I am a sixth form student of a ‘prestigious’ school in San Fernando who has just received my results from the CAPE examinations which took place in July, 2020.
Following the release of the results of these examinations I along with numerous other students were left in a state of shock, confusion and great despair.
The grades received by many of us did not reflect the efforts put into preparation for these examinations—efforts which began in September of 2019, and culminated in July 2020 when these examinations were administered to us.
These grades, however, did reflect an attempt to break the hearts and minds of thousands of brilliant, young students, all for the sake of capitalism and profit.
For far too long, CXC has operated a monopoly on the Caribbean. This monopoly was left unchecked by every single authority figure in the region for years, despite gross inefficiency and lack of care for the wellbeing of their students.
We as a student body refuse to take it any longer. This year, the quantity of errors made by the examining body were limitless, so much so that it has sparked regional outrage. We are students, we can only do so much. We elected you into office for the sole purpose of representation, to stand up for us. So where are you when we need you Doctor?
Why is it that our best shot at success lies not in that hands of our Government, who is supposed to have our best interests at heart, but rather, on help from the opposition lawyers who were not elected?
We have been forced into a corner by your administration and must fend for ourselves. The shadow minister to your office, the MP for Tabaquite, Ms Anita Haynes, has shown more preparedness to help us than you have.
Do you not find that ridiculous? You have put your interests on the side of our oppressors, saying that we should not undermine the actions, integrity and credibility of CXC.
However, Madam Minister, if the body in question has no credibility or integrity to maintain, what is expected of us then?
We, as students, understand the difference between wishful thinking and fair expectation. We understand the importance of hard work, having already undergone the rigours of the CSEC examinations. We were informed subsequent to our decision to embark on our CAPE journey of the pressures of CAPE and how it differed from CSEC. Over the course of the past year of study, we would have come to know these pressures first hand. The examinations administered to us at school while we were physically there would have given to us an indication of what it was like to write an exam and receive marks relative to grades Is, IIs, IIIs etc. We knew what it took to receive the grades we wanted, and as a result, many of us did put in that work.
I say this to give you an insight into the mind of the sixth form student prior to these examinations.
We know what we did. We know our efforts. We know the quality of the work we submitted and of the papers we turned in at the end of each exam session. This is the reason for our outrage. This is the reason why so many students are demanding reconsideration. We are young adults with dreams and aspirations that know for a fact that we were cheated in an enormously significant way.
As you must be are aware, the communication between CXC and its stakeholders across the Caribbean was in no way forthcoming, clear or particularly insightful. It seemed rather apathetic and as though there was no real drive to adapt and treat with a global issue that has yet to be solved. But who could blame them? The examination body has gotten away with far worse for far too long. CXC claims to be ‘…the premier provider of globally competitive curriculum development services, examinations, certification and education services’, but this was not well represented over the course of the last six months.
I look forward to your communication with the nation your speedy action to resolve this matter. The future of the youths depends on it.