Update On WAEC Marking Scheme For Public and Private Basic Schools

The West African Examinations Council (WAEC) wishes to respond to a misleading publication titled ‘Alleged ‘Mafia’ marking scheme for private basic schools’ on GhanaWeb dated Wednesday 26th April 2023.

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The publication reported that there were allegations of “a clandestine marking scheme set out by the key stakeholders in the education sector that have been endorsed by the government”.

The publication also alleged among others that two marking schemes are used, one for the private schools and one for the public schools because of politics.

Marking Process And Grading Of BECE Candidates

As the institution responsible for the conduct of the BECE, the Council would like to educate all stakeholders and members of the public about the marking process and grading for the BECE.

  1. WAEC follows a standardised procedure in the development, finalisation and application of marking schemes used in the marking of scripts for the BECE.
  2. Only one draft marking scheme is developed for each subject.
  3. The draft marking schemes (one for each subject) are finalised at National Preliminary Coordination Meetings which are attended by Chief Examiners and Zonal Team Leaders for each of the BECE subjects.
  4. The final marking schemes (one for each subject) are used to mark dummy scripts of candidates to ensure consistency in the award of marks.
  5. Zonal Coordination Meetings for Chief Examiners, Zonal Team Leaders, and Team Leaders are thereafter held at all marking venues throughout the country to once again, mark dummy scripts and ensure consistency in the award of marks.
  6. Main Coordination Meetings are finally held for Chief Examiners, Zonal Team Leaders, and Assistant Examiners at all marking venues used for the marking of BECE scripts. The marking schemes which were finalised earlier are the marking schemes that are used.
  7. At the end of the Coordination Meetings, all the examiners use the final marking scheme for each subject to mark the scripts of all candidates.
  8. Neither names of schools nor school status (private/public) are indicated on the envelopes containing the scripts of candidates.
  9. Scripts are swapped across the sixteen regions of the country to ensure that examiners in the various regions do not mark the scripts of candidates for their respective regions.
  10. The Stanine Grading System is used to grade candidates who sat for the BECE.
  11. Unlike teacher-made assessments, there are no fixed grade boundaries for the BECE. The grade boundaries for each subject vary from year to year depending on the performance of candidates.
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Meanwhile, the Head of the Test Development Division wishes to inform the public that, the Basic Education Certificate Examination and West African Senior School Certificate Examination questions are not difficult, the questions are related to what they have been taught by their teachers in the classroom.

The Council advises all candidates to study their books and desist from going into the examination hall with foreign material or engaging in any form of malpractice.

In conclusion, WAEC wishes to state that it adopts internationally accepted procedures in its operations and assures its numerous public that the Council’s marking processes are fair and representative of the performance of candidates.


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