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Old 27.04.2014, 19:40
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Petition to change the entrance for Gymnasium in Canton Zürich

If you have a child in Canton Zürich who will sit for the entrance exam to attend Gymnasium, you may want to read this petition.

http://www.change.org/de/Petitionen/...-2?utm_source=
A rough google translation:

Every year in early March will the entrance examination for the long-time high school for approximately 3,500 sixth graders in the Canton of Zurich . Unlike in most other cantons and countries here decide one morning about the later life. - About half of the children do not pass the exam .

What many do not know , these are not, for example querying the compulsory education material. Is checked , an additional learning material ( to learn using a 200 - page book ) with a significantly higher degree of difficulty that is large extent only in the seventh high school class on the subject. Thus, the more difficult every year expectant examination remains in the realm of feasibility as possible , many primary schools offer the candidates an extra course , will be addressed in the exam. If that is not enough - and that's usually even with very good students of the case - the parents remains in the entire Canton nothing else than with their children every weekend to learn often night after night . Some make do with self-organized learning or tutoring groups , other staging regular group rehearsals with exam conditions. The other alternative , as it is practiced according to studies by two-thirds of Gymi - Kandiaten , is to visit year long and expensive private lessons, to be prepared for the big day . - A scandalous situation !

Fixes this abuse ! Abolish the Gymi exam!



Why ?

An examination of this dimension is not age-appropriate for 12 year olds . Many sensitive children fail in the exam, because they can not cope with the pressure of an examination of the importance and impact .
When examining it comes to a unique peak performance. They do not represent the long-term performance potential of a child. Drill is more important than talent. May form on the day on the way forward will decide .
The early selection installed late developers the way . The level of development is extremely variable at this age. Only half a year difference can be crucial for resilience and maturity.
An equal opportunity does not exist in the approach. Many children whose parents do not have the time , the money or the education to assist them in the preparation, the test does not exist or only enter not at all .
The preparatory courses are the responsibility of the schools and be handled and weighted very differently from them. That in the various neighborhoods and communities there are different conditions .
The Gymi exam is de facto an advance at the expense of children's selection for the university ( numerus clausus ) , which usually - in other countries and cantons - made ​​later . After Matur !
The Gymi verification is a significant disadvantage compared with other cantons ; they do is a tool to keep the deep Gymi quota and is a vehement limitation of educational opportunities. A 12- year old child from Zurich has not the same for the same performance opportunities to make the Matura, like a same age child from Basel! A glaring injustice !


alternative:

A total testimony from the pre -note possibly from several semesters and a recommendation from the teacher ( through an objection at any time) as it is handled as in most other cantons and countries. If necessary, a trial period.

A parliamentary initiative to abolish the test was launched in June 2013 and is currently in counseling. Light at the End of the Tunnel! We support the initiative .
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Old 27.04.2014, 20:32
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Re: Petition to change the entrance for Gymnasium in Canton Zürich

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An examination of this dimension is not age-appropriate for 12 year olds . Many sensitive children fail in the exam, because they can not cope with the pressure of an examination of the importance and impact .
When examining it comes to a unique peak performance. They do not represent the long-term performance potential of a child. Drill is more important than talent. May form on the day on the way forward will decide .
The early selection installed late developers the way . The level of development is extremely variable at this age. Only half a year difference can be crucial for resilience and maturity.

[...]

A total testimony from the pre -note possibly from several semesters and a recommendation from the teacher ( through an objection at any time) as it is handled as in most other cantons and countries. If necessary, a trial period.
Do not understand your issues. There are many other options to join the Gymi track at a later time. Just two and also three years after the first exam the next opportunities are available.

I am in accord with you about the test only selection criteria.

BUT:

Recommendation from the teacher is most likely the most stupid, biased, manipulative, in short questionable form of selection. My own opinion the system as it was, was the best. For those who do not know it, part of the marks from the previous years, called Vornoten/pre-marks, and part of the marks from the examination test was used to determine Gymi eligibility in Canton of Zurich. This system allowed all you asked for: less pressure for those who have been good in the past and possibility to get into Gymi for those who could excel in test, even if they had not so good marks because of a bad teacher-student relationship.

I do not see the low passing rate as it was as a bad sign. Especially considering that the "Vornoten" actually help.

PS: I got my entry credentials for University at a even later stage when I was already 23 years old. There is always a possibility to get a degree for those who really want.

