National Education Assessment- assessing and monitoring school education system

For the first time, the Bhutan Council for School Examinations and Assessment (BCSEA) is carrying out a nationwide assessment of students in grade III. This is being done under the National Education Assessment Project. More than 4,600 sampled students from grade III across 184 sampled schools are participating in the assessment. The project will assess and monitor the country’s school education system. The assessment will end next month.

Students are assessed on Dzongkha and English reading literacy and mathematical literacy. Apart from this, BCSEA will also administer students’ value and background questionnaires.

According to Arjun Kumar Gurung, the Project Manager of the National Education Assessment “This data is going to be very good data which will not only help us to understand the cognitive rigour of the children but also what values and attitude the child possess”. He added the background questionnaire will help understand “what are the factors affecting the learning outcomes of the children and what can be done to address these issues and what can be done by different stakeholders.”

Apart from the students, teachers from each sample school teaching grade III including principals and dzongkhag and thromde education officers will also participate in the assessment.

The national education assessment will be carried out after every three years at various key stages of grades III, VI and IX.

“So, what happens in 2024 is, we will capture a new cohort of grade III and the same cohort of 2021 would have reached in grade VI,” said the Project Manager. “That way, it would help us to measure the learning outcomes or the standard of the education system.”

The findings of the assessment will be released next year. The assessment project worth Nu 35 M is funded by the Global Partnership for Education.

The National Education Assessment was carried out since 2004 but there was no framework to assess indicators relevant to the Bhutanese school education system. Accordingly, the education ministry launched the framework last year.

Sonam Pem

Edited by Yeshi Gyaltshen

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