Editorial: As BECE starts, govt must not delay release of funds to WAEC

A total of 602,457 students from both public and private Junior High Schools across Ghana are writing this year’s Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) which started yesterday.

Out of the 602,457 – a total of 600,714 will sit the BECE as public and private schools candidates, whilst 1,743 will sit as private candidates, statistics from the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) have indicated.

They will write the BECE at 2,137 centres with one supervisor each. There will be 2,000 assistant supervisors and 21,025 invigilators. The BECE is mainly for students who have undergone nine years of basic education.

The Chronicle would like to convey its best wishes to all students across Ghana, who are writing this year’s BECE. We would also like to express our gratitude to the staff of the Ghana Education Service (GES), head teachers, subject teachers, parents and all stakeholders who have played various roles in making sure that the candidates are well prepared to write this year’s examination.

The Chronicle also wants to use the opportunity to advise all students not to engage in examination malpractices. In recent years, Ghana has seen a rise in the number of cases of cheating, collusion, and impersonation in examinations conducted by WAEC. This is a serious problem that has the potential to undermine the integrity of our education system and we, therefore, urge all the supervisors and invigilators to be extra-vigilant to help nip this canker in the bud.

We also want to advise government to do its part in the area of providing funding for the conduct of the BECE and marking of the examination scripts. Rather sadly, according to a Joy FM report, the Head of Public Affairs at the West African Examinations Council (WAEC), John Kapi, in an interview on Monday, indicated that failure by government to release additional funds will delay the marking of the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE).

He said the government has released 15% of the total payment for the 2023 BECE and, therefore, expects the release of the additional fund out of the 75% left to enable the smooth running of the processing and the marking of scripts. “For now, we’ve been able to print and we are conducting, but for marking and processing, we may not be able to complete that because we need more

The Chronicle is of the view that the BECE is a crucial examination for students transitioning from basic education to higher levels of education and it plays a pivotal role in determining their academic and future career paths. However, the smooth conduct of the examination and the timely release of results depend heavily on the allocation of adequate financial resources by the government.

The delay in releasing funds for the marking process will lead to the inability to mark the BECE scripts promptly which impedes the progression of students to higher education levels. Delayed results can disrupt enrollment procedures and limit students’ access to further educational opportunities.

Moreover, delayed release of results also hampers educational planning for schools, teachers, and administrators. This affects class placement decisions, curriculum development and the overall functioning of the education system. In light of these adverse effects, it is imperative that immediate steps be taken to address the funding issue.

The Chronicle urges government to prioritise the allocation of funds specifically for the timely marking of BECE scripts. This will ensure that the examination process is not hindered and that results can be released without unnecessary delays after the exams.


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