PPS: As always, I do not assume or even expect that you will answer any of this with your own words and thoughts.
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Old 27.04.2014, 20:47
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Re: Petition to change the entrance for Gymnasium in Canton Zürich

i dont think going or not going to gymi is a matter of being "more talented" or "smarter"

people doing an apprenticeship are as rightful as gymi people to do a bachelor or a master after their apprenticeship and a 6months part time berufsmatura

to get a masters you can go both ways
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Old 28.04.2014, 08:55
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Re: Petition to change the entrance for Gymnasium in Canton Zürich

What a load of cow manure.

You get another two opportunities to join Gymnasium: after your second or your third year of secondary school. Unless they have changed the system, your previous grades count towards your exam score - this was why my secondary school teacher said I would probably not pass the exam, my "Vornote" was a 4.1 average. Well, I did pass the exam, without having to do the additional oral exam required for those who narrowly miss the minimum grade.

I think the issue is that they were talking about no longer counting your previous grades towards the exam grade, which I do feel is a bit of a problem for those with a fear of exams or who were not trained to do exams. But overall - not everyone is meant to go to Gymnasium, I got kicked out again myself and the fact that there are a finite number of places who are then ALL entitled to study whatever they want (except medicine) at whichever university in Switzerland, you have to limit the intake.

Also, once you are in Gymnasium, you still have to stay in, there is a probationary period to contend with and you have to maintain a certain standard of grades, otherwise you have to leave. I also think parents should maybe reconsider this obsession of having kids go to Gymnasium, it is not for everyone and a Swiss apprenticeship is a great thing to have. If you decide you want to go to university, you do a Berufsmatura, which gives you access to the "technical colleges". If you add on the Passerelle, you can go to the "old" universities just like everyone else.
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Old 19.07.2014, 03:00
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Re: Petition to change the entrance for Gymnasium in Canton Zürich

Sorry for reopening the thread, but the Gymi exam is still far from being kosher.

- many schools will not cover in class all the subjects required for the exam, so you'll either have to hope for good luck or you'll pay private preparatory classes.

- a common practice is to artificially increase the preferred pupil's grades to help reaching the coveted 4.5. Who's helping this? Hard to tell but it is an artificial skew in any case.

- if you come with a complicated familial background it's no surprise you won't make it, not even to the exam. Being a political rather leftist principle (equality of chances) some will just support abolishing the exam, others will hate it.

- the university admission doesn't involve an exam at all, yet the unfit still get properly filtered out during the first year. So we have an alternative, working and uncontested model right here in front of our noses.

Unfortunately I couldn't hear any voice expressing properly what is better for SWITZERLAND. Is there any societal/economical advantage in attracting more Gymi students? Many apprenticeship positions stay unoccupied even today, so I cannot imagine a change here will worsen anything.

I really think all this (mostly artificial) filtering only serves to save massively on educational costs. Living proof is the plethora of specialists imported year after year because of the very limited local availability. If you don't believe it, try to rationalize why there's a numerus clausus on medical school yet doctors are imported in waves. If I'm right with my assumption, this makes for very dirty politics because these savings are basically made on the backs of the local kids which get their opportunities heavily restricted. Nobody ever said becoming a mechanic is bad (I've seen this strawman argument lots), but being officially blocked to become anything else than a mechanic IS bad.
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Old 03.02.2017, 18:31
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Re: Petition to change the entrance for Gymnasium in Canton Zürich

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Sorry for reopening the thread, but the Gymi exam is still far from being kosher.

- many schools will not cover in class all the subjects required for the exam, so you'll either have to hope for good luck or you'll pay private preparatory classes.

- a common practice is to artificially increase the preferred pupil's grades to help reaching the coveted 4.5. Who's helping this? Hard to tell but it is an artificial skew in any case.

- if you come with a complicated familial background it's no surprise you won't make it, not even to the exam. Being a political rather leftist principle (equality of chances) some will just support abolishing the exam, others will hate it.

- the university admission doesn't involve an exam at all, yet the unfit still get properly filtered out during the first year. So we have an alternative, working and uncontested model right here in front of our noses.

Unfortunately I couldn't hear any voice expressing properly what is better for SWITZERLAND. Is there any societal/economical advantage in attracting more Gymi students? Many apprenticeship positions stay unoccupied even today, so I cannot imagine a change here will worsen anything.

