Visually-impaired candidates succeed at CSEC exams
The first batch of Guyana Society for the Blind candidates to sit the Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) examinations have been successful, with the top performer obtaining five Grade One passes.
Ten Society for the Blind candidates wrote the special sitting of the examinations, as part of a pilot project that began last year, and an overall pass rate of 82.4% was achieved.
The candidates sat Mathematics, English Language, Human and Social Biology, Principles of Business and Office Administration.
The examinations were no different from the examinations sat by other students, however, the format for undertaking it varied. The examinations were administered on computers with special braille keyboards to accommodate the visually impaired/blind students.
During a press conference hosted at the Society’s Werk-en-Rust headquarters yesterday, the project coordinator Ganesh Singh, who is also blind, said that the achievement of the candidates was a major occasion for the society.
According to Singh, although the candidates entered the project with no significant high school education, they excelled. They completed the syllabi for some subjects months in advance. This, he said, was possible because they saved the time spent on note taking because all the information was already organised into digital editions, which the candidates would first read before interactions with their teachers, which proved to be an effective teaching mechanism. The syllabi were taught by three teachers who weren’t formally trained and had no special skill in dealing with the differently-abled students, while a visiting expert checked in intermittently.
He credited the project to the government’s One Laptop Per Family (OLPF) programme.
He explained that during efforts to help the students to become computer literate, he realised that they could sit examinations using the computers.