Monday 30 November, 2020

3 per cent of students had special needs at PMSS 11-plus centre

Princess Margaret Memorial Secondary School on 11-plus day 2020.

Princess Margaret Memorial Secondary School on 11-plus day 2020.

Two hundred and thirty-eight (238) students from five St Philip-situated primary schools sat the Barbados Secondary Schools' Entrance Examination (BSSEE) at the Princess Margaret Memorial Secondary School.

Of the 238 students, seven students were approved for different forms of assistance to help them successfully navigate and complete the examination. That works out to some three per cent of the population at that one facility.

Working with the schools and Ministry of Education, requests were submitted to the Ministry and the approvals once granted were passed on to the examination centres so that the necessary adjustments such as large prints, extra water breaks or extra time, could be made if possible.

Speaking to Loop News, the Acting Deputy Principal at PMSS, Kevin Murray said that they were able to fulfil all the requirements of the students with special needs.

Twenty-one (21) students from St Catherine's were present at the Six Roads-located secondary school, and one of them needed extra time. Extra time was also granted to three students of the 68 students from Reynold Weekes Primary. One student out of the 34 from St Martin's Mangrove needed extra time and a reader.

One Hilda Skeene student of the 55 from that school needed to be situated near to the restroom facilities, while one Reynold Weekes student had to use or keep their asthma inhaler close. 

Yesterday (July 13), the day before today's Common Entrance Exam as the BSSEE is commonly called, a last-minute approval letter was submitted. Murray said that one little boy from St Martin's Mangrove was allowed to write the exam in a separate room, and that request was only communicated hours before today's tests.

The breakdown for the Exam is as follows:

Essay/ Composition Paper - 30 mins

Language Arts Paper - 1 hour and 20 minutes

Mathematics Paper- 1 hour and15 minutes

None of the 60 students from Bayley's Primary School had any special needs according to the reports received by PMSS from the Ministry of Education, Technical and Vocational Training.

Murray confirmed that all 238 students registered for the examination centre turned up for the 9 am start.

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