Monthly Archives: December 2015

School Calendar Update

Please note, there has been an addition to the school calendar. The Ministry of Education has announced that there will be NO SCHOOL ON WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 6, 2016 to accommodate the launch of the 50th Anniversary Celebrations of Independence.

Dates for School Openings & Closings – Terms 2 & 3, 2016 (Barbados)

Here are some important dates to remember for the rest of the school year. This page will be modified as new information emerges. Please note that additional dates to consider such as Sports Days will vary from school to school. Bank holidays shown in red.

 

JANUARY

Term 2 begins: Tuesday, January 5, 2016 (for students)

Wednesday, January 6, 2016 – NO SCHOOL – Official Launch for 50th Anniversary Independence Celebrations

Thursday, January 21, 2016 – NO SCHOOL – Errol Barrow Day

 

FEBRUARY

Dates for the different zones (TBD) – NAPSAC ZONAL PATSY CALLENDER CHAMPIONSHIP (Your child’s school may be closed)

 

MARCH

TBD – NAPSAC QUARTERFINALS (Check with your child’s school)

TBD– NAPSAC SEMIFINALS (Check with your child’s school)

TBD – NAPSAC FINALS (Check with your child’s school)

 

APRIL

Term 2 ends:  Wednesday, March 23, 2016 (for students)

Term 3 begins: Tuesday, April 12, 2016 (for students)

Thursday, April 28, 2016 – NO SCHOOL – National Heroes’ Day

 

MAY

Monday, May 2, 2016 – NO SCHOOL – May Day (observed)

Tuesday, May 3, 2016 – COMMON ENTRANCE EXAM – Public Secondary Schools will be closed.

Monday, May 16, 2016 -NO SCHOOL – Whit Monday

 

JULY

Term 3 ends: Thursday, June 30, 2016

9 WEEKS SUMMER HOLIDAY

Important Information for May 3rd, 2016 BSSEE (Common Entrance Examination)

Just in case you did not get the opportunity to attend the 11 plus Town Hall Meetings this year (the final meeting was this evening at 5pm at the St. Michael School), here are a few important points to note. Additional information is also available here

Examination: Time and Structure

The examination takes place on Tuesday, May 3, 2016.

It begins at 9:00 a.m. with the Essay, which takes approximately 30 minutes. The English paper begins around 9:40 a.m. and is for 1 hour and 20 minutes. It is in two parts. The first section is 70 questions worth 1 mark each. It mostly consists of multiple choice and underlining the correct answers. The second section consists of 15 questions worth two marks each. It is important that we as parents remind our children the importance of writing in complete sentences. It turns out that if your child has a correct one-word answer that the student will receive NO MARKS for that answer.

There will be a half-hour break for snacks (nothing too heavy to eat so the children can concentrate better), then there is the Mathematics paper, comprised of three sections. Part A = 20 questions for 1 mark each. These are basic knowledge and this is the simplest section. Part B measures the student’s ability to comprehend what he/she is doing. This “comprehension” section has 25 questions worth 2 marks each. Of course, this section is a little more challenging. Finally, Part C, the most challenging section, contains 10 questions worth 3 marks each. It measures the child’s ability to reason. Remind your child of the importance of showing his/her working in the columns provided. If the child has the wrong answer but the working makes sense, a mark or two may still be attained.

Early sitters and deferrals

In order for a child to sit the exam early (i.e. not 11-years old by August 31, 2016), that child needs to have maintained a score of 85% or above in both English and Maths for all three terms in Class 2 and all three terms in Class 3. Parents may receive an Early Sitters form from the school’s Principal.

Deferrals are allowed up to age 12, however, the student must be scoring less than 20% in English and Mathematics. Deferrals may also be considered if the student suffered prolonged illness, e.g. for over a month. Parents may receive a Deferral form from the school’s Principal.

Non-nationals

Non-nationals MUST have a student visa or be a citizen by descent. The cost for a student visa is $300. Note that if a student has been in Barbadian schools without a visa, for example for four years, ALL monies would need to be paid before the examination, i.e. $1,200.

Choice of School Forms

Please see https://bajanmom.wordpress.com/2014/01/18/barbados-secondary-school-entrance-examination-common-entrance-2014-town-hall-meeting-recap-partial-zoning-ranking-the-nations-schools/.

Also, the Ministry may make the forms available online this year. All forms are to be given to the Principal NOT the Ministry of Education.

Special Needs

“Special Request” forms are available if needed. Special need examples include:

Vision – request for examination papers with larger print (no medical report needed). Parents of students who are fully visually impaired must give early notice so that the exam can be prepared in Braille.

ADHD – child put in other room so he/she can focus better and is less of a distraction for other sitters.

Uncontrolled diabetes (if child has to eat every 30 minutes, e.g.) – put in separate room.

Dyslexia – extra 15 minutes per paper. Medical report required (psychological evaluation).

Problems with hands – writers can be provided but request should be made early in advance (6 months the latest). If a child breaks his/her hand close to the exam, an alternate exam will be administered once a doctor reports that the hand is sufficiently healed.

Results

Examination results are normally available in June.