondary Level Competence (CCSLC), Papers One and Two will be used.

CXC Registrar Dr Wayne Wesley shared this and other details of the 2021 revised strategy at a press conference yesterday.

“The deadline for candidates to register their intent to defer has been further extended to May 31 2021. The deadline for the submission of school-based assessments will be extended to June 30th for all CSEC and CAPE subjects,” Dr Wesley said.

He added, “The broad topics that were released on May 10th 2021, territories would have submitted queries and CXC is in the process of responding, and a review is being done to ensure there is full clarity regarding what had been submitted.”

The CXC registrar also disclosed that further consideration will be given during the grading process to account for the psychosocial impact on student’s performance to ensure that they are not disenfranchised.

The news conference follows a series of talks with education ministers from across the region, the Caribbean Union of Teachers (CUT) and several other partners about the format of the exams.

The talks preceded mounting calls for the exams to either be cancelled or postponed in light of the Covid pandemic and the recent volcanic activity in St Vincent.

UNICEF was the latest organisation to call on CXC and ministers of education to make adjustments to the content and administration of the exams, in line with recommendations provided by the CUT to ensure that the region’s students are not further disadvantaged.

Meanwhile, CXC’s Chairman Sir Hilary Beckles emphasised that while the situation in each territory differs, the regional examination body had to use a strategic approach in developing the revised strategy.

“Despite this diversity of experience with Covid-19 across the Caricom community, we are required to function as one. This is a regional crisis and we are expected to find regional solutions to challenges that vary from country to country,” Sir Hilary said.