There will be a greater focus on English this summer in the efforts of tutors coaching for the Kent Test.
This was the prediction of Peter Read, specialist in school admissions and appeals, speaking at the National Tutoring Conference held in London on 1 April.
Of the three parts which made up the re-shaped multiple choice Kent Test in 2014, namely Reasoning (Verbal and Non-verbal), Maths and English, English was the one in which scores were lowest, and particularly for boys.
No great surprise about this, as in 2014, the English paper in this form was making its first appearance. Identifying errors in spelling, anomalies in punctuation and deviations in grammar could have been relatively unrehearsed skills for many candidates – and perhaps the level of difficulty pitched by the test setters was too high.
Expect therefore a reaction this year, as tutors and parents put a new emphasis on ‘SPAG’. As for children – their best course of action, as always, is to take refuge in books, books and books – for there is no better way, both in terms of pleasure and language awareness, than broad and attentive reading.