COVID-19: FG, WAEC agree on shift in WASSCE date to September, consider school reopening

School reopening

Federal Government and West African Examination Council (WAEC) have agreed to change the date of West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) from August 4 to September 5, 2020, initially announced by the Council.

Minister of State for Education, Hon. Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, who made this known on Friday in Abuja, said this was the conclusion of a meeting between the Federal Government and the officials of WAEC in Nigeria on Monday and that both parties have decided to further discuss with four other countries on new examination date.

The government has given school owners in the country up to 29th July 2020 to meet certain guidelines towards the reopening of schools at a date to be communicated in due course.

Nwajiuba said, having consulted widely, in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Health, Nigerian Centre for Disease Control, the Education in Emergencies Working Group, developed and disseminated guidelines for the reopening of schools.

Director, Information, Federal Ministry of Education, Mr. Ben Bem Goong, in a statement quoted the minister that the school owners were to prepare and comply with the guidelines.

Nwajuiba urged the schools to undertake self-assessment and give feedback to State Ministries of Education, not later than 29th July 2020.

He said;

“Thereafter, consultations with relevant stakeholders will be held to review the situation and decide on a specific date for reopening or otherwise,”

The Minister further cited that having taken the painful but necessary decision not to reopen schools without essential preparations to ensure the safety of students and teachers, the Federal Ministry of Education has continued talks with stakeholders, and a mechanism to assess and monitor compliance shall be put in place.

According to him, since Tuesday last week.

“We have consulted widely with stakeholders in the sector, including Commissioners of Education in all the states of the federation, the Association of Private School Owners of Nigeria,(APSON), National Association of Proprietors of Private Schools,(NAPPS), Provosts of Colleges of Education, Rectors of Polytechnics, Vice-Chancellors of Universities, some State Governors, and development partners.

“On WAEC, we met with WAEC on Monday and have agreed to further consult with four other countries on a new examination date.

“We appreciate the concern shown by all stakeholders and note the divergent views expressed on the matter, the Minister added.

“Parents should be rest assured that the safety of our students and teachers is paramount as we work assiduously towards the speedy reopening of our schools for the exit classes to take external examinations,” he said.