21 private schools shut
From Tony John, Port Harcourt
The Rivers State Government has declared immediate demotion of 14 principals of public schools and has withdrawn the operational licenses of 21 private schools over their alleged involvement in examination malpractices.
Rivers State Commissioner for Education Prof Kaniye Ebeku stated this when he addressed newsmen in Port Harcourt, on Monday.
He said the action was taken following a letter written to the Ministry of Education by the West African Examination Council (WASC), which contained a list of 35 secondary schools in the state.
The Commissioner for Education disclosed that the schools have been delisted, with respect to some malpractices in the conduct of WAEC exams in 2021.
‘We received a letter from the WAEC containing the list of 35 secondary schools in the state that have been delisted for the purpose of writing WAEC examinations and their offences,’ Ebeku said.
‘Especially bordering on the fact that they were discovered that there were some malpractices in the conduct of last year’s examinations.
‘Now upon receipt of the letter, we immediately invited the affected schools to a meeting.
‘We presented this information to them and found that those at the helm of affairs in the various schools allowed this sort of situation to arise. Following that, we decided on certain sanctions.
‘For all principals, who are still in service and who superintended at the time this situation arose, we have directed that they be demoted.
‘For all schools that are found in the list, we have directed that their licenses to operate be withdrawn forthwith. This is the situation of things right now,’ Prof Ebeku stated.
He said the state government does not condone any form of examination malpractices whether in public or private schools in the state.
‘We have said it again and again that we have zero tolerance for exam malpractice. The WAEC is aware and they (WAEC) have actually written a letter to commend the commissioner for his efforts in ensuring that there are no malpractices in the schools.
‘Despite the fact that we have a criminal justice system, criminals are still operating. So we don’t tolerate malpractice. We will never.’
Prof Ebeku noted that in the past the state government had disciplined and dismissed principals who flouted the state government’s rules and regulations and engaged in malpractices, which members of the public were aware of.
Credit: The Sun