Education Reform: Jettisoning 11+

Submitted by William Skinner

Those who support the abolition of the Common Entrance Examination (CEE), will certainly welcome the current administration’s intention to move our children, out of what is really a socioeconomic and educational gas chamber. We have not seen a determined, enlightening, or progressive effort to reform the education system, from any administration, since 1962, when free education was introduced.

Those who believe that education reform is like purchasing garbage trucks or buses are deluding themselves. It should not be the plaything of political grandstanding and excessive nonproductive press conferences. Our last Minister of Education has bequeathed nothing but presentation without content.

While this writer wholeheartedly supports progressive continuous assessment as the best method, for our children to make the transition from primary to secondary school, the awareness, that it is not the only one is constant. Any reform of the system that does not include how we are going to harness our human resources, for the next half century, will be a complete waste of time.

The current administration is failing quite miserably, in its bungling efforts, to get our children back in the classroom, after their long absence caused by the pandemic. It is difficult to have confidence in its ability to radically reform the education system, if it cannot even get this existing problem solved or at least reduced.

The frustration has now reached our incredibly young children, some under the age of five, who joined their parents in a march of disgust against being imprisoned in their homes. Amazingly, we can find ways to expose the country to COVID, via a general election, to solve a bogus division. We can create senseless super spreaders, but we cannot develop a system to rescue our children from psychological trauma because of boredom and stress due to extremely limited or no social interaction.

Our children: barely out of pampers; whose pee has not yet begun to foam; and who are still to encounter a training bra, took to the streets to remind those who have undertaken the appearance of adults, that the nonsense must cease.

As we embark, on the quest to abolish the dreaded CEE, and reform our education system, we must collectively do better because our young people, who have just abandoned their cribs are not going to stand for “any foolishness.” The message is more than clear.

239 comments

  • Went to work.

    Wukking steady.

    Have to say no, no, no, to some potential employers too.

    Lots of nieces and nephews the same.

    And we ain’t too bright.

    Simple like me.

    Just an average rural working class Bajan family.

    Parents worry themselves too much.

    Like

  • African Online Publishing Copyright ⓒ 2022. All Rights Reserved

    oh…and that same tutor, no 11 plus, no CXCs and no college degree can translate Bob’s songs..

    Like

  • African Online Publishing Copyright ⓒ 2022. All Rights Reserved

    I have relatives who never took the 11 plus and are SCHOLARS, they were not in jurisdictions that offered the test, thankfully……it’s an unnecessary test…

    Like

  • @African Online Publishing Copyright ⓒ 2022. All Rights Reserved February 9, 2022 6:20 PM

    “Harrison College, when that’s the HIGH SCHOOL SECTION, not a college at all but a HIGH SCHOOL.”

    I think that ALL Bajans know that Harrison College is a secondary school. However Americans do get confused. Harrison College school is a secondary school for COLLEGE-bound students.

    In Canada for example such schools are sometimes called collegiate institutes and every Canadian knows that they are secondary schools for college-bound students. Some are also even called colleges, such as Havergal College which is a private secondary school.

    Like

  • @African Online Publishing Copyright ⓒ 2022. All Rights Reserved February 9, 2022 6:52 PM
    “have you figured out how to translate one of Bob’s song yet”

    Yup I figured that out when you were still a child.

    Had a huge collection of Bob’s and Ziggy’s works, but passed them on to the youth decades ago shortly after I had taken them on a trip to Jamaica where we spent some time learning at the Bob Marley museum inna Kingston.

    Like

  • HC AND ALL THE SCHOOLS BY SIMILAR NOMENCLATURE THROUGHOUT THE ISLANDS ARE PROPERLY CALLED GRAMMAR SCHOOLS.
    i DID THE FIRST CCE IN 62. wE SAT IN OUR CLASS ROOM AT BFS AND THE EXAM WAS BROUGHT TO US AS AT ANY SCHOOL DAY. IT WAS THEN HELD IN TWO SECTIONS . WE HAD NO WARNING OR PREPARATION.

