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Education : Pre-Covid School Calendar To Be Reinstated For 2023

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Three key decisions for the students from the resumption of classes at next Wednesday. At her press conference on 31st January, Education Minister Leela Devi Dookun-Luchoomun has announced and explained these three decisions following the report of the Technical Committee on Education as endorsed by the Ministerial Cabinet. In short, a return to the old system by 2023.

The highlights

The 2022 school year will be extended until November. The Cambridge examinations, the School Certificate and Higher School Certificate, originally scheduled for April-June, will be postponed until November. The Primary School Achievement Certificate (PSAC) and National Certificate of Education (NCE) examinations will be held in October 2022, with all Grade 1-13 Assessments postponed until October and November.  The modular assessments for those in Grade 6 will be at the end of July and for those in Grade 5 at the end of September. And finally, the school calendar for 2023 will be a return to the old system before the pandemic, divided into three terms, from January to November.

There will be two school breaks, namely in April and August 2022. The school calendar will end in November 2022 to restart in January 2023.

Decisions explained

The minister has explained these decisions as “the ministerial cabinet decided in the interests of the student. According to the studies of the technical committee of education, the students had only 44 days of face-to-face teaching out of the 112 days that make up the first and second term. And in this count, there are cases of students and teachers contaminated and in isolation and also classes and schools closed for disinfection. Thus, it was understood, following meetings with education officials and rectors, that Curriculum Coverage was not possible and that the majority of students are not ready for the exams in April,” she said.

Pre-Covid School Calendar To Be Reinstated For 2023

Assessment of prior learning

This year 2022 will also serve as a general catch-up. It starts on February 2 until April 15 for the Easter holidays, resumes on May 2 until July 22 for the winter holidays and resumes on August 22 until November 4. “It will allow the student to fully reconnect to a fluid school life and thus, go through this exercise of a refresher course by a validation of achievements that will be especially beneficial to those students promoted to higher grades without assessments,” said the Minister.

Subsidies for a single ‘Sitting’

However, these decisions do not prevent those students who feel they are ready to compete in the Cambridge exams in April-June, “they will have to do so privately. The government will provide the subsidies but it will be a one-off. If they plan to take the exams in November, they will not receive the subsidies,” the minister said. She also announced that “the Laureate Scheme will apply in November, following negotiations with Cambridge University”.

Access allowed to unvaccinated under 18 years of age

Leela Devi Dookun Luchoomun also spoke about the health measures and barrier measures as announced in her previous press conference and took the opportunity to further motivate students to vaccinate. However, the Minister hinted that initially, unvaccinated students between the ages of 12 and 17 will be allowed access to schools.

Referring to the possibility that the start of the school year could be compromised by Cyclone Batsirai, the Minister suggested that “under the Covid Legislation, if a school closes due to a pandemic or other unpredictable reason, work will continue with remote learning, but on the announcement of a class 2, schools will close according to the protocols“.

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