I really think all this (mostly artificial) filtering only serves to save massively on educational costs. Living proof is the plethora of specialists imported year after year because of the very limited local availability. If you don't believe it, try to rationalize why there's a numerus clausus on medical school yet doctors are imported in waves. If I'm right with my assumption, this makes for very dirty politics because these savings are basically made on the backs of the local kids which get their opportunities heavily restricted. Nobody ever said becoming a mechanic is bad (I've seen this strawman argument lots), but being officially blocked to become anything else than a mechanic IS bad.

This is a very interesting reply. Educating kids here certainly means they may not reach their true potential. Simply not good enough...
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Old 11.02.2017, 19:43
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Re: Petition to change the entrance for Gymnasium in Canton Zürich

The Swiss answer is "we want only the best in our schools". If this translates in the end to "we want only the best doctors", then coupling it with the huge imports of medical personnel I could say Swiss treat their offspring as being dumber than otherwise. Either way: from what I can see around it's not uncommon to send your kids to study abroad for less money and less hassle (because the same harassing goes on in the university years) only to have them back with the same universally recognized diploms and exactly the same opportunities. All in all the answer is yes: the country saves massively on educational costs. This is not bad per se unless done on the backs of our kids (yes I have my own dogs in this race) and unless not called by its true name.
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Old 11.02.2017, 19:51
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Re: Petition to change the entrance for Gymnasium in Canton Zürich

my son is preparing for the Gymi right now. Yes, he has to learn more things that taught in the normal school . But it is an exaggeration that they have to study years long, night by night etc. If they are clever + matured!!!! enough, extra 10 morning courses could be enough to be prepared to pass the test. What is not exceptable for me is that they have this Probezeit (trial period) in Gymi which can be a mental torture for a lot of kids.
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Old 11.02.2017, 20:04
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Re: Petition to change the entrance for Gymnasium in Canton Zürich

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(because the same harassing goes on in the university years)
Telling kids they have to learn to progress is harsssing now?

In the bastardized words of House Stark, summer is coming, snowflake...
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Old 12.02.2017, 00:07
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Re: Petition to change the entrance for Gymnasium in Canton Zürich

Thumbed up and a little note to say I could not agree more with you.
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Old 12.02.2017, 15:59
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Re: Petition to change the entrance for Gymnasium in Canton Zürich

"What is not exceptable for me is that they have this Probezeit (trial period) in Gymi which can be a mental torture for a lot of kids."

Oh, I even had that when I began Sek and also at Teacher's College. And I had Probezeit in every job I started. Get used to it. Educate your child to survive hardships and to stay cool and composed.
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Old 12.02.2017, 16:25
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Re: Petition to change the entrance for Gymnasium in Canton Zürich

I think it's more a mental torture for the parents.

Went through the same with my daughter. I was was scared shitless that she wouldn't make it, although the other alternatives would have also been more than good. As a single mom with limited finances, did however pay a bittle lit for extra Matura preparation tuition, as she wasn't feeling so secure about her maths.

She's doing pretty well at the Uni Zürich, and is happy.

And???
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Old 12.02.2017, 17:56
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Re: Petition to change the entrance for Gymnasium in Canton Zürich

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- if you come with a complicated familial background it's no surprise you won't make it, not even to the exam. Being a political rather leftist principle (equality of chances) some will just support abolishing the exam, others will hate it.
In my experience, leftists tend to fixate on "equality of outcome" - which inevitably results in a downward spiral for everyone involved.
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Old 13.02.2017, 10:09
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Re: Petition to change the entrance for Gymnasium in Canton Zürich

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This is a very interesting reply. Educating kids here certainly means they may not reach their true potential. Simply not good enough...
Maybe they just have no potential...


I wonder how I ever survived Gymi and uni. The probation period! The exams! How dare they. Oh wait: I was simply a diligent student. Granted today, apparently, asking students to study (see what I did there - students-study) is "harassment"
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Old 13.02.2017, 10:19
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Re: Petition to change the entrance for Gymnasium in Canton Zürich

So many parents live by proxy. Get a life!

