Mixed feeling about the canceled final exams
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Mixed feeling about the canceled final exams

In the Little household all were focused on the final DP exams in May, as both the children would sit these. With the cancelation of the IB exams, all of a sudden their school days were over.

By Liesl Little, receptionist and mother of Ben and Mia (both DP2)

A month ago, our family like many others with DP2 students were mentally preparing ourselves for our children to write their final exams in May. This would have been the final test since they started the challenging DP journey in September 2018. When our school closed on 16 March, because of the COVID-19 pandemic, our DP students continued their lessons remotely with the expectation that there would be an exam.

True ISUtrecht spirit

A week later, IB schools world-wide were informed by the IB Organisation that exams are cancelled, and a decision will be made as to how the final results will be calculated to ensure that students who qualify will still be awarded their IB Diploma. This led to a week of uncertainty and worry, but in true ISUtrecht spirit the teachers and students continued their remote lessons and revision to ensure they are prepared for anything.

Mixed feelings

On the Friday that the IB announced how results will be calculated there were mixed feelings of relief and disappointment. And just like that school was out for DP2, almost 2 months earlier than planned. As parents we feel our teachers have prepared our children well for their future studies and although a final exam would have given closure it was not going to teach them anything new other than how to cope with exam pressure over an extended period.

It doesn’t feel like we genuinely finished DP2

Ben – “I have mixed feelings, on the one side I would have liked to complete my finals, as I was already preparing for it and our teachers had spent the previous 18 months making sure we are prepared and can perform at our best. With exams cancelled there is a lack of closure and it does not feel like we genuinely finished DP2. On the bright side, I can now pursue interests of mine that I couldn’t before due to being busy with school and hopefully these hobbies and interests will allow me to explore exactly what I want to do later in life.”

I would still like to write my exams

Mia – “At first, I was thrilled about there no longer being exams, but then that feeling quickly dispersed once I realised that a huge milestone in my life had disappeared. The exams were like the final level, for which we have been training for months, but is no longer there. My time at school feels truncated. I am not satisfied with the outcome. To many this may seem strange because we were able to avoid the most nerve-racking assignment, out of many others, but despite that, all the hard work and worry was now for nothing. If I was given the opportunity to write the exams, I still would have taken it. For now, I will use this time beneficially and focus on teaching myself, independently, new activities. Hopefully this can be a valuable time to find out what exactly what I want to do with my life after uni.”