11-year-old Joshua Wilson-Dumont of Westmorland Junior School has topped this year’s Caribbean Primary Exit Assessment (CPEA) with a score of 481 points.
“I knew my ability but I didn’t want to be too over confident, so I expected anything to happen,” said young Joshua, who broke out in tears along with his proud father, John Dumont, who was on hand to witness the excitement when the announcement was made to the Westmorland Grade 6 class on Monday morning.
Wilson-Dumont emerged at the top of the field from Joshua Noel (477) of St. Mary’s Junior School who placed 2nd and St. George’s Anglican Senior School student, Mya Carter who placed third with 474 points.
Westmorland had a full pass rate with its 27 students who sat the exams.
Joshua, whose dream is to become an engineer, will be moving on to the Westmorland Secondary School on the same compound.
The calm and well composed student shared with reporters the thoughts that ran through his mind when it was announced that he had secured the top spot from the 2,006 students who wrote the assessment on the island.
“I was thinking that I did such a good job and I was so happy (that) I cried with my dad,” he said.
Joshua attributed hard work for his success in the exams.
He said: “It was a lot of work because I do swimming too, so sometimes I have to stop swimming to come and study so it was a lot. It was very hard”.
The top student gave assurances that he plans to be on the “top of my game” on entering secondary school in September as he knows “everybody will be trying to be the best when we get into form 5.”
The Administrative Dean and Acting Supervisor of Westmorland Junior School, Jessie Martin, described Joshua as being a very calm, studious and academic child” who is also into swimming and has represented the island at regional swimming events on 3 occasions.
Commenting on the CPEA results, the proud school dean said: “I expect my students to do their utmost best in whatever subject area and it’s up to the children in their performances to do well.”
THE NEW TODAY was able to catch up with Joshua Noel of St. Mary’s Junior School who will be attending Presentation Brothers College (PBC) in September.
The student who is the son of top St. Paul’s steelband player and arranger, Cecil Noel and his wife, confessed that the exam was a bit “challenging” for him.
He said the Social Studies test, which was only included in the Assessment this year, was the most challenging among the subject areas.
“The Social Studies was so tough. When I saw those questions about Hindu and Muslims, (I said to myself) yes, we knew them but not in depth like how they asked us,” said Joshua, who was surprised at his 2nd place performance.
When asked, he told reporters that the results showed that “I can perform at a good level and do other things. This education can help me to become what I want in the future, which is a professional footballer.”
He advised future CPEA students to “just stick to the work and try to do the best” they can.
“Study when you have time to, not just go on TV,” he added.
His Grade 6 Teacher Christopher Glasgow who spoke with this newspaper said, it was a pleasure working with Joshua.
“When you have a student like Joshua, it motivates you…whenever work is given he is always happy to get it done if he doesn’t understand any concept he will be the first one to come and ask for an explanation and you can always count on him to complete his work and complete it on time”, the teacher said.
St Mary’s attained a complete pass rate from the 20 students who sat the exam.
The other top student in the island, Mya will be attending St. Joseph’s Convent, St. George’s, was not at school when the results came out on Monday due to illness.
THE NEW TODAY was able to catch up with the young student the following day at school and she was still showing excitement over her performance.
She said she was very proud of her accomplishment in the exams.
Her Grade 6 teacher, Joycelyn De Gale told reporters who visited the school that Mya’s performance came as no surprise.
“I was even hoping for her to be second or first because she has done very well (and) I am happy for her…Mya has always been an acute child in her learning, she studied hard, participated and was very disciplined study wise, attitude and behaviour and that says a lot about how far she would reach in life,” De Gale said.
THE NEW TODAY also spoke via telephone on Tuesday with May’s mother Ketura Carter, who said her daughter’s achievement is “well deserved”.
“I feel very proud because I know she worked very hard attending lessons up to the last day”, said the mother who works with the Audit Department of government at Mt Wheldale in St. George’s.
A total of 111 students at St. George’s Anglican sat the CPEA with only three failures and with five other students placing in the top 50.
According to the Ministry of Education, a total of 2, 026 students registered for the CPEA – 1084 males and 942 females.
Out of the 2,006, who wrote the assessment only 1808 were assigned to secondary schools, a figure which represents 916 males and 892 females.
This means that 198 students, comprising 45 females and 153 males are being retained at the primary school level and will be afforded another opportunity to write the assessment in 2019.