Over Five hundred thousand students at the basic level are partaking in the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) which begins across the country today.
16,871 schools are presenting students for the exams which will last for five days.
Out of the 517,332 candidates who will write the examination, 263,616 are males, while 153,716 are females.
Meanwhile, the West Africa Examination Council has banned the use of cellular devices by supervisors during the exams.
According to WAEC, the ban had become necessary after the results of a research which established that adults were primary culprits in examination malpractice at all levels of education in the country.
In addition, it said, no supervisor or invigilator would be allowed, under any circumstance, to supervise or invigilate candidates from schools to which the supervisor or invigilator was affiliated.
The Head of the Ghana National Office of WAEC, Mrs Wendy E. Addy-Lamptey, said ordinarily, a candidate would not go out of his or her way to look out for ‘Apɔ’ or external help to pass well in an examination, be it the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) or the West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE).
“It is adults who are pushing these little ones to fall into the trap of examination malpractice,” she stated.
She further expressed concern over the fact that there was too much interference by adults in examinations which, she noted, was affecting the performance of candidates.
Out of the total number, Ashanti Region has the highest number of 104,461 candidates, followed by the Greater Accra Region with 90,584, while Upper West has the least number of 13,109 candidates for the exams.
Mrs Agnes Teye-Cudjoe, the Head of Public Relations, West Africa Examination Council in an interview with otecnews, said all was set for the commencement of the exams. She said all stakeholders involved in the exams were briefed on the operations to ensure smooth and peaceful exams.
Mrs Teye-Cudjoe cautioned supervisors who supported in examination malpractices to desist from the act, adding that anybody caught would face the full rigour of the law.
“We are informed that when the supervisors get hold of the question papers before the exams, they open it and solve it for the students,” she added.
She reiterated that supervisors are to open the question papers 15 minutes to the time (0900 hours).
Mrs Teye-Cudjoe said all security arrangements had been put in place and were optimistic that the exams would end successfully.
She advised the candidates to focus on their studies and do independent work and avoid any examination malpractices.
The candidates will write English and Religious and Moral Education today and end with Social Studies.