Fire-affected Mahdia students given option to sit CSEC exams in January 2024 – Min. Manickchand

Students of the Mahdia Secondary School are being allowed to write their Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) examinations in January 2024.

The option was provided to the students since they were affected by the devastating fire at the school’s female dormitory last month.  

Minister of Education, Priya Manickchand made the disclosure Wednesday during a contract signing ceremony at the ministry’s Boardroom.

We offered the option of writing in January. Some students chose that option and some felt that they need to write it now. I think that was their way of reasserting their existence. We let it be completely a choice as we did with everything else with the students and their parents”, the minister said.

She noted that “Children who chose to write it now, we facilitated that with a caveat, but if after the results are out, and they want a second chance, they will get that, although we don’t usually do that in public schools.”

Minister Manickchand also underlined that the government is working diligently to provide the best possible options for the students of Mahdia Secondary.

“Those who chose to write it in January will write in January, that’s for the general population of all the children of Mahdia Secondary. The children who were directly affected, we have begun to talk to them and their parents about what options can work for them; given all kinds of other present circumstances including their psychological state of mind,” the education minister added.

She observed that students have expressed their hesitance and incapacity to return to school. As such, the ministry is exploring alternative options for accommodating those students in a comfortable and safe manner.

“Our insistence is that every single student that was affected by this fire, whether directly or indirectly, will finish high school successfully,” the minister stated.

Meanwhile, the Caribbean Examination Council (CXC) on June 7 via a Facebook post stated that June 19 has been identified as the alternative examination date for Guyanese students to write Office Administration (OA) Paper One. This is to facilitate the hosting of Local Government Elections (LGE) on June 12.

“It’s an exam where a lot of students write. So, we wanted to make sure that we could cater to everyone writing it comfortably. We do have some exams being written on June 12, but the number of learners writing is small and can be accommodated with other arrangements. The number of persons writing this particular subject [OA] is large. We wanted to make sure that we didn’t have any hiccups with accommodations of the students,” Minister Manickchand underscored.