Magazine article Times Educational Supplement

Brains Aren't Everything, Says Boarding Chief: News

Magazine article Times Educational Supplement

Brains Aren't Everything, Says Boarding Chief: News

Article excerpt

Top boarding schools risk turning their feeder schools into exam factories because they are too focused on the results of intelligence tests, a leading principal has warned.

Christian Heinrich, chairman of the Boarding Schools' Association (BSA) in the UK, said that many top boarding schools professed to believe in the importance of well-rounded students but the way they selected students did little to reflect that.

Mr Heinrich, headmaster of Cumnor House preparatory school in Sussex, for children aged 4-13, told the BSA's annual principals' conference that many senior schools were "too narrowly focused on the results of tests on cognitive processing".

"While senior boarding schools avow the same beliefs as preps ... about a roundedness that develops the person and their character as well as the individual elements of mind, body and spirit, it is so much more practical to have an entrance exam that excludes firstly on cognitive ability, secondly on a presumed potential and thirdly on the character and all- round performance," he said.

Mr Heinrich added that the focus on intelligence testing meant that students who were "good all-rounders" were "being defeated in the entry process by that first hurdle". …

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