Eighty-one percent of Primary and Preparatory Schools across the island are ready to administer the first sitting of the new school leaving examination, the Primary Exit Profile, PEP.

That’s according to a survey conducted by the Ministry of Education recently. The study, which involved some 800 schools, found that the other 19-percent are now being prepared.

Chief Education Officer, Dr. Grace McLean, revealed the findings during an interview on Cliff Hughes Online this morning. She says the Jamaica Teachers’ Association, JTA, and the teachers are now on board.

Last month, newly-installed JTA, President, Dr Garth Anderson, said PEP was destined to fail.
He said despite several workshops, the programme remains a mystery to teachers and school administrators. But, Dr. McLean says over 80-percent of schools have told the Education Ministry that they’re ready to administer the country’s new primary means of matriculation to the secondary level.

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She says the Ministry has also consulted with the JTA, and they’re now on board.

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Parents have raised concerns about sourcing prescribed texts for their children who’ll be sitting the first-ever grade six component of the new assessment.

Dr. McLean says the Ministry had informed schools to avoid adding some of the old GSAT workbooks to book lists.

This, as the Education Ministry is providing materials for students, free of cost.

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In endorsing PEP, Dr. McLean says it’s to alleviate some of the pressures students sitting the GSAT, would have faced.

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She says weekend PEP camps geared at preparing students, parents and teachers, are to start next week.