Using the matriculations for entry in high school is a vicous idea
Adelina Marini, 9 February 2009
As expected the idea the results from the matriculations after primary school grade to be used instead of an application test for high school (the newest idea, in fact), appeared after the big protests of pupils and parents because the children would be very overloaded. I do not intend to discuss here the basic issue that the preparation for the real life should be a set of hard work, a lot of efforts and the scrapping them would mean bad favour not only for the children themselves but for the society as a whole which would expect from these children higher and secure pensions. But my thought here is that this idea would practically substitute the core idea of the matriculations, which were recently introduced for 4th and 7th grade - and that is outside and independent estimation of the education level.
But since it gives the children the opportunity to enter whatever high school they want with the results of the matriculations, this would force parents to put much more efforts - either alone at home in their spare time or by hiring teachers, or additional private classes etc. - this would distort the result. It will not be possible to find whether there are some serious problems ate certain level of education, since so many participants in the system put efforts to hide it consciously or unconsciously. That is why, I as a mother of 2 that spends enormous time after work for their reasonable preparation, am absolutely against this idea and my basic arguments are as follows:
1. I want the education system to raise its quality because at the moment, the level of teaching and the quality of the books is, to put it simply, disastrous;
2. I want more children to be better prepared for the high requirements of today's globalised life so that they can create more added value and thus raise our wealth;
3. I want to have more spare time for my own personal professional growth, because right now almost all of my spare time is occupied with filling the gaps of the education of my children - either because of bad or, sometimes, wrong written books, or because of bad taught lessons, or because of the bad discipline in class (which is another very important issue);
4. At the end of the day the education system gets enough money, although according to its own estimations, it's not enough, so it is desirable that we should know what this money is spend for so that we could think for its more effective spending in the future;
5. Beside all this, Bulgaria continues to lag behind in the thinking that education is part of the economic future of the country. That's why the merging of tests could only harm the system on a moment when in the UK, for example, a debate is going on for a total change of the system because of the new realities. Furthermore, the financial and economic crisis showed unequivocally that studying historical precedents does not always give solutions to current problems and it would be better if different solutions are sought. From this point of view Bulgaria is decades lagging behind and, if not for other reasons, it is exactly because the education system is old and sluggish and that is why it would be embraced by a crisis the end of which could hardly be predicted.