March 27, 2015: Some 261 students with a variety of special needs were among the 38,470 candidates who sat the two-day Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT) that ended today. The Test was postponed by a week due to the adverse effects on nearby schools of smoke from a fire at the Riverton City disposal site in St. Catherine.

 

The special needs included autism, broken limb, gunshot wound, blindness, visual impairment, hearing loss, sickle cell, learning disabilities, a cancer patient, and language barrier (in the case of two Chinese-speaking students). In all the cases the Ministry of Education ensured that facilities were in place to accommodate the administering of the examination.

 

One student, who was a patient in the Bustamante Hospital for Children, was allowed to write the examination in the presence of a visiting invigilator. Other forms of assistance from the Ministry included the provision of extra time, a reader, writer, prompter, interpreter, large font, braille and preferential seating.

 

 

The GSAT candidates with special needs were from the regions as follows: Region One-186, Region Two- 8, Region Three- 6, Region Four- 15, Region Five - 8 and Region Six - 38.