On Monday, some 27,882 students from various schools in the country began the Annual Examination being administered by the West African Examinations Council (WAEC).
The test began on Monday following announcement by the Ministry of Education and the WAEC office in Monrovia that the exam would’ve begun on Monday. Based on the announcement, thousands of Liberian students were seen on Monday at various examination sites designated by the administrators of the test.
Prior to the administration of the test, Education Minister, Etmonia David-Tarpeh cautioned students who are writing the annual examination to desist from exam malpractices including payment of the traditional fee known as “flexibility fee.”
She said the flexibility fees enable teachers to be flexible on students who are writing the exams to engage in minor chat with a colleague nearby. Minister Tarpeh is therefore warning students to conduct themselves as students and take the exams very seriously.
At the same time, the Minister has warned school administrators to stop collecting flexibility fees from students and do away with other malpractices. She said that any student or administrator caught in the act of malpractice will be prosecuted in accordance with the law.
We are joining the Minister of Education to caution our students against cheating and other malpractices as they go through the examination process at various schools in the country. In the same vein, we are also cautioning them not to pay any fee to the test administrators in the form of bribery or flexibility fees.
We view the payment of flexibility fees to school administrators by students as a corrupt practice on the part of school administrators and call on the students not to pay any flexibility fees to them because this is purely bribery.
In the same vein, we want school administrators to stop the collection of fees for flexibility and other payments from students because this is nothing but corruption. We are willing to support any legal action that will be taken by the Education Ministry to curb this ugly situation that tends to undermine our educational system.
Let our students be given the chance to prove themselves as people who have gone through the ranks and files of secondary education without being intimidated by school administrators.
Heed the Education Minister’s advice!