CXC credibility on the line

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Concerns are being raised about the credibility of the Caribbean Examination Council (CXC) after the preliminary release of the 2020 CSEC and CAPE results.

Several education ministries across the region have written to the regional examination body requesting an investigation into what has been described as “wide-scale anomalies”.

This has prompted recommendations for an internal review of CXC’s operations to ensure standards are maintained.

Local CXC Registrar Myrick Smith was part of a Big Issues panel that examined the topic on Sunday.

“CXC, in order to remain viable as an entity and to remain in a position to serve its people, should be very open and willing to listen and ensure that there is transparency, accountability and that its stakeholders are satisfied,” he said.

“I should say though, and this is just my personal feeling on the matter, having been the local registrar for many years, I’ve attended meetings of the council for several years, I believe CXC has come a far way over its 40 years,” Smith stated. 

During a virtual conference on Friday, CXC agreed to look into and resolve the issues and gave regional partners until October 25 to submit queries.

Head boy of Queen’s College in Barbados, Khaleel Kothdiwala, who was a part of the discussion on Sunday, questioned how the queries would be handled.

He suggested that this should be done wholesale and not on a case by case basis, given the volume of queries anticipated.

“I think that would go a long way with alleviating the concerns of credibility but as it obtains right now, CXC is an examining body and the currency in which they trade is credibility,” Kothdiwala continued.

“Its validity, it’s the veracity of what they put out and right now, at least to my mind and to students and to teachers across the region, that is being seriously affected.”

Smith said the Ministry of Education is now receiving queries from individual students who sat the exams in July.  

This is in addition to official communication that was sent on the behalf of the ministry for English literature and visual arts were not graded.

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