Sinn Féin MLA Chris Hazzard has welcomed the Catholic Principal Association’s call for Grammar schools to immediately cease the unjustifiable use of unregulated entrance exams and that the Catholic Bishops should now take robust action rather than merely reiterating their opposition to testing.
Mr Hazzard said,
“I think that the argument of testing children at ten and eleven has long been proven to be detrimental to the educational development of our young people and should cease immediately.
“Academic excellence will only be further enhanced by introducing equality into our schools; we only need to glance at the long list of high achieving systems worldwide to see the fruits of giving all our children fair opportunity.
“Currently the vast majority of grammar schools across the North operate on an all-ability level with grades from A to D being accepted so there really is no reason for such high-pressure entrance exams.
“I welcome the call today from the Catholic Principal Association for Grammar school to stop the unregulated tests and reiterate their call on Catholic Bishops to take more affirmative action in making this happen.
“The time is now right to remove these stressful tests from our education system and allow all of our children the opportunity to maximise their potential through equality in education.”