The Federal Government says a new date has not been fixed for the commencement of the suspended 2020 West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE).
The government said it is consulting with other Anglophone West African countries and relevant stakeholders on a new examination date.
Minister of State for Education, Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, had on 6 July announced that the exam would hold from 4 August to 5 September, 2020, only to be overruled a few days later by Education Minister, Adamu Adamu.
Adamu said the country could afford to miss the 2020 WASSCE and a full academic year than exposing students to COVID-19, a move which generated several reactions, with many arguing that if markets and religious houses could open for activities, then final year students should be allowed to take the exam.
Both the school-based WASSCE and National Examination Council (NECO) exam traditionally hold in May and June, but were distorted this year as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
A statement made available to The AUTHORITY by the Director of Information at the Federal Ministry of Education, Ben Bem Goong, said the Ministry has met with officials of WAEC and agreed to further consult with four other countries on a new examination date.
“We met with WAEC and have agreed to further consult with the other countries for a new examination date,” Nwajiuba was quoted to have said.
The minister urged parents to be rest assured that the “safety of our students and teachers is paramount as we work assiduously towards speedy reopening of our schools for the exit classes to take external examinations.”
On resumption of academic activities, the minister said school owners have up to 29 July, 2020 to meet specific guidelines towards the reopening of schools at a date to be announced in due course.
Nwajuiba said schools are to undertake self-assessment and send feedback to state ministries of education after which consultations with relevant stakeholders will be held to review the situation and decide on a specific date for reopening or otherwise.
The minister said having taken the painful but necessary decision not to reopen schools without necessary preparations to ensure the safety of students and teachers, the Federal Ministry of Education has continued consultations with stakeholders, and a mechanism to assess and monitor compliance shall be put in place.