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Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Timing of Eleven Plus Examinations

One of the main arguments against the Eleven Plus examinations is that they take place on a certain day at a certain time.

Recently the Government announced that SATs tests would be offered to children when the teacher thought that the children were ready. This will require some flexibility on the part of the teachers, the children, the parents and the relevant authorities – not least the grammar schools themselves.

One problem with Eleven Plus tests is that results can be affected by physical conditions on the day. We often hear parents say: “We will just have to see what happens on the day.”

`On the day’ there could be problems with:

Major physical conditions – for example illness.

A minor ailment like a cold or a stomach upset could lower concentration.

The temperature of the room could affect some children. (Some like it hot, some like it cold!)

Some children could be affected by an unfamiliar desk or chair.

As the day moves on the light in the room could change – and affect performance.

Parents could try to `gee their children up too much’.

Siblings could pick a fight.

Nerves could creep in.

So the suggestion is that children should be able to take the examination when they feel they are ready – mentally and physically.

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