Boko Haram has killed several students and teachers in the north east.
The West African Examinations Council (WAEC) says insecurity in some parts of the country, particularly in the North-East, has adversely affected the conduct of its examinations.
This is contained in a statement signed by the Deputy Director, Public Affairs of the council, Yusuf Ari, made available to the News Agency of Nigeria in Lagos on Monday.
The North, particularly the North Eastern part of Nigeria, has witnessed killings of thousands of people by the outlawed Boko Haram group. The group, which is opposed to western education, has also targeted schools, teachers, and students for specific attacks.
WAEC said insecurity formed part of reports discussed at the just concluded 56th Meeting of Nigeria Examinations Committee (NEC) that took place from November 12 – 14 in Lagos.
According to the statement, the council is worried by the disturbing trend and is doing all it can to ensure that the efforts of its management in safeguarding staff on duty during examinations reached the Presidency.
It said that the council had lost some staff to insurgents in some parts of the north during the conduct of the May/June West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE).
The statement also said members considered the increased use of cellphones by candidates during examinations and the need for necessary action.
“In view of this, the committee directed the council to make it mandatory for State Governments to procure serviceable metal detectors for public schools.
“Private schools are to procure same for their schools, so that the detectors could be used to prevent candidates from smuggling in mobile handsets into examination halls”, it said.
According to the statement, the committee expressed concern about the dearth of teachers in the country and called on governments to urgently institute measures to address the problem.
It said that offering special incentives, in order to attract the youths to study education-based courses in universities, particularly Mathematics Education, was key.
The statement said that there was also the need for appreciable improvement in the reward system for teachers nationwide in order to motivate them to put in their best.
It said that the committee also implored state governments and the various stakeholders in the education sector to consciously strive to elevate the standard of education in the country.
According to the statement, there is an urgent need for governments to step up efforts in providing adequate infrastructure, manpower and teaching aids to facilitate proper teaching and learning.
The committee meets twice a year to consider matters related to the conduct of the May/June and November/December West African Senior School Certificate Examinations (WASSCE).
The NEC, which is the highest policy making organ of WAEC on examination-related matters in Nigeria, has membership comprising representatives of State Ministries of Education.
It also has representatives from the All Nigeria Confederation of Principals of Secondary Schools (ANCOPSS) and the Universities.
Others are the Registrar to Council, the Head of the Nigeria National Office and the Head of the Test Development Division.
The statement said the committee also considered special cases, clemency cases, late cases, restitution, petitions and cases referred for further investigation from previous examinations.
It said that the committee suggested the learning of grammatical rules of the English Language as well as other languages as remedies to excelling in its examinations.
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