25 Oct 2013

Teachers in American Samoa failing exams

4:10 pm on 25 October 2013

New data shows public school teachers in American Samoa, like their students, are struggling to pass their exams.

According to data presented by the Department of Education at the education summit today, less than half of teachers are making the grade for the Praxis, a series of tests taken by teachers as part of the certification process.

The assistant director for Teacher Quality, Diane Ameperosa, says the Praxis measures academic skills in reading, writing and maths.

She says teacher scores collected from 2007 to 2011 show 41 percent of teachers made the passing score for maths, 38 percent the writing test, and just 26 percent the reading test.

"It is not the students' fault, it's a systemic problem. We need to look at the system. Whatever you change in part of the system, the whole system is affected."

Diane Ameperosa says 41 percent of public school teachers have no teaching qualification, and the majority are teaching out of content areas.