Fri. Jun 14th, 2024
Junaid Memon Editor Sindhi

In Pakistan, rote memorization has become a standard tendency in many educational institutions, particularly at the secondary levels. The aim of most of the schools is to prepare children for examination and for that purpose they teach selective portions of the syllabus and prepare assessments based on what is taught. The assessment results are then used for grading on children overlooking the weaknesses and strengths the children have shown in their examination. As a result, children carry forward the weaknesses and shortcomings to their next levels. This negligence compels the children to make progress in their academic life and the job market they enter. On the other hand, parents are confused because the only way they know to gauge their children’s progress is through the result card which does not give the full picture. The report cards mostly show that either the child is progressing well or needs improvement. No report card in the country shows children’s competencies in different themes and subject areas. If the children have to progress they need to know what they can do and in which particular areas they need more help.

Learning needs to be assessed and it is one of the mandatory parts of the teaching and learning process. Assessment of learning, in theschools, ends up at the achievement of a number of grades. This means that students’ achievements are based on the reproduction of taught books. Conversely, assessment for learning is least focused at the schools.

As observed, success is celebrated after the students secure good numbers mostly in summative assessments. Whereas; underperformance or poor turnout is left unaddressed; for, the course has to be covered and completed on time at the behest of school management and of board examination requirements.  As a result, students carry forward erroneous stuff in the transition to the next grades and sessions which had to be corrected when identified.

We do not have the data to know how many schools have a remedial mechanism to address either un-attempted stuff or wrongly attempted matter performed by the students both in formative and summative examinations.  As educators, we need to ask ourselves, why students take poor performance back home which can either be minimized or controlled through corrective measures.

From Primary Grades through the elementary level, the intended planned, and taught syllabus is in the control of school management and the faculty. In this period the school should develop diagnostic assessment policies and start remedial classes after each terminal examination focusing particularly on the content the students either could not attempt or have responded to incorrectly before moving on to the scheme planned for next semester. This practice would enable them to revisit what they were required to respond to and how they did it. Further, it would reinforce their learning before transitioning to the next semester. Likewise, this may also be applied to the students who shift from one class to another before they are taught the content of the new class.

Contents are inter-connected, like stepping-stone from one class to another, if a child misses one step, he or she is more likely to step on the next steps incorrectly. There are some parts of the content that the teachers ignore saying that it is not important. These unfocused parts of the content aggregated over years cause the students learning loss. So, the learning damage pooled over the years gradually puts the students back which might lead to dropping out.

The schools need to revisit their assessment policies and make it flexible such that it gives space to remedial measures after formative and summative examinations. This would hopefully pull back the students from the verge of at-risk and near dropping out.

By Junaid Memon

The writer is educationalist and Editor Sindhi to zeroperiod

One thought on “What Do We Do with Assessment Results?”
  1. Sir you have pointed right things very clearly. But what is needed is the action which school managers or teachers don’t do. Primary education is pillar of success for everyone and beside summative assessment, formative assessment must be done at this level.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *