The Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports has released the preliminary results for the 2012 edition of the Primary School Examination (PSE), administered to 6,983 Standard Six students across Belize in two stages earlier this year.
Seven of the top ten national performers came from the Belize District, including the top two, Hummingbird Elementary’s Rhiki Alegria, who finished with 389 points from a possible 400, and Jasmine Betancourt from Bernice Yorke Institute of Learning, who had the same score.
From the other districts, performers in the top ten were Stann Creek’s Ejike Udumii of Solid Rock Christian in Dangriga, third overall with 387; Serena Anderson of Louisiana Government in Orange Walk Town, who finished sixth with 383 points, and Mamie Willis of St. Andrew’s Anglican, in San Ignacio, who also had 383 points.
The PSE tests achievement in four key primary school curriculum subjects: English, Mathematics, Social Studies and Science. The results are expressed as a percentage score reflecting the student’s own achievement against the standard and not against other students, as the PSE’s predecessor, the Belize National Selection Examination (BNSE), sought to do.
Mean, or average, scores in all four subjects were up by between three and ten points, continuing the apparent trend of fluctuation from year to year in the scores. The release notes that similar increases in scores were seen in 2004, 2008 and 2010.
The average English score is 58.6%, with just over half of students scoring Grade C (60 to 69) and above, an increase of 3.7 from last year’s mean score of 54.4. Students performed better in the Comprehension and Mechanics sections of the test, given in multiple choice, than in the Composition and Letter Writing sections.
Math saw an average of 54.4%, up seven points from last year’s dismal 47.2 mark. Problem Solving continues to be the weak link, with only four in ten passing.
Social Studies and Science enjoyed continued successful performances, with a mark of 68.9% for the former and 74.4 for the latter, increasing by five and ten points respectively from last year’s averages.
Article courtesy Amandala