Re­source to com­bat stress

Rutherglen Reformer - - Election Special - Dou­glas Dickie

School pupils get­ting ready to sit ex­ams in Ruther­glen and Cam­bus­lang could ben­e­fit from a re­source to com­bat stress.

South La­nark­shire Coun­cil has in­tro­duced the beat­ing exam stress tech­niques (BEST) re­source into schools.

The scheme was orig­i­nally de­vel­oped by a group of ed­u­ca­tional psy­chol­o­gists, Skills De­vel­op­ment Scot­land and the Con­struc­tion In­dus­try Train­ing Board to help young peo­ple in their ap­pren­tice­ship en­try tests.

Since then, BEST has been re­viewed to suit all forms of as­sess­ments, in­clud­ing class tests, unit as­sess­ments and SQA ex­am­i­na­tions.

The pro­gramme was ini­tially launched in De­cem­ber last year in Hamil­ton and a fur­ther meet­ing with head teach­ers was held last month.

Psy­cho­log­i­cal ser­vices have also vis­ited chil­dren’s homes to pro­mote the use of BEST.

Coun­cil­lors on an ed­u­ca­tion com­mit­tee met yes­ter­day, Tues­day, to dis­cuss the de­vel­op­ment of BEST.

In a re­port, they were told BEST “in­cludes sim­ple, so­lu­tion­fo­cused and cog­ni­tive be­havioural ap­proaches.”

The re­port adds: “It is hoped that through the use of BEST, young peo­ple will ben­e­fit through feel­ing calmer and more con­fi­dent about exam sit­u­a­tions and that the pro­gramme will con­trib­ute to im­proved at­tain­ment lev­els.”

Pupils at the area’s four sec­ondary schools are cur­rently pre­par­ing to sit ex­ams.

Ear­lier this year, a re­port by the Univer­sity of St An­drew’s con­cluded that pupils in Scot­tish schools were ex­pe­ri­enc­ing high lev­els of stress lev­els sur­round­ing ex­ams.

The study, which was sup­ported by the World Health Or­gan­i­sa­tion, looked at 42 coun­tries and found Scot­land was sec­ond only to Malta in teenagers re­port­ing is­sues with school work.

Help is there Se­nior pupils, like this group at Stonelaw, could be helped out by BEST if they are strug­gling to cope with their ex­ams

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