All examination tasks would be checked again in the ministry for their appropriateness and possibly revised, says a letter to the school management. In addition, content that is assigned to the fourth semester should not be relevant to the exam in order to prevent imponderables for the upcoming lessons in the coming school half year. The measures were decided to secure the implementation of the nationwide central high school diploma, so the Ministry of Education.
School management association for average grade instead of examination
The school management association of Lower Saxony (SLVN) had spoken out on Wednesday for the waiver of Abitur exams and final theses for secondary and secondary school students. Instead, average grades should be formed, according to a statement by the SLVN. However, there could be voluntary replacement exams for both high school graduates and for grades 9 and 10. In view of the high corona numbers and the turbulence in schools, it is “not justifiable” to take the Abitur and the other exams, said the association’s vice-chairwoman, Katharina Badenhop, to the NDR in Lower Saxony.
Lower Saxony could play a pioneering role
“We cannot imagine that the Abitur in 2021 can take place as before,” said Badenhop. Politicians must be aware of the fears and worries that exist in schools. To make the tasks easier or to delete content, she considers “messing around”. “That is not enough for us as a measure,” explained the headmistress from Hanover. The school management association would like a nationwide discussion about the cancellation of exams. Badenhop refers to the infection situation: “In the meantime, this has come to a head that nationwide considerations have to be made. Lower Saxony could play the pioneering role and say: We are taking this step.”
GEW: Abitur without an examination would have to be recognized nationwide
The teachers’ union GEW supports the initiative of the school principals. “For everyone involved in the schools, we are in an extremely special situation due to the pandemic,” said the GEW state chairwoman Laura Pooth. “In this emergency, the logical consequence would be to cancel all final exams in general schools.” The GEW also points to the consequences of such a step. Pooth continues: “The Abitur exams in Lower Saxony can be dispensed with if the higher education entrance qualification acquired in 2021 is recognized nationwide. We therefore call on Minister of Education and Cultural Affairs Grant Hendrik Tonne to ensure this recognition within the framework of the Conference of Ministers of Education.”
Minister fears high school diploma with “corona blemish”
SPD politician Tonne would like to hold on to the exams. It is not in the interests of the students if the degrees have a “Corona flaw”, according to his ministry. The students would have the right to obtain “high quality” degrees. However: the ministry does not rule out that something will change in this course. It is hoped “that the general shutdown will stabilize the overall situation in such a way that these plans hold”.
Philologists want to keep the “certificate of quality”
A clear rejection of the proposal of the school management association comes from the philologists association, in which many high school teachers are organized. “The Abitur is a certificate of quality,” said association boss Horst Audritz. “We don’t think it makes sense to rush to do without it.” Audritz refers to the Abitur last year – that worked relatively well despite the lockdown at the time. Not that many classes have been canceled this year. In addition, the schools would have the opportunity, if necessary, to develop their own tasks – from the philologists’ point of view, all this speaks in favor of sticking to the previous plans. “If the incidence figures should increase enormously – 300, 400 – and social life is completely suspended, then you have to rethink,” said Audritz.