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Foster Allen: Lack of Assessment in 42% of 135 schools


Assessment has been identified as one of the weakest areas within Jamaica’s classrooms according to the Ministry of Education. The announcement was made by Permanent secretary in the Ministry of Education, Elaine Foster Allen, at the Jamaica Teachers' Association Education Conference on 'Assessment in the Classroom.'

The event was held at The Ritz-Carlton Golf & Spa Resort and delegates were told that 135 schools were inspected across the island and 42 percent came up as being poor in the area of assessment.

 The permanent secretary explained that the main problem area identified within assessment was how teachers were using formative assessments. She explained that teachers were not using formative assessments effectively in their classrooms to carry out good practice. Missing from the formative assessment was the use of reflective insight.

According to The permanent secretary, the other areas of weakness identified were a lack of differentiation, an over-reliance on recall, and too few opportunities for children to relate their learning to real-life situations among others.

In expanding her presentation on assessment, the permanent secretary said the assessment practices were found to be weak, irregular and inconsistent; hence most students were not stimulated to learn in these classrooms.