Grade 7 Entrance Tests Banned
4 December 2023
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Grade 7 Results to Determine Form 1 Placements via E-Map System**

In a significant shift, the Zimbabwean Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education has announced that Grade 7 results, set to be uploaded today on the e-map system, will be the sole criteria for selecting Form 1 learners in boarding schools. This decision aims to streamline the process, eliminating the need for entrance tests that often incurred additional costs for parents.

Mr Moses Mhike, the Permanent Secretary for Primary and Secondary Education, confirmed the functionality of the e-map system during the release of Grade Seven results at the Zimbabwe School Examinations Council (Zimsec) headquarters in Harare. He emphasized that headmasters are expected to begin selecting learners for Form 1 places using the online platform.

With nearly 400,000 pupils sitting for Grade Seven examinations and approximately 25,000 boarding places available, Mr Mhike acknowledged the need for infrastructure development in boarding schools. He urged the nation to address this growing demand for boarding school placements.

Mr Mhike took the opportunity to clarify that private entrance tests for high school admissions are illegal, emphasizing that Grade Seven results are the only legitimate criteria for entrance into high school.

Regarding potential fee increases for the upcoming academic year, Mr Mhike stressed that any adjustments must be authorized by the Government after gaining majority approval from parents. He highlighted the ministry’s commitment to assessing affordability, particularly considering civil servants’ paychecks, while ensuring the quality of the education system remains uncompromised.

The recently released Zimsec Grade Seven results indicated a notable improvement in the pass rate, reaching 45.5%, up from 40.7% the previous year. Girls, on average, outperformed boys with a pass rate of 49.56% compared to 41.21%. The examination board attributed this positive trend to the resumption of normal classes post-Covid-19, coupled with ongoing improvements by the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education, ensuring enhanced teaching for students.