25 October 2001 Edition

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11+ Report can transform the educational landscape

Sinn Féin Assembly education spokesperson Barry McElduff has welcomed the Burns report which recommends the abolition of the 11+ transfer test. It had the potential to transform the educational landscape, said McElduff.

"Sinn Féin notes with great satisfaction the report's recommendations that the flawed and counter-productive 11+ transfer test be done away with," said McElduff. "This single move can do more to transform the educational landscape in the Six Counties than many previous initiatives.

"It is testimony to the approach of Martin McGuinness that he tackled this issue head on. The report is also a result of good work by the Review Body. The whole consultation process was a shinning example of participatory democracy in action, and the report reflects the views and concerns of a wide range of people and organisations.

"We will study the report with great interest, particularly the interesting proposals for school collegiates. Without pre-empting our deliberations, the core principle implied by the concept of school collegiates of a culture of cooperation and teamwork within the education system appears to be an important advance.

"Sinn Féin will also examine proposals that feeder primary schools should be included in these collegiates as a mechanism for enhancing a seamless high quality education environment for children and their communities."

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