Tiny trade union rep suggests not having to do stressful formal exams is stressful

Some pupils are said to be ‘stressed to the point of being ill’ and teachers at their ‘wits’ end’ as senior students undergo assessment which will help decide their grades for national qualifications.

We hear that teachers will make the judgements this time just as everyone seemed to desire last year and the SQA algorithm which made pupils ill last year, is gone but the Scottish Government remains in the wrong according to the Scottish Secondary Teachers Association.

Their rep predicts mass complaints from pupils and parents and says they’ll be correct to do so.

Look, I remember the stress of my own formal exams. I remember witnessing the stress of students I taught in Higher Education and campaigning for forms of assessment that did less harm and at the same time more accurately measured learning outcomes. What is happening in our schools today cannot be as stressful though it will be adding to workload. Colleagues in Higher Education often fought to retain formal exams because they were easier to mark, requiring less detailed feedback on scripts.

The SSTA is a trade union, not an independent research body. Their opinions are unreliable.

I see the National, in April, also had a piece titled Expert raises fairness concerns over ‘pseudo exams’ in Scottish schools making similar arguments based on the opinions of serial SNP accuser and mere bean counter with no real background in education, Lindsay Paterson.

https://www.thenational.scot/news/19240867.pseudo-exams-brought-covid-sparks-fears-fairness/

Expert, my ass. Pro-independence newspaper, hmmm.

8 thoughts on “Tiny trade union rep suggests not having to do stressful formal exams is stressful

  1. Some academics are part of the problem. They complain about matters they are paid to sort out. ie if they were doing their jobs properly the ‘problems’ would not exist.

    They have the power to put in modules into educational training. Proper modules should be put in on additional needs training. Not half a day. The teachers have to try and get specialised training themselves. It would help all teachers and pupils. Scottish teachers are more qualified and better paid. There is too much paperwork. Blair introduced a lot of it. Educational tables etc.

    Class sizes should be kept down by the councils. They use the statutory limit of 30 to keep class sizes too high. They build houses but do not build schools until there are pupils to fill them. Bad planning. The corresponding schools get overcrowded. A bit more organisation would help. Unionist councils build empty shops and offices. Instead of schools and houses. Then cut essential services.

    More evaluation is done by assessment than ever before. Once it was all exams. Exams now make up less of assessment. It is easier than before. There is still a substantial work load. Computers help. Students have been working from home but still getting through the work. Scotland supports students with grants and loans. On of the best education systems in the world. It would be even better. With Independence there would be more resources.

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  2. Being cynical, isn’t exam marking also an fairly easy way to supplement income? I think it used to be in England at least, but I’m not so sure how it works/worked in Scotland.

    OTOH, it’s probably true that some students will be stressed. I can recognise 3 types myself:
    1) Those who genuine lack confidence and/or need specific grades to gain a place to study their chosen profession. But they’d stress anyway, I’d think.

    2) Those who are really good at retaining information short-term, but find it harder to perform consistently. Exams favour this type.

    3) Those who KNOW FOR A FACT that their teacher doesn’t like them (and so does the whole class because they watch the teacher bully the poor unfortunate). They fear they’ll be marked down whatever they do. There are some of those, but it’s the individual teacher who needs to be dealt with, not the assessment system.

    Could this attack on education have anything to do with WM plans for the Queen’s Speech?

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    1. “Could this attack on education have anything to do with WM plans for the Queen’s Speech?” –
      Undoubtedly, but also meshes with the string of “SG Education System failing” bunkum spouted by DRoss et al…

      OT- The headline “Tiny trade union rep..” instantly reminded me of the Fekawe tribe joke… 🤣

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    2. Exam marking is a well known way to supplement income, but the ease of this very much depends on what you are marking. Personally I hate marking.

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  3. As we have seen in the recent election there are a lot of unionists and yes they do use their position in their jobs to campaign for their personal politics we see it time and time again, Scotland has a bigger neighbour , one who controls all our money and gives us pocket money then tells us what we can and cannot spend it on , its obvious they also appoint their own people in high positions within Scotland across many fields of expertise who then go on to appoint likeminded people around them.
    Thats why there is never a shortage of people like this in every corner of Scottish life.

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  4. Scotland doesn’t have ‘secondary’ schools, we have high schools. The name of the organisation is very telling.
    The National is clever, they sham minimal independence support, enough to keep people paying up, but they are no friend of the SNP, the party that does work in the interests of the people of Scotland, and independence.

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