Can you imagine a Local Authority sending out a questionnaire to the parents of eleven plus children? Imagine too if the children were also asked a series of questions about the eleven plus? Suppose the results of the questionnaires given scores and these totals were added to other test based eleven plus results?
A whole new industry would grow up offering advice to children and their parents about how to answer questionnaires. Children would need to be taught how to recognise the essence of a question even if the question was couched in un-sensitive words. Children may also need to be able to cope with unsatisfactory questions along the lines of, “Do you think that the eleven plus is a good idea and do you think that you should be allowed unlimited time in an examination?” Of course many parents would immediately latch onto a question of this nature and argue that it is generally desirable for a question to be confined to a single issue.
Questions for parents may need to avoid technical words and jargon. Some parents may prefer for a word like `exigencies’ to be used when trying to draw parents whether there was a need for immediate action. Naturally any Times crossword solvers would probably prefer to feel stretched rather than feel that any communication from the Authority was dumbed down.