Principal tells kids, “You’re more than your marks.” We applaud.

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By LOUISE AYLING

Beechboro Principal Len Christie (Image via Facebook: Len Christie)
Beechboro Principal Len Christie (Image via Facebook: Len Christie)

 

 

An Australian teacher has written a heartfelt letter to his students after the release of the school’s NAPLAN results.

Len Christie, the principal of Beechboro primary school in Western Australia, wrote a message of encouragement to his students in the school newsletter last Wednesday, the Daily Mail reports.

“I’d like you, your family, friends and teachers to remember that these tests are unable to measure all of what it is that makes you the valued person who you are,” Christie said in his letter.

The people who have created these tests and those that mark them don’t know you as well as your teachers know you, to the extent to which I know you and certainly not the way your family and friends know you,” he wrote.

The principal urged students not to place too much emphasis on their resultsinstead suggesting they recognise their strengths in aspects like language, arts or sport.

“They wouldn’t know you can write poetry and stories, play all types of different sports and have interesting and enjoyable hobbies,” he added.

The NAPLAN test is supposed to measure the numeracy and writing skills of students in year 3, 5 and 9. However the tests have been widely criticised in the past few years, and teachers and parents alike argued this year’s writing section was too challenging for students.

You can read the full letter below:

A Letter to all Students who sat NAPLAN this year

This week you would have received your NAPLAN test results. We are pleased that you tried your very best in these challenging tests and during the weeks and months leading up to them.

I’d like you, your family, friends and teachers to remember that these tests are unable to measure all of what it is that makes you the valued person who you are. The people who have created these tests and those that mark them don’t know you as well as your teachers know you, to the extent to which I know you and certainly not the way your family and friends know you.

They don’t know that many children at Beechboro Primary School speak one or more languages other than English. They also don’t know that you may be a great singer and dancer or that you can play a musical instrument really well. They also don’t know how well you can draw beautiful pictures.

They don’t know that you have a sense of humour which can bring a smile to your friend’s faces and make them laugh or that they can rely upon you to support them when they need a kind and encouraging word. They wouldn’t know that you can write poetry and stories, play all types of different sports and have interesting and enjoyable hobbies.

They also don’t know that you probably accept responsibility for taking care of your brothers or sisters from time to time. They don’t know that you have travelled to or come from fascinating places and had amazing experiences.

They don’t know how much you love spending time with your family and your close friends and they won’t know how much you are appreciated and loved by them.

You are trustworthy, kind and thoughtful and you try to do your best every day. Do they know that?

The NAPLAN test results give you some very specific information about yourself but it can’t say everything about who you are and what you have achieved.

I hope you are happy with your results and that they inspire you to do even better in literacy and numeracy. Just remember that there is so much more to describe who you are that can’t be shown in these scores.

Len Christie

Principal

9th September 2014

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