    THE TEST HAS EVOLVED OVER THE YEARS AND WHEN MY FIRST BOY TOOK IT IN 88 THERE WERE TEXT BOOKS AND THERE DID NOT SEEM TO BE MUCH MORE GRAMMAR OR ENGLISH TO LEARN.

    I GUESS SOME OF THOSE BOOKS SHOULD BE USED THROUGHOUT THE FIRST TO FIFTH FORM. THE BEST STUDENTS WILL GET IT AT II, AND DO, THE OTHERS CAN GET IT BY 16 WITH PERSEVERANCE BY STUDENT TEACHER AND PARENT

    WITH THIS EXPOSURE, EVEN THE POOREST OF OUR CHILDREN ARE PERDORMING MUCH BETTER THAN THOSE IN ANY US SCHOOL. OUR STUDENTS THEREFORE ARE ABLE TO DISMISS THE SAT OR GRD ETC WITH EASE.

    I AM APPALED AT THE THE SO CALLED COLLEGE LEVEL STUDENTS WITH WHOM I HAVE TO DEAL

    OUR SYSTEM HAS WORKED WELL FOR US IN LARGE MEASURE. WE NEED TO FIX THE DEFICIENCIES GOING FOWARD
    RATHER THAN SEEK TO BE LIKE OTHERS WHOSE SYSTEMS ARE INFERIOR AND IN WHICH EVEN THE VERY POOREST OF OUR STUDENTS EXCEL

    Like

  • African Online Publishing Copyright ⓒ 2022. All Rights Reserved

    Kiki…check out the new release.

    Like

  • @African Online Publishing Copyright ⓒ 2022. All Rights Reserved February 9, 2022 11:42 AM

    I still want to know what Argentina is doing in Black majority Barbados but WHAT DO THEY WANT”

    T-R-A-D-E.

    Like

  • @WURU

    Pacha is dead, don’t you know that?

    Like

  • @William Skinner February 9, 2022 11:55 AM “after cussing and calling Grantley Adams an Uncle Tom”

    My mother’s cousin who was born in 1910 and who was raised by my grandmother told me herself that they called Grantley Adams “Moses”

    Like

  • @ GP
    . I am quite confident that you will get your wish in great measure. Having followed the pronouncements so far, it is a safe bet , that the current administration, even if it closes the gas chamber, will not bring any significant changes.
    You are not suggesting any real or radical changes, you are simply saying to improve a system which is incapable of producing the progressive changes needed.
    Abolishing the CEE is only the first step. While I am enjoying your posts ; we are really miles apart , but I am realistic enough to admit that your approach will be more acceptable. It’s in keeping with how the majority thinks.
    But you must keep fighting because, you go in the ring by yourself and never depend on a tag team . I find that very commendable and intellectually honest. You have the strength of your convictions.
    Question: How can you so steadfastly support an educational system that bluntly refuses to instill in our children a sense of the true history of their heritage.?

    Like

  • @ CudearBajan
    “ My mother’s cousin who was born in 1910 and who was raised by my grandmother told me herself that they called Grantley Adams “Moses”

    That is correct. That generation, did and they had all right to do so because he led them from the fields.
    However, as the society progressed and Errol Barrow emerged, the radicals myself included , started to critically analyze Sir Grantley’s contribution.
    While he made a great contribution to the trade Union movement and so on, his politics tended to support the plantocracy .and merchant class.
    The BLP made a giant shift away from the trade Union movement and that’s why Barrow was successful in bringing the unions’ leaders into the BLP camp.
    Mottley has with great brilliance succeeded in deconstructing the DLP’s hold on the unions except Unity Workers ( Franklyn) .
    What I am saying is that there is now a movement to reconstruct both Adams and the BLP. It is based on raw political opportunism.

    Like

  • Cuhdear Bajan,

    The CCE was easy for you. The CCE was easy for me.

    The CCE is not easy for a whole lotta others.

    People are different.

