Principal: 11-Plus not a measure of success

Barbados’ education system has become too examination centred, said principal of Milton Lynch Primary School, Tyrone Marshall.

Yesterday, during the school’s graduation ceremony at Christ Church Foundation School, Church Hill, Christ Church, Marshall said too much emphasis was being placed on the Barbados Secondary Schools’ Entrance Examination (BSSEE) – known as the Common Entrance or 11-Plus – but his school was not so focused.

“Everything is tests, tests, tests, and more tests and then our children face the ultimate test of them all, the Common Entrance Exam. When will the bell ring and end this? When will it stop? We here at Milton Lynch are a child-centred school . . . we shall not teach syllabus, we shall teach children.

The 2022 graduating class of the Milton Lynch Primary School. (Picture by Reco Moore.)

“The Common Entrance can never tell the tale of a child who has moved from the 20 per cent range to 40 per cent. It cannot herald the achievement of a child who could barely write three sentences now writing two decent paragraphs. We shall not only teach our boys for syllabus, this is a long term investment. We shall teach our boys for life,” he said.

Marshall said their goal was to allow their students to learn and assimilate information at their own pace using various methods, despite whatever results came about at the BSSEE, something he said he had long made peace with. (CA)

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