SSC examinee Shayor Islam hugs her smiling mother as she tells the relatives about the result over the phone at Rajuk Uttara Model College yesterday. Photo: Palash Khan
After a six-year uptrend, the SSC results this year show a significant drop in pass rates and the number of GPA-5 achievers, which is largely blamed on political unrest and students’ not performing as expected in mathematics.
The results, published yesterday, also show a decline in other indicators: The number of failed students increased remarkably and the number of schools with cent percent pass rate decreased, and institutions with zero pass rate rose slightly.
The pass percentage of Secondary School Certificate (SSC) exams under the eight education boards came down to 86.72, marking a drop of 5.95 percentage points from that of last year.
This time, 93,631 examinees got GPA-5 (Grade Point Average-5) in the eight education boards. Last year it was 1,22,313.
On the drop of the success rate, Education Minister Nurul Islam Nahid blamed the countrywide non-stop blockade and frequent shutdowns enforced by the BNP-led 20-party alliance during the exams.
“The examinees had to take the tests amid intense fear and uncertainty,” he said while disclosing the overall results at a press conference at his ministry.
“The students prepared themselves for a certain paper but came to know that the exam had been postponed [due to hartal]. Then they prepared themselves again for another subject, but it was uncertain whether that exam would be held,” he added.
The SSC and equivalent exams were scheduled to begin on February 2, but the government had to reschedule dates of all exams to the weekends due to hartals.
The minister said it took 23 additional days to complete the tests.
Chairmen of almost all education boards, teachers and guardians also believe this was one of the major reasons for the students’ not performing as expected.
Frequent changes in exam schedule baffled the examinees and hindered their preparations, they said, adding that they had felt a lack of security on exam days as well.
“It was a messy situation. My son could not properly prepare as he was not sure what paper to get ready for as the schedule kept on changing,” said Afia Anjum, a mother whose son obtained GPA-4.5 from Government Laboratory School, Dhanmondi.
However, almost all board chairmen and teachers said the students did not perform as expected in mathematics.
This year the government introduced creative method in mathematics for the first time and many students found it difficult to answer the questions, which led to the pass rate dropping significantly in all boards.
In Dhaka, the success rate in mathematics came down to 92.80 percent from last year’s 98 percent, according to the stats provided by the boards.
Similarly, the pass rate in mathematics is 84.84 percent in Sylhet, where around 97 percent of the students passed last year. In Jessore, the rate is 87.64 and last year it was 97.30 percent.
“In all boards, we have seen an average decline of 10 percent in pass rate in mathematics. This is one of the reasons for the drop of the overall success rate,” Abu Bakar Siddique, chairman of Dhaka Board, told The Daily Star.
Echoing similar views, Comilla Board Chairman Prof Indu Bhushan Bhoumick said many students failed to understand the method properly and could not answer the questions.
Prof Ahmed Hossain, chairman of Dinajpur Board, said there was a scarcity of trained teachers of mathematics in many rural schools. “May be the teachers could not teach the students properly,” he said.
Some school teachers in Dhaka said the trial of creative method was disastrous in the first-term tests of Class-X and many parents opposed the new method.
Despite the drops, the schools across the country had a festive look yesterday. Students and parents, who had been anxious about the results, erupted in jubilation as soon as they received it.
The results, published 57 days after the exams, were available in schools, on education boards’ websites and on mobile phones via text messages since 2:00pm.
Earlier, the education minister handed over a copy of the results to Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at Gono Bhaban.
Under the eight education boards, 11,08,683 students — 5,48,362 boys and 5,60,321 girls — passed the SSC exams this year and 1,47,278 students failed.
The combined pass rate under 10 education boards, including madrasa and technical boards, came down to 87.04 percent, a 4.3 percent point drop.
A total of 1,11,901 students under 10 boards secured GPA-5 this year, last year it was 1,42,282.
The number of institutions with cent percent pass rate decreased to 5,095 from last year’s 6,210. No students passed from 47 institutions and 38 of them were madrasas.
Like last year, Rajshahi board topped the charts and Sylhet board was at the bottom.
In Dhaka, Shamsul Haque Khan School and College topped the list of 20 best institutions, surprising many. Rajuk Uttara Model College, Ideal School and College Motijheel, and Viqarunnisa Noon School ranked second, third and fourth.
Source: Daily Star