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19.11.2021 Feature Article

Solution to West African Senior School Certificate Examination malfeasance: the ONLY way out

Solution to West African Senior School Certificate Examination malfeasance: the ONLY way out
19.11.2021 LISTEN

The incidence of examination malpractices has become so widespread that there is virtually no examination anywhere in Ghana, at any level and outside the formal school system, that there is no one form of 'sharp practice' or the other (Ijaiya, 2007).

The preponderance of Examination malpractice in the West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASCE) in Ghana is eroding the credentials of industrious school leavers and their teachers alike.

Thus, it is now a herculean task trying to distinguish between results that are genuine and deserving of congratulations and the product of those borne out of examination malfeasance, notoriously referred to as 'apor'.

The height of impunity with which students approached the just ended 2021 WASCE included but not limited to an alleged smarshing of the windscreen of an invigilator's car in Nkawkaw Senior High School and an alleged destruction of the farm of an Assistant Headmaster of Osei Tutu Senior High School on the back of strict invigilation.

What does this mean? It only means that students of today see 'apor' as a right which they lay claim to just as the right to vote, work etcetera because if it were not so, the students would not be courageous enough to do what they do when their attempt to cheat during examination is foiled by invigilators.

In order to address this unceremonious drawback in our educational system, the ONLY measure to put forward for consideration, to if not eradicate this menace completely, profer some level of reduction is simple.

This identified measure is to be construed without prejudice to other equally important measures such as prevention of question leakages and a host of others but the point really is, what goes on in the respective examination halls is what matters most.

The student of contemporary Ghana will most likely fail if invigilation is conducted strictly and religiously. Most students of 2021 need help that goes beyond just seeing the question papers before the examination day. The help allegedly could take the form of providing answers in the exams hall and this is made possible due to a relaxed invigilation.

Let the papers leak, students of 2021 will still fail if he or she does not copy or is to given answers in the exams hall by either invigilators or their own colleagues with whom they are writing the exams.

Eventhough, most schools write in other schools in the BECE, the extent of the malfeasance is not at par with the WASCE.

Therefore, it is my humble opinion that the West African Examination Council (WAEC) stops Senior High Schools from writing the WASCE in their own schools. Thus, students should be made to write the exams in another school with invigilators selected from the host school.

Thus, students in senior high school 'A' may use the facilities and teachers (invigilators) of senior high school 'B' and students of high school 'B', sent to high school 'C' to use their facilities and teachers as invigilators. While students in high school 'C' sent to high school 'A'. In this way, there would be no problem in respect of inadequacy of facilities in respect of classrooms or auditoriums for the examination.

This will reduce the incidence of examination malpractices as the students do not know the invigilators, have not made any acquaintances or friends amongst them, have not built any good rapport with them and so can not easily influence them to panda to their wishes in the examination hall.

Additionally, the students happen to find themselves in a completely new environment which alone can suppress any infelicitous behaviour that is at variance with the examination etiquette.

The only way out!

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