Taking your first exam during COVID-19, between hope and anxiety
Antsa and Alexana will take their first official exam this year
Two little girls Antsa Valérie, 10 years old and Alexana, 11 years old respectively from Farafangana and Manakara allowed us to discover their world during an interview for a few minutes. Both will take their first official exam this year, exactly this Tuesday, September 08, 2020.
The school year has been long and stressful for the two little girls as for other thousands of children who had to stop school and spend nearly three months or more at home, following the health emergency which has been effective in Madagascar since March 23. The decision was meant to avoid contamination and circulation of the virus. Since then, schools were closed and some of them only reopened around July.
For Antsa, she had to deal with the change of pace in Farafangana while Alexana had to strengthen her protection at home located in Tanambe, Manakara. "I was very scared at first because the announcement was so sudden that it turned a lot of things upside down," said Antsa, who had to cope with the change. She spends her spare time taking care of her henhouse or reading for entertainment. Her dream of becoming an economist like her father is very important to her. "I try to stay the course despite the challenges," she says. Her parents help her keep up the pace.
As for Alexana, she struggled to keep up with the radio program that provided distance learning for children. Our two young daughters will take the CEPE exam on Tuesday, September 08 to get their pass for secondary school – a long-awaited moment. Both remain optimistic despite everything. They gave it their all in the last review sessions at school. "I have to succeed at all costs", explained Alexana, enrolled in public primary school.
Thousands of students will take the CEPE exam on Tuesday, particularly those from the Regions of Atsimo Atsinanana, Haute Matsiatra, Amoron’i Mania, Vatovavy Fitovinany and Atsimo Andrefana. Those from other areas have already finished last Tuesday, the results of which were published last weekend.
UNICEF Madagascar is supporting the reopening of schools, where all students can safely continue their learning. During the health emergency, UNICEF supported the broadcasting of radio programs for CP1 and CP2 classes, produced posters to promote hygiene and disinfected over 98,000 classrooms, not forgetting the setting-up of 28 000 hand washing facilities in schools.