Pupils speak on entry test scrapping TINAYE CHABVUTA
TINAYE CHABVUTA

TINAYE CHABVUTA

The Minister of Primary and Secondary Education Dr Lazarus Dokora suggested that form one entry tests should be stopped and announced a date for all form ones enrolment. These entrance tests are a reap off to parents as the money they fork out is non refundable even if the child fails to secure a place. Cool Lifestyle went around interviewing students to hear their side of the story and this is what they had to say . . .

Schools are robbing parents of their money ‘cause imagine how many times would a student have to write those tests before they get the place “YATOVA FUND RAISING” and also these test remove the worthiness of the grade seven exams ,some intelligent but financially disadvantaged students who can’t afford the non-refundable entrance fee could not get the opportunity to enrol in such schools .This criteria of recruiting may also characterised by nepotism ,favouritism and corruption. So form one entry test are not necessary. They should be a date for enrolment in all schools.

Monalissa Muzadzi, 18 years, Transparency College

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Condemning entry tests is nothing but a perfect decision I don’t think those entry tests are an accurate reflection of the students’ abilities, in fact they are not even necessary because there are Grade Seven results to use instead. If anything the entry tests are a load of pressure on students and excess expense on parents considering that most are supposed to be paid. However, setting a date for enrolment in all schools is not so much of a good idea due to myriad of reasons. I don’t think it can be accomplished in a regulated period because of the heavy influx of Form 1 students and furthermore it would be of great inconvenience to those that would want to try different options of different schools since enrolment would now be confined on a specific date.

Ngonidzashe Marodza, Kuwadzana High 1

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Grade 7 exams are good enough, once one has passed the exam it’s a waste of resources to engage in other exams of the same nature. Schools should consider how parents want the best for their children so they should use other criterion to select relevant students rather than making them pay for such. Grade 7 results are good enough.

Thelma Kim Muzhongotewa 15 years, Oxford High School.

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Considering the number of students who are enrolled for the test and those who qualify, the difference is much unfairly hence no refunds are done either you qualify or not. That’s the profit made by schools are exorbitantly unfair and unjustified. So the tests are nothing but a money milking machine.

Khumbulani Sikwabaile, Glen Norah 2 High School

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In my opinion I can say that form one tests are very necessary because that’s when teachers can see the capability of the student, the field which suits him or her and also the kind of help he/she needs according to how he answers the those junior tests in order to be a great ‘O’ level and ‘A’ level student tomorrow. So I can say they may need to consider the form one tests necessary.

Tinaye Hope Chabvuta, 17 years, Transparency College

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I stand to acknowledge and give heed to the Hon Minister’s point of view. Personally I do not see the actual essence of the entrance test beside the hidden but open obvious point behind making free money. I stand to say this because even when a student looking for vacancy fails there is no refund. Worse still those conducting these tests at one point seem not to have a restriction towards the number of participants in the test because money is coming in. Restrictions only come when it’s the time to give vacancies because the money could have already got in. I believe the entrance test is unnecessary to us but necessary to those who are benefiting money from then. Yes there are costs for stationery and stuff but $20 per head from approximately 90 aspirants is a lot of money to cater for stationary .What else can be given as an excuse. I am actually married to the condemnation by the Hon Minister over the issue of entrance tests.

Macdonald Gadzikwa, 19 years old, Mother Touch High School

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I think it’s a good idea as some students’ parents won’t be able to afford moving around in search of places for their kids. Setting a date is a good idea but it doesn’t need to be one day only as it would be impossible to accommodate all the grade seven students. I think the minister has taken a good step.

Tafadzwa Pukayi, Ace College.

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I strongly support the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education for condemning Form1 tests because I also believe that they are not necessary and are time wasting. That is the whole point of writing final exams which means those results can be used. In using only the final results for enrolment it reduces costs to be incurred, as well as time that can be used to but uniforms and so forth leading to an early start.

Patience Mudzongo, Christ Ministries High

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I support the minister because most school heads were prioritising the entrance test more than the grade seven results that prove that one completed the primary school regardless of the units. I am even of the idea that the entrance tests must be used when students had had excellent results and authorities fail to come up with a definite group of good students.

Joshua Chatima,17, Christ for Zimbabwe college.

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I think the minister has made a wrong move by setting only one day for form one enrolment because most our parents are facing hardships and can fail to raise funds for the day in question leading the child settling for a lesser effective school. The activities on the day can result in bribery or corruption because every parent would want to secure a place for their child through any means available. This is social injustice to many.

Nomsa Kutyauripo,17, Presbyterian College.

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I salute the minister for taking such a stance because these entrance tests had became a fundraising activity for most schools whilst robbing parents of their precious money. Generally the practice was not fair knowing that these grade seven students would have just finished another public exam.

Christabel Damba,16, Pace College.

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Entrance tests should be written because different schools have their ways to select student they want and also they are different things they look at considering if their school is a science school or maybe specialises in sport. Also Zimsec is no longer reliable because of the leakages that their exams are popular for so it is better for schools to make prospective students write entrance tests.

Tanaka Chakamhara L6 Trust Academy

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They should write entrance tests because it somehow shows how smart a student is. Schools should be allowed to assess their prospective students using a criterion which is relevant to what the school offers. Not everybody is fit to any school otherwise it will be very hard for the student to cope with a certain environment which will affect their results and most probably won’t achieve their goals.

Tadiwanashe Madzivare, Christ Ministries.

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Grade 7 results are good enough for enrolment because they are written for the same purpose so there is no need to sit for another exam. Parents turn to lose out because if the results are not satisfactory it means they have to find another one and most probably time would have been wasted as well as money. It also means the authorities are undermining the relevance of the Grade 7 exams and making them irrelevant .

Josphene Mapani 15 years, Girls High School

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I don’t think it’s a good idea to condemn Form 1 entrance tests because on the enrolment date parents and their children will be crowded at some schools and those pupils with more units will spend the whole day moving from one school to another.

Pritchard Chirume 15 years Glen Norah 2 High school.

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I think it is a good idea for pupils to write entrance tests because its way to determine whether a pupil should progress to form one or go back to primary school. It is necessary for them to write both the Grade 7 exams and the entrance test because some students have a tendency of cramming for exams but if it’s a test which they do not know how it is going to be set it will provide relevant information as to if they should enrol the student.

Shyleen Tinashe 18 Best Academy College.

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It is fair for students to write exams as well as entrance test because the schools know what they are looking at in choosing students and also the parents are the ones who pay not the students so they shouldn’t worry on how the expenses are going to be met ,it is not the student`s duty.

Tinotenda Matandaware 13 years Mabereign Girls High School

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From my own point of view it’s better to let them do what they see working . We as kids we watching so much that we can avoid such happening on our kids .However these entrance test are a daylight robbery on the parents side since they would move around paying non-refundable money to secure places for their children.

McDonald Zawe, St Mary’s High School

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