We know a girl who has had Standardised Scores over 120 all the years of her school life.
Suddenly her marks dropped in one test at school to 115.
She fell from ` dead cert’ to `boarder line’. Just a few short weeks to the 11+ examinations.
What can be done?
More lessons? More papers? More work? A severe talking too?
These solutions are all too simplistic. We need to be bolder and it looks as if a revival of the ducking stool may help to find the answer.
The ducking stool was used years ago for women who did too much scolding. A scold was a woman who argued and quarrelled too much. She was tried by her peers, often the neighbours, and then simply dumped in water until she cried for peace.
The reason for the drop in marks, it transpired, was quite simple. This was a school test.
There had been a little happening in the playground and our super able girl had been involved. The tears and the recriminations had been enough to put her off. She had begun the examination feeling upset and put upon.
So we can’t blame her school ,we can’t blame her parents, we can’t blame the girl’s friends, we can’t even blame the blameless girl.
We can only hope for a right royal ducking for the senseless bully. Will this solve the problem? Possibly not but all of us may feel better!