The overall performance of high school students in this year’s Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate, CSEC, exams has improved.

Pass rates have increased in 18 of 34 subjects this year compared with last year’s results. But there’ve been big declines in passes in two subjects — English Literature and Biology.

This was disclosed today by Education Minister, Ruel Reid, at a press conference at the Ministry’s Heroes Circles Office in Kingston.

Students’ performance in Mathematics has also improved marginally. But performance in English has decreased slightly.

Minister Reid says students’ performance in Mathematics improved by 2-point-5 percent when compared to last year’s results.

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Grades One to Three represent passes at the CSEC level.

Last year, approximately 48-percent of students who sat Mathematics passed, While in English last year, just over 71-percent of those who sat the exam passed.

Minister Reid says he’s encouraged by the performance of students.

More than 33-,700 students sat CSEC exams this year.

Minister Reid says boys outperformed girls in three subjects.

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The biggest improvement in passes was in Economics. There’s a 12.6-percent increase in passes in the subject this year.

This year, there’s a pass rate of just over 84-percent, While last year it was just around 72-percent.

However, there are big declines in passes in English Literature and Biology.

The Education Minister says passes in English Literature fell by 13.2-percentage points this year.

This year, just over 55 percent of students passed. This is down from 68 and a half percent last year. passed.

And, passes in Biology decreased by 12-percentage points.

Subjects that had pass rates over 90-percent include Agricultural Sciences, Principles of Business, Physical Education and Food and Nutrition.

Meanwhile, the Education Minister says students will be able to access their CSEC and CAPE results online at midnight.