Curbing examination malpractice in schools

Examination malpractice has become very rampant in Nigerian schools, and continues to degrade the standard of education in the country.

The situation has become increasingly  worrisome considering how the mangnitute it  is affecting the performance of students  socially and academically.

Indeed, education is considered to be the foundation of development, and if properly handled through the laid down procedures, whenever something goes different from normal procedures, the results might not be  good. The situation whereby Nigeria lags behind in development is rooted in the decay in the education sector which is full of corruption and all forms of malpractice.

This situation badly irritates me because the authorities seem to have folded their arms and continue to look at the issue without taking the proper measures. Virtually, the issue of examination malpractice has taken over all levels of education in the country, and especially in secondary schools.

During national  examinations, most teachers help their students by writing answers on the board, dictating to them or preparing worked answers for them to copy, in order to carve good names for their schools.

Sometimes, some students are hired to write exams for others. Students take textbooks and swap papers in examination halls, even to the  knowledge of some of their teachers.

Worse stil, miracles centres are now introduced everywhere, so much so that even those who cannot read and write can get nine credits, while those who are not able to write at the centres still pay the centres to provide them  the answers prior to the examination dates, hence they have it already, and the examination authorities and related agencies are aware of such centres but do nothing to curb the menace.

Laziness on the part of students is another  remote causes of examination malpractice in Nigerian schools. Nowadays, students find it difficult to study, they do not have little time  to revise or study their books either at home or in school. Examination malpractice which started on a low trend has become more pronounced, involving persons other than the candidates. It has become more advanced and sophisticated.

Within the past two to three years decades cases of examination malpractice have become too rampant in virtually all levels of education in the country, with the secondary school being most alarming. WAEC or NECO withholds the results of quite a large number of schools found to have been involved in examination malpractice in the annual examinations.

Traced to it roots, there are apparent pointers to the alarming fact that parents, school authorities, examination invigilators, examination officers and amazingly too,  maybe security agents sent to schools by the examination boards to assure sanity in the conduct of examinations collaborate to allow examination malpractices. Parents have a vital role to play in their children’s education. As a parent, you have to stand for your  child’s education because you are your child’s first and must important teacher, especially mothers!

The mother spends much of her time taking care of her child, she knows her child more than the father. So, mothers should put an eye on their children. Whenever your child closes from school, after freshening up, you should ask the child what he/she was taught in school. You will help improve your child’s education by encouraging him/her to read and revise what he/she was taught in school, encourage your child to be responsible and work independently, make sure your child gets the homework done or find home help for your child if needed.

Furthermore, when parents and families are involved in their children’s education, the children do better and have better feelings about going to school.

Staff of educational institutions need to be adequately paid to promote hard work and commitment to duty or the government and school administrators should constantly organize seminars and workshops to educate  students, lecturers, parents and administrators on the consequences of examination malpractice.

Sabitiyu is of the Department of Mass Communication,  University of Maiduguri


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