By TIMOTHY KAMBILIMA
WITH the school leaving and general certificate of education (GCE) examinations starting in the first week of October, there is need to advise our dear pupils not to panic.
By this time all the pupils sitting for examinations should be ready to write with no difficulty at all.
It is important to remind pupils to stick to what they have been taught in class and avoid falling into the temptations to engage in malpractices.
It is during this time that all sorts of unscrupulous people will come with all sorts of papers and materials which they will try to sell to unsuspecting pupils or their parents.
It is equally important to remind parents not to panic by moving up and down looking for the so-called â€œleakagesâ€ for their children.
In case parents and pupils have forgotten, the Government and the Examinations Council of Zambia (ECZ) have put in stringent measures to curb exam leakages in Zambia.
Those who will deliberately engage in exam malpractices using leaked question papers will be doing at a great risk.
Let the pupils go into the examination rooms equipped with whatever knowledge they have been given by the teachers since 2012 when they made it to Grade 10.
I strongly feel that after learning biology, English and history for three years, pupils should have no difficulties passing the final examinations.
Teachers should also use the remaining three weeks to make final checks with their pupils to make sure they are ready for the examinations.
This is the time for all serious-minded pupils to go through past examination papers and get most questions correct.
I believe that no teacher can fail to cover the syllabus adequately for a period of three years.
In fact our pupils should not feel discouraged because of the poor performance in the provincial or school-based mock examinations.
Similarly, even those who did well must not be carried away by the six or seven points they scored in the just-ended mock examinations that took place countrywide.
What is very important is to remain focused on the examinations coming early next month.
These examinations are very important as they will determine the future prospects of our children.
They will determine whether one will go to college or university, or join the army of unemployed youths out there. The ball is in the court of the pupils.
All the pupils who have planned very well have planned to pass the examinations. On the other hand those who have failed to plan very well have planned to fail the exams.
Remember, failing to plan is planning to fail.
Wishing all the pupils writing the final examinations next month all the best.
The author is a Luanshya-based historian.
By TIMOTHY KAMBILIMA