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National exams and scouting tests are expected to "return to normal" this year

December 07, 2021

Original Article: https://observador.pt/2021/09/27/exames-nacionais-e-provas-de-afericao-deverao-retomar-a-normalidade-este-ano/

The original article requires translation.

The national exams and the scouting tests should "return to normalcy" this year, including the rules for the final secondary exams, indicated this Monday the Secretary of State and Deputy of Education.

“Unless we have again — hopefully not and everything indicates that we don't — some exceptionality, the path is to return to normality with regard to external evaluation as well, “said João Costa, on the sidelines of the presentation of the results of three studies carried out by the Institute of Educational Assessment (IAVE).

In the last two academic years, the external assessment tests underwent changes due to the Covid-19 pandemic, which led to the suspension of the scouting tests and final exams for the 9th year.

The Government chose to keep only the national exams for the 11th and 12th grades, which, however, were no longer mandatory and were only used for admission to higher education and, last academic year, for the purpose of improving the internal classification.

Asked about the functioning of the tests this year, in which the executive wants to return to normality, as much as possible, in schools, João Costa said that this intention also extends to external evaluation.

"The school calendar is clear and provides for all tests to be carried out", said the Secretary of State, stressing that this will only be confirmed if the pandemic imposes exceptional measures again.

As for secondary exams, João Costa said that it is not only the Ministry of Education's responsibility, but also the supervision of Higher Education, but he pointed out that on the executive's side, “everything is designed so that we can have a normal school year, with the normal rules ”.

This means that the exams should once again be mandatory for the conclusion of that cycle of education, counted for the internal assessment, and without the exceptional format of the last two years, which included a set of optional questions in the tests in which the best answer was counted.

The school calendar, published in July in the Diário da República, provides for the holding of tests for the assessment of basic education between 2 and 11 May (2nd year) and 17 and 27 May (5th and 8th years) . The 1st phase of the 9th grade final exams takes place between the 17th and the 23rd of June and in the case of the secondary between the 17th of June and the 6th of July.

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