By: Justicia Shipena
Education executive director Sanet Steenkamp says the grade 11 cohort of 2022 will only commence with their academic year on 24 January, very late into the month due to the exam leakage and postponement suffered by the ministry.
According to Steenkamp, the step was taken to accommodate last year’s grade 11 learners who are set to write complete examinations on 20th of January 2022.
“These learners will report to hostels by 7 January and have discussions as well as preparatory sessions and then they will start the exam on 10 January 2022,” said Steenkamp.
However, the rest of the learners will only start school on 10 January.
“This includes our resource schools and units,” she said.
Steenkamp said the break had not been long enough to welcome teachers to a fresh start of the academic year this Thursday, however this year education is going full out.
“Our theme for this year is; ‘Reimagined Education 2022: Education Recovery with Renewed Enthusiasm and Dedicated Efforts’.
She said when speaking about dedicated efforts; teachers are at the heart of education recovery.
“Therefore, we rely on our parents, teachers and learners to have specific action plans with dedicated efforts to ensure those actions plans are achieved,” she said.
In this vein, the academic year will see the return of the rationalised curriculum, which is a response to the pandemic.
“We thus expect more outbreaks in schools and possible school closures depending on the context and available infrastructure, behaviours and attitudes,” the ministry said.
Moreover, the ministry said schools have a task to address the learning gap for 2020 and 2021 caused by Covid-19.
“Support subjects must also be taught in 2022 for the psychosocial wellbeing of learners, and Covid-19 requires the reorientation of education systems to focus on skills rather than quantity.”
This year will only see two semesters, of which the first one will start on 10 January and conclude on 10 June.
The first semester will have a midterm break from 03 to 04 May, while the second semester will begin on 26 July until 15 December.
“In the first semester, grades 1 to 9 will follow continuous assessments and end-of-term test series will be written in May for grades 4 to 12,” said the ministry.
However, grades 9 to 12 will write mock examinations in September in the second-semester grade.
“This will be done to prepare learners for semi-external and national examinations.”
The year 2022 has opened with the Omicron variant still lingering around although cases have not led to fatalities.
The postponed exam has also cost the ministry roughly N$3 million which has been spent towards reprinting and logistics.