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Thursday, February 12, 2009

Eleven Plus Selection

Way back in 1948, when tests were being used to select children for grammar school, there was also discussion about tests that would select children for `trade schools’.

General tests of intelligence still rely heavily on verbal ability. There is one county where eleven plus children are selected purely on the results of verbal reasoning tests. Other selection tests use mathematics and / or non verbal reasoning – as well as verbal reasoning.

If parents were wondering what sort of school would best suit their child, then some parents could be grateful for a test that did not rely too heavily on verbal reasoning. A practical test could be much more useful in predicting future success in a range of non academic subjects.

If a primary school in Year Six needs to spend time in preparing children for SATs tests, then there may be little time to spend preparing children for practical tests. After all it would be difficult for an eleven year old child to try to decide on what type of comprehensive school would be suitable if he or she had not been exposed to a wide range of occupations and hobbies. Even comprehensives and academies are becoming specialist schools.

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