    Like

  • WILLIAM
    THANKS FOR YOUR KIND WORDS
    BUT I HAVE JUST BEGAN TO THINK ABOUT THIS MAN
    COME ON MAN
    DID YOU NOT LIKE ME, GROW UP AT A TIME WHEN YOUR FOLK CONVERTED A WOOD HOUSE TO WALL GRADUALLY WITHOUT BORROWING FROM THE BANK, AND AT NO TIME DESTROYING TOTALLY THE ENTIRE ORIGINAL BUILDING?
    ALSO LET ME SHARE WITH YOU A PHARMACOLOGY PRINCIPLE THAT MAY JUDICIOUSLY BE APPPLIED HERE SIR

    NEVER BE THE FIRST TO ABANDON THE OLD OR THE LAST TO EMBRACE THE NEW
    AND FROM YOUR SCHOOL DAYS IN LATIN CLASS=> FESTINA LENTE OR HASTEN SLOWLY OR FROM HEBREWS 12 => RUN WITH PATIENCE THE RACE THAT IS SET BEFORE YOU
    OR FROM DE VILLAGE YUH CAHN SCHAKLE OUT EVATING ONE TIME WILLIAM
    BEHAVE YUH SELF YOU ARE A WISER MAN THAN DAT. LOL

    Like

  • CEE or BSSEE

    Like

  • @William “there is now a movement to reconstruct both Adams and the BLP. It is based on raw political opportunism.”

    Understood. And it is not so much that Adams had led that generation from the fields, because many, many literally continued to work in the fields both on the plantations and on their own behalf. But as she said he led them out of bondage as he got them considerably increased wages. People like nice wages. I’ve forgotten now but my second cousin told me of the difference in wages for various sugar industry tasks, cutting sour grass, tying canes, weeding, dropping manure, dropping cane plants etc., lining the ground before digging the cane holes, digging cane holes, cutting cane, and the raises gained for the workers by Adams and other trade unionists were significant for that time.

    @Donna
    True. I have a good friend passionate about teaching, who for years taught special needs children, mainly boys, and wanted to ensure that every student learnt what he could and acquired some preparation for work, because in truth once we are adults we have to find a way to make our way in this harsh world.

    We do not spend enough enough effort, time and money on those children who learn differently or more slowly. I’d never write off a child. I can’t say the same for adults.

    Like

  • So if the fellas trying to rewrite history or are trying to write Grantley Adams out of history, there are still some of us left who had plenty of time to talk to the eye witnesses of the events in Barbados in the pre and post 1937 period

    Like

  • WILLIAM
    RE Question: How can you so steadfastly support an educational system that bluntly refuses to instill in our children a sense of the true history of their heritage.?
    IF YOU TALKING BOUT THE HISTORY OF BARBADOS I WID YOU
    IF YOU TALKING ABOUT OUR CULTURRE CUSTOMS CUISINE I WID YOU

    RE The CCE was easy for you. The CCE was easy for me.
    BUT YET YOU FOCUSSED ON TEACHING THE YOUNG, AND YOUR RELATIVE THE SAME
    YOU TEACH OR TAUGHT SUNDAY SCHOOL
    I PREFER TEACHING AT BCC OR UWI OR MED SCHOOL AND I DONT LIKE TEACHING SUNDAY SCHOOL
    WE MASTERED THE SAME SYSTEM BUT CAN FIND DIFFERENT NICHES IN THE SSTEM TO ENHANCE AND IMPROVE THE SYSTEM
    YOUR RELATIVE WENT TO HC BUT ONLY WANTS TO STRENGTHEN THE FOUNDATION OF THE SYSTEM
    IS ANYONE LISTENING TO EITHER OF YOU AMD THOSE LIKE YOU?
    DOES ANYONE WANT TO HEAR WHAT YOU ARE SAYING ABOUT THE PSYCHOLOGICAL ISSUES THAT ARE DESTROYING THE SYSTEM

    IT DOES NOT MATTER WHAT MATERIAL IS TAUGHT IN THE SYSTEM IF THE FOUNDATION IS NOT SOLID AND DIVERSE TO ACCOMODATE THOSE WHO CAN AND THOSE WHO CANT…OR WONT IF THE RIGHT PERSONEL ARE NOT FOUND
    TRAINED FURTHER SO THEY CAN TRAIN OTHERS ACCORDING TO THE BIBLICAL PHIOLOSOPHY IN 2 TIMOTHY 2:2 AND UNTIL THE PSYCHOLOGICL ISSUES IN THE FAILING STUDENTS ARE IRONED OUT.

