By Ritah Kemigisa
Parents across the country are struggling to understand how their children in senior one and two performed in the just concluded school term.
Unlike before where report cards were based on the performance of the learners presented in percentage scores of between 0 to 100 percent, things are now different with the revised Lower Secondary Curriculum which is competence based.
This means learners are graded on the competence exhibited in the subjects they are doing.
Most of the new report cards for senior one and two which Daily Monitor has seen do not categorize students based on their class positions, something that has left many parents perplexed.
So how is the grading done under the new curriculum?
Under this new curriculum, teachers grade students on a scale of 3 that’s to say, 1, 2 and 3.
All marks are out of a cumulative mark of 20% whose average at the end of senior four will be sent to UNEB as continuous assessment.
The national exams body will then add the 20% onto the 80% it will use for assessment in the final exams to make the total of 100%
“On the report, they will show you the scale of 3, 3 means a child is Outstanding, any parent can understand this, 2 is Moderate which is means fairly good, the child has acquired most of the skills but has not excelled as the one who has 3, between 1 and 2, that is Basic, the child has demonstrated basic performance,” said Mr Swaib Musubire a teacher who preferred anonymity.
Mr Brian Mugisa, a Deputy in charge of Academics at Rubona SS in Bunyangabu added that all activities of integration are marked under the lowest denominator of 10.
“The questions we set have competencies, when you set a question, there are certain things you want a child to bring out. If it’s one competence, it’s marked out of 10, if there are two it’s out of 19, if there are three it’s out of 28, for four it’s out of 37 like that,” said Mr Mugisa.
He adds that “…if a student gets 7 out of 10, initially that would be 70% but since now we are scaling them up to 3, we shall divide 7 by 10 and multiply by 3 meaning the learner will get a score of 2.1” said Mr Mugisa.
A source at the National Curriculum Development Center is however blaming schools for not taking the parents through the new grading system.
On their part, the Ministry of Education spokesperson Dr Dennis Mugimba said there are plans to carry out public mass awareness about the new grading system.
“We are planning on having an open engagement with the public through the media where we shall be creating broader general awareness to the public on how this assessment is done in a manner that can be understood by an ordinary person,” said Mr Mugimba.