Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Quote of the Day (dumbed-down-edition)

Katharine Birbalsingh, a deputy head at a South London school, speaking yesterday at the Conservatives conference, revealed that even children know exams are being dumbed down:

"When I give them past exam papers to do from 1998, they groan and beg for a 2005 or 6 paper, because they know it'll be easier. The idea of benchmarking children and letting them know how they compare to their peers is considered so poisonous by us teachers that we don't ever do it."

Whatever your views on education, its well worth watching her full speech here (forward to 1h17).


Anonymous said...

Well the kids are obviously smart enough despite the dumbing down!

Anonymous said...

I remember in the late 70s, shuddering when we were given 'O' Level maths papers from the early 60s. But then I have heard people say education was never as good as it was in the 1930s.

Either people used to be incredibly clever in the 'old days' or, more likely, it is a sign of your age.

I do object to exam grades not been given proportionally though; only the top 5% should get an 'A', regardless of score.

Anonymous said...

Druid, I know this is not in the correct place but confusion reigned at the Anglesey Planning Committee today when an application came up for Llanbedrgoch...the application was not 'represented' because there were no Aberigininees present.

Billy Elliot

Anonymous said...

We see the Born Trouble-maker from Benllech is at it again.

Its no little wonder that the Council's bad name escalated between 2004 and 2008.

Anonymous said...

Squadron leader, Billy Elliot

Anonymous said...

She is rather smug and pleased with herself - she knows she is throwing platitudes that would please the Daily Mail crowd.

Seriously. When I did A level physics in 1967 I had to replicate the experiments of Boyle, Joule and Ampere. If I gave my paper ot one of today's students they wouldn't stand a chance - thank heavens. We are constantly reviewing what is in the curriculum to make it BETTER not dumber. If students are doing better it is not that the exams are dumber - it is because what we are asking them to learn has been better thought out.... and teachers are much better trained.

We send 47% of or students to higher education. If you look at that 47th percentile student of today and compare them to the 47th percentile student of 1967 it is VERY clear who is better educated.... and that would be true from percentage point to percentage point.

Groundhog Day said...

Thank heavens my children had the chance to attend a grammar school in England. It is the comprehensive system that brought down the brighter kids to the level of the also rans, grammar schools, and there are still many of them across the border, seek out and promote excellence. How I wish we still had grammar schools in this area. My old school in Amlwch had two grammar 'streams' and required the passing of the 11+. In addition all the teachers at that time had degrees in their own speciality subjects rather than the BEd @teach-all' general degree teachers appear to hold these days. Furthermore the requirement for teachers in our local schools to be able to speak Welsh was, in my opinion, a further dumbing down of the education system in our area as this put a block on the
the more able English speaking teachers from our schools. I say this as a proud Welsh speaker but I think the insistence on Welsh at all costs did not do our kids any favours.

Anonymous said...

I say this as a proud Welsh speaker but I think the insistence on Welsh at all costs did not do our kids any favours.

It may have made a difference for the first couple of years. Not now.

Avatar said...

I am welsh, my language is welsh, and it defines who I am. I am proud that I can speak one of the oldest languages in Europe. I encourage all others to learn the language, for its poetry for it’s songs for its belief in the future. I may never have a true independent country, but they can never take away my soul - my language.

The majority of older passionate english speaking welsh people which I have met have told me they wished they could speak the language, and regret that they did not learn it when young.

Saying that the welsh language is not important, is a bit like saying red squirrels do not need protection.

I can speak two languages, I am bilingual, I am proud of that fact, ok my spelling and grammar is poor, but that reflects badly on me, rather than the nation as a whole.

After all when in Rome……

Anonymous said...

If the 23.34 and 23.36 councillor hiding behind anonimity would like to contact me, feel absolutely free.
I am certainly not the individual your twisyed mind thinks.

Anonymous said...

"Twisted mind thinks"
There's 40 of them. Which ONE are you referring to?
And learn to spell please.

Anonymous said...

11.13 Have you read through all of these blogs to see the many errors? Or is it just me you
are picking on? Another Bully Boy perhaps?