    IT DOES NOT HAVE TO TAKE LONG WILLIAM IF THE WILL IS THERE

    Like

  • @ Cuhdear
    The guys are actually trying to write Sir Grantley “back “. into history.
    Those who called him an Uncle Tom are now singing a different tune all together.
    I suggest you read recent articles by Liz Thompson and David Comissiong.
    They are intellectually trying to bury
    Barrow and the DLP and are now .elevating Sir Grantley and the BLP , it is fascinating stuff.
    This all ties into Mottley’s agenda. I am actually admiring Mottley . She is by far the most astute politician since the eras of both Sir Grantley and Barrow.
    Now get me straight ; I am no fan but I have never allowed my personal views to cloud reality. Mottley is changing the political landscape of the country. And so far it’s 10 out of 10.

    Liked by 1 person

  • Finally for those who pontificate about getting rid of the CEE, did you ever wonder why it was implemented in the first place? And please, no bullshit about the white man nonsense! Prior to 1962 the only students who could “get in” the posh schools were white, “high brown” and a trickling of black students whose fathers were doctors or lawyers and who could afford to pay the exorbitant school fees. This meant that the majority of black students who had the mental acumen to attend these schools were barred because their parents were domestic servants ( I wonder how many of you know what a domestic servant is) carpenters or cane cutters, and the only way they could enter these hallowed walls was by way of helping their parents to clean these schools. The Right Honorable Errol W Barrow put a stop to that and said that all Bajan children should have an equal chance of gaining access to these schools, hence the genesis of the CEE. He mussee rolling in he grave to see what a bunch of second generation illiterate idiots have been produced from his efforts to increase access to these schools. We now have hardheads and whiners who know nothing about critical thinking and take no pride in the great strides this little rock has made over the years, just shite talk about stupid Africa and what the white man did four hundred years ago…… My advice to you who take education for granted is to learn about Barbados not Africa, and stop attempting to pull down the solid foundation laid on the blood, sweat and tears of your parents and grandparents.

    Like

  • @ GP
    Understood. However, ideologically I have not seen the needle move as much as we would have expected 50 years ago.
    The gradualism approach has been upended by the Information Highway , and we failed to get on that quickly enough; we now have COVID , that has set us back a quarter century and before those the oil crisis and the recessionary cycles. And to top it all: a complete failure to manage agriculture, fishing and other sectors properly.
    You would perhaps agree that any reform of our education system will have to at least impact very positively on our socio economic future.
    It will have to focus on the productive use of our human capital. We now have to do what Japan started to do almost immediately after World War Two: develop an education system that will make us competitive.
    I don’t think these jokers have that ability and capacity.
    To put it bluntly , to your analogy regarding how we used to convert board houses to wall; there are many board houses that have been converting to wall for thirty years. The blocks are blackened and the owners have joined the Ancestors.
    That’s why I prefer to wait and discover what the administration intentions . As I have said : this is not about buying garbage trucks and buses. This is about what type of citizen we will produce to be the guardians of their fate for the next fifty years.

    Like

  • VERONA
    ONCE MORE WHAT YOU HAVE SAID IS SOUND DOCTRINE THAT CAN NOT BE REFUTED
    I TOO BELIEVE THAT THAT IS ONE OF THE SUBTLE REASONS BEHIND ABOLISHING THE CEE
    I HAVE TO CONCUR WITH YOU RE My advice to you who take education for granted is to learn about Barbados not Africa, and stop attempting to pull down the solid foundation laid on the blood, sweat and tears of your parents and grandparents.

    JUST READ BARBADOS OBITS ON A DAILY BASIS
    THERE HAS BEEN A SERIOUS TRANSITION
    I AM PROUD TO READ OF ALL THOSE ELDERLY FOLK WHO TOILED IN THE FIELDS TO SACRIFICE SO THAT THEIR CHILDREN AND GRANDCHILDREN COULD ADVANCE AS MANU JAVE DONE
    WE SHOULD FIND MEANINGFUL WAYS TO BUILD ON THE FOUNDATION THAT HAS BEEN LAID

    Like

  • One must surmise that William is so naïve not to appreciate the give and take that would have been required in an environment where a few controlled the economic power. Therefore fighting for the rights of the so-called field class and lower class then and even now must be done carefully.

