Some of the important schools standards that set such as:
i. high rate of students attendance in class
ii. all students are to wear school uniforms during school hours
iii. all students must achieve an average of 80% and above on all subjects school common assessments
iv. all students have future career goals
Activities for each standard
i. providing a conducive learning in the classroom through a more interactive approach of teaching that is fun for students, attendance competition for all students in every class where a prize or awards to be granted for the best attendance students on a termly basis.
ii. checking of students in every class to ensure that they wear a uniform, orientation and awareness of students with the school rules where wearing a school uniform in school is compulsory.
iii. arrange remedial class for low performing students, teachers to prepare well daily lesson plans and prepare a well structured scheme of work.
iv. inviting guest speakers from the employment sector like public and business sectors to give a career talk to students. Hosting or organizing a career day for students that is part of the school calendar activities.
Good question to elaborate more on the standards set by schools. Most standards are articulated in the school policy and when students and teachers are familiarized with those standards, they are just becoming understood expectations or norms in the schools.
In our institute, our program (engineering) has been accredited by Engineering New Zealand. It means all the courses and contexts need to follow some standards. The LOs for each course must be aligned to the standard learning outcomes based on the Washington Accord.
Schools have cut off marks when the students enrol in year 9. The school makes sure that the student has achieved the required mark to get enrolled in the school. This intends the school to monitor the school ranking In the district or on national level. Number of percentage pass and highest Mark determines the school’s quality and quantity in the national ranking. Secondly is the attendance. The is percentage attendance level that a student needs to meet. If the student fails to meet the level necessary actions are taken inorder for the students to leave up to the school expectations.
Say for University where I teach, there are minimum entry requirement for certain programs, for eg. Bachelor of Engineering (Hons) in Mechanical has MER:
Successful completion of the Fiji Year 13 Certificate Examination, with an aggregate of 250 out of 400 and obtained marks as follows: pass in English, Mathematics, Physics, and Technical Drawing/Applied Technology/Chemistry or any other Science or Technology subject. The school and college may review the above MER requirements at any time as/when required upon approval in SAB and CAB. Students with equivalent regional/international results are also considered on a case-by-case basis subject to a review process; OR
Successful completion of Foundation Science with a GPA of 3.0 or more; OR
Successful completion of Diploma in Engineering (Mechanical) (Level 6) as per articulation pathway requirements; OR
Successful completion of Trade Diploma in Engineering (Mechanical); OR
Students with TVET qualifications are considered via the articulation pathway. Students with an FQF Level 7 degree will be considered via the Recognition of Prior Learning process.
Applicants may also be admitted to the programme who may not meet the requirement on the years of continuous education progression, but who are able to demonstrate their ability to succeed in programmes at these levels on the basis of their maturity, work experience or prior learning, have acceptable secondary school education and are 21 years of age. This will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
I suppose the requirements you mention for the Bachelor of Engineering (Hons) are meant to enable students to attain certain levels of competence upon graduation. That is a key quality issue and many universities set such requirements.
However, in some contexts, it has been noted that high school qualifications are not a reliable predictor for performance at university level. Do you experience this problem in your context, Danial?
Some important set by the university in which I am involved with to set standards are:
Learning Outcomes: The program should clearly define and communicate the learning outcomes that students are expected to achieve upon completion of the program. Curriculum Design: The program’s curriculum should be well-designed to ensure that it covers all the essential topics and skills required for students to achieve the learning outcomes. Teaching and Learning Strategies: The program should use a variety of effective teaching and learning strategies, including interactive and engaging classroom activities, the use of technology, and opportunities for students to apply their learning.
To achieve these standards, the university implements various activities such as designing and updating the curriculum, providing professional development opportunities for staff members, and incorporating technology into teaching
My school is identified as a school of focus since, we are a low performing school in attaining 5 passes at CXC level. We have been getting an increasing number of 0 to 30 % students from the Standard 5 level when they enter form one. Many students can read at standard one level and have many learning disabilities which are evident but they have not been assessed by SSSD- Support services. They are also above the average age of the normal age for form 1s.
The classes are 30 to 40 students in small classes, we have no math interventionist or reading assistant.
So, we are closely monitored to see if we are using an adapted syllabus which is not beneficial to students since they have reading issues, behavioral issues and learning challenges. There seems to be a disconnect with the monitoring system and really finding and addressing the root causes of the low performance of students. Many students are faced with socio- economic issues, gangs in the community where they lived, no father figure, lack of positive role models and many more issues that we are still finding out about when misbehavior happens.
The school has School Based Management team to look at school plan to help develop plan for the school.
There is a SBIT - school intervention team, this team has met to identify how they can help the students but there is only one person to visit the district.
There are regular meeting with the Curriculum team from the Ministry of education, but unfortunately they are not trying to understand what are the real issues. The school has shortage of furniture, resources for teachers and and room location for classes since the school is old and in need of critical repairs.
The departments have action plan and achievable goals to improve pass rate with a realistic goal.
Professional day training- to assist with training in identified issues- such as classroom management and delivery of the curriculum.
HODs monitor teachers using clinical supervision instruments and class visits, patrols and students’ notebooks and assessments.
Checking punctuality and regularity reports and monitoring teachers in each department.
Trying to lobby for the technical vocational areas where no replacement have been sent.
Since, our students have displayed skills in practical areas, having these areas as options keep students engaged and interested in school can motivate them to be regular in school.
Deans have been working really hard to improve punctuality in students by talking to parents and students about the importance of being on time.
Th school have now explored a wide cross section of extra curriculum activities to get students involved. The school has been doing really well in some of these areas and excelling in many sporting activities locally and regionally.
But low academic performance and increased indiscipline continues to plague the school, and the teachers are displaying low morale and motivation.
The many issues faced by the school cause the goals to be reassessed and the process to be redone to be realistic.
The school targets to achieve 90% transition rate to secondary school
Provide mock national examinations
Support weaker learners to improve their performance
Provide remedial teaching
Hold meetings with guardians and students for setting targets to be achieved.
Some of the standard set by the institution i am involving are.
Minimum pass mark every session for progression to the next academic level.
In every semester, students are expected to have a Grade Point Average of at least 2. 0, in a session, the mark is expected to move up higher but never goes below that. Failure of which will lead to Withdrawer due to poor academic performance.
The institution set very high moral standard in terms of dressing, hair make and other areas that needs scrutiny
Continuous Assessment. Before any examination, it is expected that facilitators, lecturers and all academic staff conduct at least three test for students in order for them to qualify to sit foe examination. There are minimum scores requires from such students.
Class attendance. Students are mandated to attend class at least 70% before qualifying to sit for examination…
The Internal Quality Assurance (IQA) officers are saddled with the responsibility of ensuring that academic staff does not miss their classes. They are expected to be in class at least 70%
In my school, the important aspects of quality are:
passing rate to be 70 percent or more in all sorts of assessments
-daily attendance for students
-Providing conducive learning environment for all and using improvised teaching aids and manipulatives to suit the individual needs
Such activities which are implemented are having Literacy and Numeracy Interventional Programs especially for needy ones.Awards is given for the Displined groups before home dismissal and also attendance competition for all students where a best attendance student is rewarded on a monthly and termly basis.In this case, they are motivated to be regular to school and not to miss any lessons just for the betterment of our children and our nation as a whole.
I have seen that having a meeting with the parents guardian and students is so helpful and this really motivates them.Since Education is a Three Legged Stool so we must join hands together for the betterment of our future generations. Thank You so much Sir for your quality expression.