Thanks god for Probezeit :-)
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Old 13.02.2017, 10:25
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Re: Petition to change the entrance for Gymnasium in Canton Zürich

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Their children are always the best, most beautiful and smartest ones and if not, everybody else - and gymnasiums, too - needs to change to accommodate them and keep them on a pedestal. Get a life!
Jup. All precious little snowflakes with tremendous potential that, sadly, nobody but themselves seem to see

Most people are average. That's why it's called average. By far not everyone has the brains or diligence or - dare I say it - potential to go to Gymi and later uni. There's a reason only about 25% of the Swiss population go down that road and it's certainly not because they are overall less smart than others. Thankfully, contrary to other countries, there's hundreds of perfectly good alternatives. I realize this is difficult to grasp for some people as many are used to the "go to uni/college or you'll be nothing"-kind of environment, but that's simply not true in Switzerland.

Also, Swiss culture cares mighty little about literally everbody being the best at everything and having the potential to do great things. That type of competition and subsequent rewarding is just not that relevant, common or even desired here.

So stop complaining about the system.
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Old 13.02.2017, 13:11
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Re: Petition to change the entrance for Gymnasium in Canton Zürich

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The Swiss answer is "we want only the best in our schools". If this translates in the end to "we want only the best doctors", then coupling it with the huge imports of medical personnel I could say Swiss treat their offspring as being dumber than otherwise. Either way: from what I can see around it's not uncommon to send your kids to study abroad for less money and less hassle (because the same harassing goes on in the university years) only to have them back with the same universally recognized diploms and exactly the same opportunities. All in all the answer is yes: the country saves massively on educational costs. This is not bad per se unless done on the backs of our kids (yes I have my own dogs in this race) and unless not called by its true name.
The actual answer is that we want what we believe is best for our children, just like all other parents and the fact that you think otherwise suggest you have very limited interaction with Swiss parents. If the Swiss system was as bad as you claim do you really believe Swiss parents think so little of their children that they would allow it to continue??? Of course not!

The Swiss system is not perfect, but it does provide many opportunities for kids to switch between streams, stay back a year or indeed to on to third level education later after doing an apprenticeship etc., without any stigma attached. More importantly it provides great opportunities for those who either don't want to or lack the ability to go on to college.

After 28 years here most of my friends are Swiss rather than expats and I tell you that I never heard of a single parent sending their children to college abroad for the reasons you state, so no it is definitely not common as you claim! Over the years I have trained Swiss apprentices, supervised graduates and even spoken at colleges on a few occasions and yes I can confirm at the the hassle continues at college, if by hassle you mean the need to work your ass off to qualify. Otherwise no.

And then there are your cost assertions, which are clearly not supported by the OECD data either per student or per capita:



This is without doubt one of the biggest pieces of garbage I have ever read on this forum and that is saying something.
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Old 13.02.2017, 13:48
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Re: Petition to change the entrance for Gymnasium in Canton Zürich

There are many (Swiss) ways that lead to higher education, but all of them require a lot of work and the will to go through it whatever may come your way!

For example, my youngest is in vocational training as a baker-confectioner, does simoultanously the courses for Berufsmatur. In 1.5 years time when she graduates as a baker-confectioner. She then has to work 2 days a week and go to school for 3 days a week to reach (Swiss) A-levels.
After which she can then go to study at any Uni in CH.

What is special in this case, she is handicapped from birth and has a dirt poor mother who can't support her financially......but she is determined to get this education and puts in all energy she has to reach that goal.

And then people complain about Probezeit in Gymi, which is nothing else than separating the wheat from the chaff.
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Old 13.02.2017, 13:55
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Re: Petition to change the entrance for Gymnasium in Canton Zürich

I'm not the greatest expert on education, but I would suggest that Switzerland is one of the better countries to be if you don't make it to gym/uni. There seems to be less discrimination and more opportunities for people who didn't go there than in other countries.
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Old 13.02.2017, 13:57
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Re: Petition to change the entrance for Gymnasium in Canton Zürich

Just to clarify, when "kids don't survive the probation period", we don't actually take them outside to get shot, even in our terrible, heartless, "no-gold-stars-just-for-showing-up" system. Some people appear to need the obvious spelled out...

If your kid is a borderline case, consider why this is so. They may actually be bored or have the sort of friends that drag down their school work, for these people going to Gymi may actually be a great idea. For those that are struggling despite applying themselves, please consider an apprenticeship, it's an excellent foundation to have and depending on how driven they are, they can still go on to do higher education at a later stage.

The UK government is now trying to push the apprenticeship model as the next big thing and the initiative is, surprise, based on the Swiss model. As for "bragging rights", clearly an influencing factor in many of the more questionable parenting decisions - I'm more impressed by someone who can build/make/fix something to a high standard than by a doctorate in Madonna studies.
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