Is the eleven plus a fair test for all children?
If your child passes comfortably then you may have a view on the inherent justice of the system. If your child needs to go through the appeal system then your attitude may be tempered by your own journey. If your child should happen to fail, for one reason or another, then you may feel a need to wonder if the examination is a just and impartial system.
School environment, for example, must probably play a large part in eleven plus selection. If your child is in a school where 29 out of 60 children will hopefully pass the examination, then if your child is near the top of the pile you will probably feel relatively confident about your child’s chances. If, however, your child is at a school where for two years running only two out of twenty eight children passed, then you may rightfully feel a little concerned.
But can parents ever feel complacent about the variables affecting selection at the eleven plus level? We can only surmise that there is a connection eleven plus scores, results in grammar school and the home back ground. The eleven plus, however, in its present mode, seems to offer advantages to the most promising – and thereby by almost certainly finding a place for these children in the warm embrace of the grammar school environment. If this continues to be the whole point of the examination then there is little point in arguing that the examination offers places to worthy children.
Children with uninterested parents, and a school culture set against the examination may find that grammar schools can not be reached.