Breathe! The pressure done
WHA’ LOSS! Lemmuh tell ya: all the pressure leading up tuh the exams, especially the 11-Plus exams, ovah, and ya could now breathe a li’l bit.
The whole atmosphere feel more relaxed; the place feels like it has a freshness ’bout it, an ease; the traffic pon the roads ain’t chock-o-block wid evahbody rushing.
I ain’t even know if it is the very children who were preparing fuh the exams who now feeling a sense o’ relief dat it is now behind dem. I ain’t know if it is the older children who were doing duh CXC exams and who now barely eating and sleeping like it gine outta style. Neither do I know if is dat all schools gine be out by the end o’ this month and evahbody is looking forward tuh the long summer vacation. I just ain’t know!
But the one thing I know is dat I glad enough the 11-Plus, or what we used tuh call the “Screening Test”, done. The results out, evahbody know where duh going or not going, the tears of both happiness and disappointment done shed and sensible parents hugged, kissed and blessed duh children fuh coming through, fuh reaching another milestone in duh lives and are now waiting tuh hear from the various schools about the uniforms, books and such like.
Look, I never thought I would feel this way again as my children are all grown up and have passed the 11-Plus and CXC stage, but leh me tell ya: once ya close tuh the li’l people, ya does feel it, hear?
So when ya hear the results come back, while ya does be excited tuh hear how you li’l people do, ya does be just as eager tuh hear how their li’l friends did. Doan fear, dem does be all round you, just as eager tuh tell you.
I felt a little disappointed wid my nephew’s results though, and the school he was going tuh, but I hugged him and kissed him and let him know dat I was still very proud of him.
The truth is, though, I really felt for him because I know dat he was more disappointed in himself than I was after months and months of going tuh lessons and talking non-stop ’bout the particular school he wanted tuh go tuh.
Shedding some tears
He even went suh far as tuh make the mother drive him up tuh the school and walk him all ’round the schoolyard tuh get the feel of it, only tuh fall way below the marks dat would get him there.
The thing is, the school he ended up now going tuh, he didn’t even had in thoughts, it was only put down because of the zone and because of the order o’ the marks.
Well now after shedding some tears because he felt he let us down and more so himself, he is now in a more relaxed mood and looking forward tuh the vacation where he could go tuh camp or play nuff football in the sun.
But he is a very intelligent child who was doing really good at lessons, but like a lot o’ other boys does waste bare time, become easily distracted and more than anything else make a lot o’ foolish mistakes.
This brings me tuh some parents who still ending up at the ministry and making duhselves miserable ’bout the schools duh children going tuh.
I cahn understand the confusion, though. If you select the schools in your particular zone way before the exam time, why after the results come back it is still a big lot o’ confusion ’bout children going tuh school too far away from home, requesting transfers and a whole lot o’ other complaints dat dem could have dealt wid way before the exam? Wha’ dem ain’t put down these schools?
Look, I ain’t know if this sort o’ thing will evah end as nuh matter what the ministry do, some people gine still not be satisfied. I wonder if dem people in the ministry yard complaining the other day had children who did pass fuh Harrison College or Queen’s College if they would be complaining ’bout the distance and the lot o’ foolishness.
Dem sit down and put down the schools in their zone in the order of marks. Some o’ dem even had teachers advising dem ’bout the children’s performances during the school year.
Lemme tell you now: it ain’t the school duh going tuh; it is you the parents first tuh make wunna children read, instil in dem a desire tuh learn.
Teach dem principles and values and keep dem grounded. Then the teachers will have less work as your children will do exceptionally well throughout primary school and when they come tuh do the transition exam, the 11-Plus, wunna won’t have tuh seek transfers. Your children will all be going tuh Harrison and Queen’s College, no matter how far away duh live from dem schools.
• Mavis Beckles was born and raised in The Orleans. She has an opinion on everything.