State Minister for Higher Education, John Chrysostom Muyingo has said cramming and examination malpractice have contributed much to the students’ failure.
Results of 8116 candidates who sat last year’s national exams (PLE – 3,500, Uganda Certificate of Education – 4,525 and UACE – 91) have been withheld due to examination malpractice.
According to Uganda National Examinations Board (Uneb) Executive Secretary Daniel Odongo, these unfortunate incidents had a link to examination malpractices while the worst done subjects at all levels candidates never understood questions because they had crammed.
During the release of the 2018 Uganda Certificate of Education results 2018, Uneb chairperson Mary J.N. Okwakol told the Minister for Education and Sports Janet Kataha Museveni that examination malpractices in schools now days is an organised crime between parents and school headteachers.
Prof. Okwakol’s fears were echoed by Muyingo, who, while speaking during the release of Uganda Advanced Certificate of Education (UACE) 2018 results on Thursday at the Office of Prime Minister, said candidates also indulge in this examination rigging as well.
“This practice is killing us. That is why government calls for support in fighting corruption, by fighting against exam malpractice. This is how corruption is bred. If teachers, head teachers and parents encourage this, that mean corruption will never end,” said Muyingo.
He added that this vice has also birthed students who cram work which has made them weak to the extent that they fail even simple questions.
“It’s quite sad that learners in Biology and other subjects cram instead of understanding. The way sciences are done in final exams is enough evidence which shows that theoretic teachings are more than practical experiences given to candidates,” he added before promising government support to Uneb.
“We will support you in all ways possible to control and eliminate exam malpractice. This is a war that must be fought by all of us. I would also call upon head teachers to ensure that learners don’t cram work but give them time to understand.”
The most common forms of examination breaches, according to Odongo, have been external assistance by parents and other sources yet to be found.
“For that matter the Centre number U2804 allocated to Seesa High School, Kakungube is being withdrawn for gross violation of examination regulations both at UCE and UACE,” he said.
In the UACE results released on Thursday, 36,656 candidates got three principal passes while 26,467 got two principal passes. 20,413 scored a principal pass, 12,303 have one subsidiary pass while 1,489 candidates failed flat.
63,123 candidates qualified for university admission while 83,536 qualified for admission in other tertiary institutions.
“I wish to encourage candidates to take up technical and vocational courses at diploma level. Don’t rush for degrees which may not benefit you in future,” Muyingo said.