Usually at this time of year, the oral MATSEC exams start, however because of Covid, only the written ‘O’ and ‘A’ level exams will be held and are expected to start in June.
This was stated by the MATSEC director, Dario Pirotta in comments he gave to TVM, who said that the board is taking the necessary advice so that even the criteria on how assessments are carried out will be changed so that students are not penalised unjustly due to the circumstances brought about by the pandemic.
The ‘O’ and ‘A’ MATSEC exams will take place in June for the first session and in October for resits.
Dario Pirotta said the board has prepared a contingency plan in the eventually that schools have to remain closed because of Covid and online learning has to continue according to the measures which came Into effect at the beginning of this week.
“Usually exams start at this time of year in March, we used to begin with the orals and then there would be the listening comprehensions. At the end of April we used to hold the written exams. Now we have removed the orals because of the pandemic and the first written exams will take place on 1 June.”
Mr Pirotta explained that the MATSEC board has taken the advice of experts in the various subjects to change the syllabus so that students are not penalised. Although oral exams in languages will not be held, Mr Pirotta said that students can still obtain the maximum marks for this section as the criteria are being changed.
Asked about the various situations of vulnerable students who have chosen not to go physically to school and educational institutions since the beginning of the academic year, Mr Pirotta said that the learning process was already being held online before these measures were introduced.
“Schools have continued to offer online lessons to vulnerable students who have stayed home and on our part we are taking measures so that they can take their exams according to the instructions being given by the public health department”.
Mr Pirotta said that the exams will be held at a number of schools, while he explained that the maximum precautions to avoid the spread of Covid have been taken as happened during the September and December 2020 sessions. He added that plans might change according to the circumstances.