…says questions randomly distributed to candidates based on established metrics
By Adeola Badru
THE Oyo State Teaching Service Commission, TESCOM, has countered the allegation of ‘Christianising’ the CBT examination organised to screen applicants for teaching appointments in Oyo State, explaining that questions were randomly distributed to candidates based on established metrics.
The rejoinder came against the backdrop of the eyebrow raised by a Nigerian Islamic human rights association, the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), yesterday, accusing the officials of the Oyo State Teaching Service Commission (TESCOM) of Christianising the CBT examination.
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MURIC, in a statement by its Director, Professor Ishaq Akintola, alleged that Muslim candidates were made to answer questions on biblical stories and denounced the imposition of bible questions on Muslims.
However, in a statement made available to newsmen on Saturday morning, signed by the Permanent Secretary of TESCOM in Oyo State, Mrs Grace Olabisi Oderinde, maintained that the commission has observed that some Christians candidates and other religions had some Islamic Religious Knowledge contents in their assessment.
She then revealed that after a review of the daily insight by the commission, the board and management have decided that affected Muslim candidates would not be graded for the five (5) inadvertently CRK contents found in their assessment and the same treatment would be applicable to affected candidates of other religious affiliations, adding that the assessment would be ranked over Forty-five (45) instead of over Fifty(50) due to five(5) religious contents.
The statement released by the commission read further: “The attention of the Oyo State Post Primary Schools Teaching Service Commission (TESCOM) has been drawn to the publication in print and social media platforms by Muslim Right Concern (MURIC) on August 14, 2020, regarding the ongoing Computer Based Test (CBT) being conducted as part of the recruitment process for teachers into secondary schools in Oyo state regarding the inclusion of Christian Religious Knowledge contents as part of the assessment for Muslim candidates and other religious affiliations in Computer Studies and Physics subjects conducted on Tuesday, 11th August 2020.”
“The Commission enormously values the uniqueness and diversity of candidates as well as community and therefore understands that people from diverse religious affiliations need to work together in a safe and respectful environment. However, by virtue of the technology employed to assess the candidates(CBT), questions were randomly distributed to candidates based on established metrics. i.e Computer randomly distributed various questions to different candidates. We also observed that some Christians candidates and other religion had some Islamic Religious Knowledge contents in their assessment.”
“TESCOM’s management and the CBT consultants usually conduct a high-level meeting at the end of the day to evaluate the daily assessment with a view to analysing and improving our service delivery. We usually review analytics and valuable insights from our daily report of the assessment and take proactive measures to ensure standardisation, fairness and inclusion of all our applicants.”
“The Commission currently has several full and part-time Muslim Board members while three out of the four Directors are Muslims.”
“Arising from the above and based on our analytics, TESCOM Board and management has decided that affected Muslim candidates will not be graded for the five (5) inadvertently CRK contents found in their assessment and the same treatment will be applied to affected candidates of other religious affiliations –The assessment will be ranked over Forty-five (45) instead of over Fifty(50) due to five(5) religious contents.”
“This unanimous decision was made to remove all imagined or real bias, and in the overall interest of inclusion and diversity while the Management and Board are passionately committed to evaluating the ongoing CBT process with a view to addressing all necessary concerns.”
“The Board and Management of TESCOM wishes to assure MURIC, all stakeholders and indeed the entire citizenry of Oyo State that we shall not deviate from the good vision of His Excellency, Engr. Seyi Makinde in transforming the education sector in Oyo state to greater heights and to promote inclusion and diversity in the teaching sector of the pacesetter state,” the statement reiterated.