Pass rate at grade nine drops

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Grade Nine examination results pass rate at national level has dropped from last year’s 44.9 to 34.6 percent this year.
A total number of 100,824 pupils have been selected to Grade 10 for 2013.

Announcing the results at a press briefing in Lusaka yesterday (Thursday), Minister of Education John Phiri said the 100,824 have been selected from 291,018 candidates who sat for the 2012 examinations.

Of the 100,824 pupils selected to Grade 10, 52,288 are boys while 48,536 are girls, Dr Phiri said.

According to Ministry of Education statistics, Copperbelt Province has recorded the highest number of pupils selected to Grade 10 at 27,434, followed by Lusaka at 18,306 and Central Province at 11,084.

The lowest pass rate has been recorded in Muchinga Province at 3,050, while Luapula Province stands at 5,014 and Northern Province at 5,572.

North-Western Province has recorded the highest progression rate at 55 percent, followed by Western at 52 percent  while Muchinga and Eastern provinces have recorded the lowest progression rates at 24 percent and 27 percent, respectively.

Dr Phiri noted that there was an increase of 4.8 percent in the total number of candidates who sat for the examinations from 2011 to 2012.

He said 291,018 sat for Grade Nine examinations in 2012 compared to 276,840 the previous year.

The minister said of the 291,018 candidates, 153,630 were boys and 137,388 were girls.

Dr Phiri said the total number of pupils who entered for the examinations was 345,565 in 2012 against 306,408 in 2011 representing a percentage increase of 11.3. He said of the 345,565 candidates, 181,484 were boys while girls were 164,081.

Dr Phiri said there is need for stakeholders in Zambia’s primary and secondary education to analyse the country’s education system to establish where the bottlenecks are and deal with them to enhance performance.“It’s important to look at subject-to-subject analyses to see where the problem is to ensure excellent results,” he said.

Dr Phiri also called on the Examinations Council of Zambia (ECZ) and his ministry to review the country’s examination process at primary and secondary levels.

He said 247 candidates with special education needs, representing 148 boys and 99 girls, were selected to Grade 10 out of a total of 296 candidates (174 boys and 122 girls) who sat for examinations, giving a progression rate of 83.4 percent compared to 79.3 percent in 2011.

Dr Phiri said out of the 345, 565 candidates (181, 484 boys and 164, 081 girls) who entered for the examinations, 54,547 candidates were absent from the examinations compared to 29, 568 in 2011. Of the absentees, 27,854 were boys while 26,693 were girls.

He said all the provinces recorded absenteeism rates of more than 15 percent, except for the Copperbelt and Lusaka which had 11.6 and 11.3 percent respectively.

Dr Phiri said Western and Central provinces recorded the highest absenteeism rates at 23.6 percent and 21 percent respectively.