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O’Dowd offers best wishes to all Primary 7 pupils

Education Minister, John ODowd, has expressed his best wishes for all children in year 7 across the north of Ireland.
Friday, 9 November 2012

Speaking ahead of the start of unregulated admissions tests this weekend, the Minister said: “I wish the very best of luck to all children in year 7, whether they are sitting tests or not, as they prepare for transfer to the post-primary phase. This step represents a major life change and can therefore be a nervous time.

“The numbers choosing to sit entrance tests are not necessarily an indication of parental support for academic selection – many parents feel pressurised into putting their children through these tests and consider that the grammar schools have given them no choice. However many parents also understand that their children do not have to sit entrance tests to go to a good school. There are numerous excellent non-grammar schools in our system which do not force children to sit entrance tests.

“The figures quoted in the media for the number of children sitting entrance tests are misleading as a significant number of children will sit both tests and thus the actual number of children sitting entrance tests will certainly be lower.”

Notes to editors:

1. The Department of Education has launched a new ‘Education Works’ advertising campaign. The campaign encourages families to play, talk, read and count with their child and to ‘Get Involved Because Education Works’.

  • Watch out for the ads on television, radio and outdoor locations. The campaign highlights the vital role families can play in helping children do well at school and improve their life chances.
  • Visit the nidirect website for more information.
  • Watch the TV ad on the Department’s YouTube channel.

2. See photos from the Department of Education in our flickr collection.

3. Media enquiries to the Department of Education’s Communications Team on Tel: 028 9127 9207. Out of office hours, contact the Duty Press Officer via pager number 076 99 715 440, and your call will be returned.