Exclusive information that has reached our desk suggests that Ugandan universities and other tertiary institutions are considering cancelling the 2019-2020 academic year in the wake of the coronavirus (COVID-19).
The reports come just days after President Museveni gave universities permission to open up but only teach and examine final year students with the rest of the lot encouraged to stay at home and continue social distancing.
A source within the Ministry of Education has intimated to us that the idea of cancelling the academic year is selling like hot cake among administrative authorities within the ministry and universities.
“It is something we discuss almost everyday and the background is simple. You see, the other option would be to assess students based on courseworks and promote them to the next year but that is not how it works. That can only work for primary levels and lower secondary.” She said.
According to her, officials have constantly emphasised that a university semester is almost a qualification of it’s own and cannot be just watered down like that.
“For a university, every semester is a qualification on its own. It is like a final year and is very determinant in the student’s career and work ethics.” She said.
Our sources in different communications departments at universities have however refused to comment on the matter with several just saying that student’s should remain calm about promotion.
“Promotion from one year to another has to be fully determined according to the Credit Units of each course unit that a student is pursuing in a particular year. Nothing more or less. When we are cleared to open, the students will resume the semester from where they left it. They should not expect easier ways across.” A source at Makerere University said.