November 2, 2020
‘Academic selection should be scrapped’ Mullan tells Assembly

Sinn Féin MLA Karen Mullan has called for academic selection to be scrapped during an Assembly debate today.

The Foyle MLA said:

“The Education committee conducted a wide-ranging survey into the issue of post primary transfer tests and its impacts.

”Today, on the back of that survey the Assembly debated a motion on transfer testing and the need for contingency arrangements in the context of the COVID-19 situation. 

”In a normal year it’s not acceptable to select and reject young children based on their performance in an unregulated test, but this year it is particularly cruel when young people have endured so much disruption and have made so many sacrifices. 

”Report after report cites not only the damage that these tests have on children’s mental health but the damage they cause to the education system as a whole. 

”These tests perpetuate inequality and exacerbate the long tail of educational underachievement here in the north.

“The continuation of transfer tests is in complete contradiction to the overwhelming majority of evidence into academic selection and they should be scrapped altogether.

“Sinn Féin will continue to work for a just education system which is underpinned by the right of all students to have equal opportunities.”

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