Educational flurry? Looks like I’m not the only one… #gove
I don’t even live in England, but I feel the need to have a wee rant.
Gove,( the Education man in the government) (today, at least… we’ll see how that goes) has decided to scrap about half of the English school exam system and have a system based on … single exam summative assessment with no coursework or account taken of effort/work during the year.
All your educational eggs in one basket.
Not only that, the exams are going to be difficult.
Which is fine, if the children are able to pass them – but the reality is that, if the exams are difficult, only about two sevenths (OK so that is arbitrary and I am guessing) of the children will be able to pass them. That means that more than half of the children will spend the majority of their school career facing failure down the barrel of a summative gun.
I never thought I would look at Standard Grade through rose tinted spectacles – but it was A GREAT THING. The media used to moan that 99% of kids used to pass it. Of course they did. It was calibrated so that no matter how little you could do, you could get credit for what you could do, even if it was no great shakes – and your future college lecturer or employer would know how literate you were. And it was a huge achievement to gain a grade 6, even although it meant that you had serious issues with literacy. To get a 6, not only did you have to overcome huge difficulties with reading and writing, you had to show consistent effort over two years. If you got a 6 in S Grade it was the best you could do and you should be CELEBRATED!!! for it! Go you!
OK OK so, only grades 3, 2, and 1 meant that you could read and write WELL – but at least we knew.
With a hard PASS/FAIL exam, we only know who does well. We don’t know SQUAT about everyone else that has burst a gut trying their hardest but not being given an appropriate chance to show what they CAN do, even within that skill set.
All I am saying: Calibrate. Celebrate.