The Executive Secretary, Benue state Examinations Board, Makurdi, Mr Iorbee Hon has expressed the readiness of the Board for Basic Education Certificate Examinations, BECE, which is slated for August 24th, 2020 despite the short notice given them by the federal government after a long period of shutdown of schools occasioned by Covid-19.
Mr Hon said that the short time is enough for them to “maneuver” as they are to reopen by 4th August and on the 24th of the same month, they are going to commence BECE for which they had already set questions. He assured that the students will excel in the exams without compromising standards. According to him, most schools were teaching their students at home online during the shutdown period.
“Standard cannot be compromised. You know that the syllabus covers a whole year, it is quite true and we have already set exams covering the whole year. But given the fact that when the students were at home, their parents were advised to have them have a kind of online lessons and in the state here, I can testify to the fact that most schools were doing that. Even the school where my child is currently schooling at, (that is St John’s Secondary School Yima), they were holding their lessons online. So, we perceive and view, and know quite well that definitely, they shall pass exams without we compromising the standards”, Hon assured
Talking about the challenges, the Executive Secretary expressed worry about Covid-19 which has turned everything outside down and has come to stay with us until a medicine is found for it. He said that the Board will advise the proprietors to ensure that the rules provided by the federal government to prevent the spread of the virus are strictly adhered to. The rules include, providing running water for students to wash hands regularly, provision of hand sanitizers and
ensuring that every student wears facemask. They will also ensure social distance such that one child will sit per seat so far as the school is going to reopen only for the exiting classes and if the halls are exhausted during the exams, they will move to the classrooms. For those who are operating Boarding schools, social distance will be maintained in the dormitories so that beds will be placed side by side and there will be one child on a bed.
He added that they were intending to call on the proprietors to provide thermometers for each school for screening of the students to ascertain their status before they are allowed to enter and the federal government has insisted that sick beds or remedies be made available at the corners of each school so that if any case is discovered, it will be taken care of, while those found sick will be considered after the exams when they recover.
Mr Hon said Covid-19 should be an eye opener to the Nigerian government, not only Benue state so that they will go digital and prepare for such eventualities. He pointed out that countries like the United States of America were going on with their academic activities smoothly during the lockdown because they were already practising it.
He advised parents not to be afraid to allow their children to resume because if they fail BECE and SSCE, they cannot further their Education.
Mr Hon urged the students to study hard within the short time available in order to excel in the exams.