August 24, 2004

Spotted on someone else's blog

This is from NeoSoc's blog "My Plan to Get Rid of Tony Blair. It's a really cool blog and yesterday he posted something I completely agree with. I'm gonna quote his post in full but please do visit his blog:

Put up or Shut up

Well, its official, I have the intellect of Philip Hensher's pet rabbit. And to be honest, I'm pissed off, as are most of those who recieved their results last Thursday. Now, I'm not one of those who harp on about the 'good old days' but I can't help thinking it must have been nice to have finished your A-levels in the 60s and '70s. You know when A-Levels were worth something and GCSEs were O-levels. Just imagine you'd get your results, have done well, and the national press would write about how great it is that more young people are doing better at school.

Then again like all golden times that never really happened, I guess its something to do with August. I mean, "Students do well" wouldn't really cover enough sheets and you'd have to come up with even more filler than usual for your newspaper/morning breakfast show/24 hour news channel. Far better to have lengthly columns about how standards are slipping, using every "self appointed expert"* on the subject to tell us no matter how well we did that our results are worthless.

And just in case there's someone out there who's still proud of their result, we also have all the stories of four year olds getting an A in Maths, or the triplets who all get four As and go to Cambridge (which seems to appear every year) and my personal favourite the boy who gets 5As and calls the exams easy.

I'd understand it, if it happened now and again but instead its every year and it doesn't just end when you go to uni. Then it gets even better because in the run up to exam results your teachers start telling everyone you're among the least intelligent students they've ever taught.

Well, I'm not going to take this BS anymore, why should 3As be merely adequate whilst anything less means you have the IQ of a rabbit? Why should pupils/students have to go through the most stressful three years of their academic life being told that no matter how well they do their results will be worthless?

That's why I'm taking a stand, I'm calling on the UK Press to put up or shut up. Here's the deal: all these 'experts' choose three subjects of their choice (although taking 'soft' subjects like Psychology would be frowned upon) and they then take the A-level exam in these subjects (all in one go because modular exams are so easy). If they all get 3As, then they can write about declining standards to their hearts' content and I'll never complain again. But if they don't achieve this task, which according to them is now laughably easy, they have to shut up, and write about something that's actually newsworthy.

I get the feeling there's not going to be many takers.

*I apologise for quoting David Miliband, but for the first time ever I agree with him.

I completely agree with this idea - it would be SUPERB if politicians and 'experts' could actually sit the A-level exams. I do believe that many would fail. Anyway, top marks to NeoSoc.