More passed English but more failed science – WAEC releases 2020 WASSCE results
The results of the first batch of free SHS graduates showed more passes in two core subjects, English and Mathematics, the West African Examination Council (WAEC) statement has indicated.
In a statement announcing the release of the results, WAEC said the number of candidates who scored grades A to C6 had increased when compared to the 2019 results.
It said there was an 8.38% increase in the pass rate for English and a 0.4% increase in the pass rate for Mathematics.
The results of the 2020 WASSCE is seen as a verdict on the government’s free SHS policy introduced in 2017.
For the past three years, the government has absorbed every tuition and boarding fee and a host of other bills for students in public senior high schools across the country.
That comes down to 2.1billion cedis spent on 1.2million students.
The policy has not been without controversy. The increased admission rates led to overcrowding, forcing the government to introduce what it called a ‘Double Track System’ that allowed two streams of students to go to school at different times.
The opposition and some sections of the public also expressed concerns about the effect of free SHS on quality education.
After three years of the policy’s implementation, the WASSCE results are out.
The examination body said it observed declining performances in Social Studies and Integrated Science, two other core subjects.
There was a 10.6% decrease in the pass rate for Integrated Science and 11.12% for Social Studies.
The results for Integrated Science may not come as a surprise after some violent scenes were recorded during the examination. Consequently, some 14 students from five Senior High Schools were dismissed and barred by the Ghana Education Service (GES) from writing their exit exams after they engaged in violence, vandalizing school properties.
It took a subtle intervention of the president to get them back into the examination halls.
Some students from Bright SHS went on a rampage beating WAEC invigilators who they said had refused to allow them to cheat during the WASSCE.
The rioting students also pounced on a journalist and beat him to a pulp when he visited the school to verify reports of riots.
An invigilator who narrated what led to the riots said the attack was allegedly instigated by the proprietor of the Bright Senior High School.
Some 375,763 students from 977 schools sat for the examination in 2020, a figure which WAEC said is 8.6% higher than the number that sat in 2019.
The examination body also revealed worrying data on the cancellation, withholding of results.
Some 2,383 candidates had a subject cancelled for “engaging in collusion, bringing foreign material to the examination hall, and tearing apart their examination papers to solicit assistance.
The entire results of 480 candidates were also canceled for bringing mobile phones to the examination hall.
The entire results of 384 candidates have also been withheld pending investigations into examination malpractices.