Search This Blog

Monday, August 07, 2006

Beyond your control – Are exams fair?

A number of parents will approach the 11+ examinations with some considerable degree of disquiet and concern. How far will their child’s future, at such a tender age, be affected by a largely irrevocable decision? Is the way we use the examination’s results really fair on all children?

If verbal reasoning tests are designed to give useful information about a child’s ability then the verbal reasoning element of the 11+ examinations may need to investigate areas different from normal classroom work. Children with reading problems or who are not fully fluent with the English language, may sometimes be at a disadvantage when attempting verbal reasoning tests.

There are many factors that are far outside the control of a teacher or parent. The death of a loved one or a family break up can affect performance. No matter how many practice papers a child may have done – if the child does not feel up to the examination then the content of the following years of education could be altered for ever.

A simple comprehension problem, however, could affect the progress of your child through school – and into the examination hall. The words `It is not fair - the dog ate my paper,’ will be offered by some children when they have not done as well as possible. Lots of quality reading may help to save the day.

No comments: