The Amalgamated Rural Teachers Union (ARTUZ) has raised concerns over ZIMSEC’s decision to proceed with Ordinary and Advanced level examinations despite shambolic preparations and limited teaching period caused by the COVID-19 induced lockdown.
Schools closed on 30 March following the declaration of a COVID-19 total lockdown and only resumed classes in a phased approach that began in September through to October.
ARTUZ President Obert Masarure accused the government of failing to address concerns raised by teachers and parents before letting pupils sit down for examinations.
“The examinations must be re-written in 2021, we must give students the six months period they lost due to the coronavirus induced lock-down. We are the teachers, we know that the students were not prepared for the papers.
“Even the ZIMSEC was not ready for this, we have cases now of geography papers have some missing questions, the map which is a compulsory question was missing as well, examinations need time to prepare and it is unfortunate that our government does not want to accept that,” said Masaraure.
He also urged government to take note of the problems schools are facing in administering the examinations including ZIMSEC mistakes and infrastructure among other issues, before they ‘force’ students to sit for papers.
“There are so many issues which needs to be addressed, teachers who are supposed to teach those students are incapacitated and there is also an issue of accessibility, grade 7 pupils in Chiweshe failed to sit for their exam because the bridge where they pass through was over flooded, does it mean that they will never write their exam because it is always raining during the examination period?
“In Hurungwe, a certain school received seven question papers only yet there are 92 students who were supposed to sit for the paper and they had to wait for another school to finish in order for them to write, the situation is chaotic and government needs to accept,” he added.
Masaraure, however, had no kind words for teachers who are invigilating the examinations saying that they ‘have no shame’ to monitor examinations fully knowing that those pupils did not learn enough to be examined.