Commissioner for Education, Akwa Ibom State, Mrs. Eunice Thomas, has said that nine pupils from public primary schools in the state, who had distinctions in First School Leaving Certificate examinations, were unable to write their names after a further test was conducted on them.
Thomas said the revelation was made when the governor, Mr. Godswill Akpabio, directed all heads of schools to bring the best pupils from FSLC examination, one in each of the 31 local government areas of the state, to a designated school, where they were re-examined.
Speaking during capacity building workshop for primary school teachers in Uyo Senatorial District on Saturday, Thomas who was represented by the permanent secretary, Ministry of Education, Mr. Chrisantus Asuka, added that besides the nine, many others could not score five per cent in the test.
She said, “We conducted a pre-test and say let’s introduce subjective questions, and not objective questions that one person will stand in the exam hall and just call out A or B to the candidates and they all will mark the correct answer.
“At the end, we realised that the child that scored 100 per cent could not score five per cent.
“How did we discover this? In 2011, Akpabio directed all heads of schools to take the best pupils from FSLC examinations, one person per local government.
“We sent them to school – honestly, out of the numbers sent, nine were unable to write their names, while many others besides the nine could not score up to five per cent in the test,” she said.
Thomas blamed the teachers for lack of commitment which resulted in their making the pupils cheat to pass examinations.
She noted that many of these teachers claimed to teach the pupils without marking or signing the pupils’ exercise books for a month. She added that many of the teachers in the state public schools were not qualified.
She said, “I went to a school in Ukanafun LGA. I saw a teacher, who looks like a village woman. I asked her who her commissioner was. She mentioned a name that was not from this side, at all.
“If you set the same questions you set for the pupils for the teachers, many of them cannot answer.
“The state government conducted an Aptitude Test using the same syllabus for the students to test the teachers; honestly 60 per cent of the teachers were unable to pass the examinations.”