19,000 students received their Secondary Entrance Assessment (SEA) results today, Friday, July 1.
At Nelson Street Girls’ RC, principal Lisa Hinds-Lynch expressed she is quite pleased and elated by the girls’ results.
“We got quite a few first and second choice schools. And I must say it’s because of the dedication of our hard-working teachers. I’m shocked because you see I knew what this pandemic did to the children…what being away from school did to them and we could have seen it in the attendance …they did lose a lot of grounds and I know that our girls would move forward and make us all proud,” she said.
Fifty-seven Nelson Street girls sat SEA.
Commenting on the challenges her charges encountered in virtual learning, Lynch observed some of them were easily distracted and had no designated space to study.
“What really surprised me with my girls is that even when they were away for the two years, I felt we would have had some difficulty with their behaviour, but surprisingly, well not surprisingly, I think through the grace of God, our children remained fine young ladies,” she said.
She added most persons are quite “shocked” that they students are well disciplined and perform well academically.
“We get our shares of Bishops, Convent, St Francois, Providence…we do well,” Lynch mentioned.
She shared parents, too, were elated upon receiving their children’s results. “They were saying ‘Alleluia’. [Some were] kneeling on the ground. It was amazing,” she said.
Moreover, Lynch credited her staff for their efforts. “My teachers go far above and beyond. They worry about their children, they pray for them, just like parents. So I think even though I’m happy for the school, I’m very happy for teachers and parents.”
As her students prepare to start their new journey come September, Lynch shares this message: Your success depends on you and the choices you make, a placement at a school does not guarantee your success in life. You have to hold on to God and understand that you have to keep the faith and push forward always.
She underscored persons seem to think that something external will ensure one’s success. She emphasised, one’s attitude, “and I think not even your academic prowess, but your attitude, if you are willing to learn, if you are a pleasant person…then you will succeed.”
At Tunapuna Boys’ RC, principal Terrence Caesar told Catholic News he is extremely proud, yet “still disappointed” by the boy’s SEA results.
“I’m chatting with my teachers right now, brainstorming because I believe that they could have done better. I think the virtual cheated them from really excelling. Because I think my boys needed to have the balance in their life. They needed to have the exercise, the opportunity to run up and down and come back and sit down. They needed that balance activity wise, and I don’t think the pandemic afforded them,” he said.
Forty-six boys from the school sat SEA. Several boys, Caesar said, scored in the 99 percentiles. Out of the 46 boys, 20 passed for a seven-year school; 23 a five-year school; 1, a life centre and two re-sits
“And even with those re-sits and the life centres, I am still pleased to a large extent with my teachers in terms of where they would have moved these boys up and where some of these boys would have came back out in January.
“Based on the start of this calendar year we would have had about 14 or 15 boys that we would have submitted to the Ministry that were scoring below 30 per cent. So to come now and have five boys score below 30, it was a significant effort, not just on the boys but the teachers who contributed towards that,” Caesar said.
He highlighted various challenges affected the boy’s performance including being their being exposed to “environments that they should not be [in]. While I understood it, I cannot agree to it because some parents, out of frustration, there would have been excessive alcohol drinking, lewd behaviour, a few language and that sort of thing.”
Ultimately, Caesar emphasised the work to be done isn’t just for the next batch of SEA students, but a wider focus on how to move the whole school forward to “a different level.”
At Bethlehem Boys’ RC, Besson Street, Port of Spain, 15 students sat the exam, however, the results were impacted with the shift to online tuition during the pandemic. Catholic News learned that the change to virtual resulted in a drop in students’ attendance for classes although efforts were made to provide electronic devices and to rectify any issues which occurred with these. While the results did not turn out as well as expected, the school did note a drop in the number of students who needed to repeat.
The return to face-to-face classes for two months prior to the exam was welcomed and the school expected better results in the next SEA.
Rose Hill RC, Laventille had 23 students sitting the SEA. “Based on the circumstances, it was a fair assessment”, the Catholic News was informed.
The atmosphere at the school was described as “hyped with emotion”. There were a couple students who will resist but they are being supported and encouraged for the next SEA sitting. The school was confident that whatever school the Rose Hill students went on to they would make it a success. “I know they will excel…they will make it!”
The school has offered support to their students on their secondary education. “We are there to support them with projects, things they don’t know, we will help them”