DepEd releases NCAE results to 1.3 million students
Pasig City (19 March) — Department of Education (DepEd) Secretary Jesli A. Lapus today announced the release of the results of the National Career Assessment Examination (NCAE), a test administered last January 17 to 1.3 million fourth year high school students in order to help them assess their career options after high school.
Emphasis on Career Guidance. "Each examinee is given a Certificate of Rating," Lapus explained. "And this will give the student an accurate measure of his potential for college, technical and vocational school, or entrepreneurship."
DepEd's National Educational Testing and Research Center (NETRC) Director Nelia Benito reported that certificates have been sent to the various DepEd Schools Division offices throughout the country, which are assigned to distribute the said certificates to the schools.
At the same time, Benito stressed that school guidance counselors have been trained by the department to assist students in interpreting their respective ratings.
"DepEd conducted a series of seminars on career guidance based on the NCAE," Benito explained. "And this was attended by guidance counselors nationwide."
According to Lapus, the results of the test will be used primarily for career guidance.
"This is not like the old NCEE (National Career Entrance Examination) which was used solely as a basis for admission to college," Lapus stressed. "The NCAE is a guide for students, so that they will really find a proper fit for themselves when they enter the job or entrepreneurial markets."
The education secretary contemplates that the NCAE will be made a prerequisite for post-secondary studies by school year 2009-2010 with the passage of a law.
Lapus, meanwhile, stressed the importance of the NCAE in educational policy.
"Beyond using the NCAE results as a tool for students, we hope to use the results as a tool for research," Lapus explained. "And this has tremendous impact not only on basic education, we expect it to affect both higher education and tech-voc education."
"I'm sure that these results can also be used from the labor standpoint," Lapus added.
Lapus noted that the NCAE helps monitor the flow of students to post-secondary learning institutions as it too assesses each student's potential contribution to national development. He asks schools to look into the NCAE results so that appropriate interventions can be instituted.
At the same time, Lapus stressed the importance of the NCAE to scholarships.
"Donors and benefactors can use the NCAE as a tool for assessing the viability of their beneficiaries," Lapus pointed out. "By assessing the student's ratings, they can determine if he or she has a better chance of completing a college education or a tech-voc education."
"Donors must give priority to underprivileged students who have performed well in particular tests," Lapus added. "This ensures that their investments are not wasted."
The NCAE results revealed that 22,267 students who belong to families with annual incomes below P150,000, the current poverty threshold, are among the highest performers in the GSA, with Very High to Excellent scores (98-99+ percentile ranks). Meanwhile, 33,444 poor students also received very high scores in the Tech-Voc subtest.
"We are very happy with the conduct of this year's NCAE," Lapus said. "Our efforts here have paid off and they will continue to pay off as we look at ways of improving the test."
"We want our children to receive a basic education that is relevant to their needs," Lapus explained. "To many, this means jobs. And this starts with us helping them find the right career path— one that is available in the market and one that best suits their particular skills and propensities."
"The results of the tests will really help students determine their appropriate career paths," Lapus added. "The NCAE is by far the best tool our young graduates can use to properly assess their own skills and inclinations. And this will enable them to make more effective career decisions. I enjoin parents as well as tertiary schools to be guided by NCAE scores so that our education system can become more rational and deliberate."