    Like

  • @ David
    Why don’t you take the time and read what I write. It is called reading critically or with an open mind.
    You need to read what Liz Thompson wrote the article was titled;Living in Barrow’s house or something like dat. Then read Comissiong’s piece about how the BLP and Sir Grantley’s legacy has been restored.
    Then you may get the gravity of what I am humbly attempting to critique,
    However, before you read anything again try to read : How To Read And Why by
    Harold Bloom
    Perhaps you would then appreciate how to honestly critique what others write.
    Your current style is that of pure condescension.which means that you are reading what is being written and then providing the puerile consensus that there are always two sides to a story..
    You then end up being weakly prosecutorial .
    Like I said recently : I was about to say , you are something else but you really ain’t.
    Now put a smile on your face and fool yourself that you have me turning red. You can’t do that because I was born red!!
    BTW greetings from my friend in London.

    Like

  • @William

    The blogmaster can read you like a book. The chip is still lodged firmly.

    Like

  • @David
    Nice to know you’re a big fan 😂. And I you. One love Bro’✌🏿
    Enjoy our day,

    Liked by 1 person

  • African Online Publishing Copyright ⓒ 2022. All Rights Reserved

    These acting like someone need advice from those WHO DON’T EVEN KNOW WHO THEY ARE…steupppps….and too brainwashed and INDOCTRINATED to figure it or anything else out….so what are you going to advice those who know their ancestry, culture, traditions, heritage and LANGUAGES on….

    William…the big turnoff…..glad my plate is full and i can focus on what am doing..

    has anyone thought of a NAME for the 6th form COLLEGE when all those 6th form schools/students are COMBINED into ONE institution..cheaper to have one college instead of 13….or more.

    will read comments later, too busy at this time.

    Like

  • African Online Publishing Copyright ⓒ 2022. All Rights Reserved

    oh and by the way:

    Harrison College….slave master school,complete with name still intact..hence they did not want what they considered the poor black riffraff in them…

    Lodge School…..slave master school

    Combermere….slave master school….

    can’t remember the hisotry of the one or 2 others right now….but everywhere countries are working hard to get rid of the symbols and statues of slave master presence and consign them to museums….including names.

    but slavery descendants are hellbent on keeping them for prestige and bragging and boasting…steuppppsss…along with the dangerous system itself…no shame, dignity or self-respect at all, is that what ya passing on to ya future generations…

    Like

  • @ WURA
    I really think we have to wait and see exactly what direction the education reform will take.
    BTW , you see how the ones “ who pass part 2”’eating themselves in the courts.
    If you want an example of what the gas chamber produced- there you have it!
    Let them eat one another ,while the nurses they care for so much get their cars repossess and fall behind on their mortgages.
    The “ bright ones “ on stage.
    Garbage in garbage out.
    A corrupt law class , schooled in the culture of the Massa’s educational system to eat one another .

    Like

  • Bob, Peter and Bunny aka The Wailers was Lee Scratch Perry’s gift to the world.
    As far as global icons go there are few bigger than Robert Nesta aka Bob Marley.
    He was 36 when he died in 1981 but his music has lived on and is growing strong.
    Cornerstone Vs Cornerstone Dub

    Like

  • The CCE served its purpose of opening the door to poor and black people. The door has long been open. Time to move with these new times.

    Circumstances have changed. The people have changed. The system must change with it.

    Too many are being left behind.

    At the same time we must be aware of what could happen when the CCE is abolished and make damn sure that those who used to be shut out are not shut out again.

    The point made by Verona M is valid.

    Like

  • @ Donna
    “At the same time we must be aware of what could happen when the CCE is abolished and make damn sure that those who used to be shut out are not shut out again.

    The point made by Verona M is valid.”

    However, the more I read and hear about this reform, the more I am convinced that the current administration, like the one before it, will not be up to the task. I believe that we need to involve citizens in this. This cannot be a high handed edict form above.
    We need to wait and see exactly what they are going to replace the gas chamber with.
    Quite frankly , I am waiting to learn who are the members or major players, on any committee or committees that will be set up. This is not about politics ; this is about the future of our most precious resource; our children

    Like

  • William,

    They need also to listen to teachers.

