JoAnn Harvey 0

Fair grades for fair exams

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Petition Against the perpetual low marks awarded to graded exam pupils.

It is so disheartening when you and your pupils have put so much hard work and effort into the graded classes, only to be rewarded with low or inconsistant marks. If children do not have the incentive to carry on because their exam results are constantly low, inconsistant or do not reflect their abilities, then they will either give up or we will lose them to schools that enter children through other organizations in which they can achieve a Distinction when they have ability and work hard. Alternatively, we as teachers will have to stop entering most children into RAD exams. It mocks our ability as teachers if we are unable to put children through exams without achieving some good marks across a session. The new syllabus, granted, is hard, but it's a challenge that is readily accepted and enjoyed. However, I do not think the graded exams need to be marked so harshly. After all, is that not the purpose of the Vocational exams, to give the talented dancers of the future a platform to excel? Surely the graded exams should be accessible to all competent, able young dancers that attend our average schools and there should be some students that are capable of achieving a low distinction, leaving the high distinctions for the elite dancers. We are at severe risk of losing pupils to other dance schools that teach alternative syllabi where Distinctions are an achievable goal.

The RAD is at present one of the few organizations insisting that it's teachers adhere to the Continued Professional Development scheme. Therefore ensuring that RAD teachers practice safe teaching methods protecting the children that we train. We continually strive to be the best and most qualified ballet teachers that we can be. There are so many non-qualified dance teachers out there, doing untold damages to vulnerable young bodies, but it is a competitive market and many parents are not aware of this. The tough marking system that the RAD enforces does not make it any easier for us qualified, highly trained ballet teachers to stay afloat in such a saturated business of after school activities and other dance organizations.

We need to be supported by our governing dance organization, not undermined. After all, we pay a lot of money annually in dance exam fees, course fees and membership subscriptions. If you agree with the statement above please give it your support by signing this ipetition. The RAD may not listen to one or two voices, but if we can get enough support then perhaps they might!!

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