Jamaica has reversed an earlier decision and will now allow students to write the Barbados-based Caribbean Examinations Council (CXC) exams in July.
'It takes about a couple of weeks, into August, to complete it, but the process will start on the 27th of July and the question of social distance can be accommodated quite easily, because all the other children are out of school and it will be quite convenient,' said Karl Samuda, the minister with portfolio responsibility for education.
He told a virtual news conference on Monday night that the students will sit the Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC), and Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE) papers.
Karl Samuda (File Photo)
Samuda said there were strong arguments for Jamaican students not to take the exams at this time, but the decision was made after wide consultations.
He said, despite lingering concerns, it was clear that 'the vast majority of those present in the meeting preferred us to go forward rather than delay the exams.
'We will now go about the business of making the logistical arrangements so that no one who is taking this exam, beyond the challenges that they have already had, will in any way be compromised,' added Samuda.
Earlier this month, Jamaica had disagreed with a decision taken by the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Council for Human and Social Development (COHSOD) on Education that regional students will sit the CXC-administered exams in July.
The decision that criticised by the Jamaica Teachers' Association, whose president, Owen Speid, castigated CXC for the July exam date, despite what he said was the danger of COVID-19.
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