    Like

  • African Online Publishing Copyright ⓒ 2022. All Rights Reserved

    /;Pacha is dead, don’t you know that?/;

    i know no such thing, Blogmaster never said anything on this platform, so i will take that with a bag of salt if you don’t mind, until i hear it elsewhere..

    “A corrupt law class , schooled in the culture of the Massa’s educational system to eat one another .”
    as well designed and written about now being read everywhere….let them eat each other, they will eventually TURN on those who follow them and hang on to their every LYING word…

    William….the AU launching an official global language for Afriikan MINDED people is MY CUE…am sure you and a few others can figure that out…if Pacha was around he would explain to the others.

    i know mostly everyone missed the recent play, to their own detriment, but it is now an editorial for the next issue for Kush Quarterly April-June issue and will be a dedicated chapter in my next book..

    It has started..who is awake will see, who aren’t OH WELL…..i have NO MORE TIME to waste.

    Like

  • African Online Publishing Copyright ⓒ 2022. All Rights Reserved

    “The news former Attorney General Adriel Brathwaite filed a motion with the Court to rule on the legitimacy of the Senate”

    this is a ha, ha, ha moment…we KNEW this is what it would reach to, as long as REAL LAWYERS who knew what they were reading (Jamaican lawyers) and expertly capable of understanding it would act, since we know they are not easily INTIMIDATED.

    if they were depending on locally bred lawyers to even accurately translate the consititution let alone resist the plot ….all would indeed be lost…

    …i also noted that over 800 comments later on the other thread…most people were WRONG but playing strong….a lot of wasted time, but it was theirs to waste, not mine…

    i have added a cap to how much time i use and doing so conservatively….plate is full..

    Like

  • African Online Publishing Copyright ⓒ 2022. All Rights Reserved

    Now i remember one or two of them, the notorious Codrington..(CoE) who brutally branded slaves as property…with the churches in the role as TORTURERS..

    whatever they are calling themselves these days, Codrington school, college or seminary for the indoctrination of dress wearing priests to LIE TO and MISLEAD the population….there may be one or two others, but this one and the above are the most DANGEROUS ones to still have around….

    Like

  • African Online Publishing Copyright ⓒ 2022. All Rights Reserved

    This is not a one off…i have seen how students treat each other…just as the adults do….learned behavior..

    “The three former Princess Margaret Secondary School students convicted of manslaughter were back in the No. 2 Supreme Court on Tuesday.

    They have been given three more weeks to finalise their payments to the parents of the fellow student they unlawfully killed more than 12 years ago.

    It was back in 2019 that Maria Antoinette Goddard, 12 at the time, of Parish Land; Doniko Javier Alleyne, also then 12, of Balls Land, and Shaquille Shamar Khallel Bradshaw, then 14, also of Balls Land, all in Christ Church, were found guilty of unlawfully killing 11-year-old Ian Gibson on September 20, 2009. Gibson was fresh out of primary school when the incident occurred.”

    Like

  • I remember a conversation with John Cumberbatch when he was in Toronto in the early 70’s. He asked me about the transition from primary to secondary school in Ontario where there is no centrally administered test. I knew research had found that the most reliable assessment of a child’s ability came from a competent teacher. Yes, not all teachers are equally competent, but a child will be evaluated by several during primary school. The CEE is a one off and some capable children will not do well under the stress and some are just not developmentally ready or struggle with difficult circumstances.
    I stumbled on last year’s 25th memorial lecture by Ronnie Yearwood and learned that 50 years later nothing much had changed. 50 years of allowing the most vulnerable children to tough it out at the bottom in schools where I suspect many teachers are reluctant to teach. Largely because teachers’ evaluations are not trusted. Mixed ability schools can and do educate clever students well.
    Canadian society is also struggling with our lack of trust in our fellow citizens but continuous assessment by teachers is still the practice even if right wing governments have removed the additional funding that used to provide extra resources to schools in low income neighbourhoods.

    Like

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