Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Mid-year Exams

Yay exams are over!! Well at least the mid-year ones are. I made the exams a little harder to try and compromise between what I think is reasonable and the Samoan norm. In Samoa exams are basically written to be failed. These exams are so far above the actual level of the children it is laughable. This is then compromised for by making anything over a 25% passing. My scores from my first exam that averaged around 60% were incredibly high by this standard. Even with the harder exam I was pretty happy with me scores, I had a similar average but I had way less 100% and 0%. In a system where levels are based solely on age not on ability, the disparity between students in the same class is the equivalent of a second grader and a fifth grader. My goal here has become no to get a certain number of kids in to the best college’s but just to try and pull the gap between the top of the class and the bottom just a little bit closer. I realize it’s going to be much harder and probably won’t get me as much recognition but I can make myself just forget the lower kids. A lot of them will be farmers and will never need what I am offering but I want at least some of what I teach to be accessible to them. Even if it’s just throwing in a couple four letter words on the spelling test so they have a chance of getting some right, education shouldn’t seem impossible for anyone.

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