TSAs are important to schools to show where they might be going wrong, says Ma On Shan Methodist Primary School principal, Chan Kam-fai. He says the Territory-wide System Assessment is an important guide to show a school's strengths and key areas that needed change.
The tests are very unpopular. At a special Legislative Council hearing last Sunday, the TSA Concern Group submitted a 43,623-signature petition to end the exam for Primary Three students. The hearing was attended by more than 100 members of the public, including parents, educators and students.
Speaking to Young Post yesterday, Chan said the assessment lets schools keep track of students' progress. "The test shows us what level our students are at and which aspects are particularly weak," he said. For example, if the results show students have a hard time forming proper questions, the school can adjust their strategies.
He added that even without TSAs, students would still be under intense pressure. "If the Education Bureau scrapped the city-wide assessment, the schools would still have their own internal assessment to test students. So it's better to focus on how they can make the TSA more suitable to pupils' levels and needs."
Young Post reader Leung Ho-yi from Tsuen Wan Public Ho Cheun Yiu Memorial College says that scrapping the exams would do nothing to lift the pressure from students.
"Parents will arrange a lot of activities, like piano lessons or sports, so young people won't have enough time to relax. Their childhood will still be affected," she said. "Parents and schools have the responsibility to ensure a better school life for us."