A TOTAL of 71,702 candidates out of 125,656 candidates who sat for Grade 12 examinations have obtained school certificates, Minister of General Education John Phiri has said.
Dr Phiri told a press briefing in Lusaka yesterday that this represents an increase of 1.18 percent pass rate compared to 2014.
Dr Phiri said of the 125,656 candidates who sat for the grade 12 examinations, 56,578 were girls while 69,108 were boys.
He said that the number of pupils who sat for examinations in 2015 increased by five percent as compared to 2014.
“The increase in candidature is attributed to the infrastructure development and upgrading of school programmes which the ministry is implementing.
“The ministry expects candidature to grow further this year, when additional grade 12 examination centres are opened in 220 newly upgraded day secondary schools,’’ Dr Phiri said.
He said the Ministry of General Education has granted provisional school certificate examination centre status to 220 newly-upgraded day secondary schools.
“Out of the 454 schools that presented candidates for the examinations, 45 recorded 100 percent school certificate pass rate,’’ Dr Phiri said.
The minister said all the provinces recorded an increase in candidates obtaining school certificates except North-Western Province.
He said to improve learner performance in schools, the ministry is implementing a “catch-up programme’’ to provide remedial lessons to learners who find difficulties in learning.
Dr Phiri said 33 cases of suspected examination malpractices were reported, of which 30 involved individuals while three involved entire centres.
He said the General Certificate Examinations (GCE), which are normally conducted in August, will this year be done earlier because of the general elections.
Dr Phiri also said that last year’s examinations were the last based on the old curriculum.
He said that this year’s grades seven and 12 examinations will be administered under the revised curriculum.