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re. https://www.tes.com/news/school-news/breaking-views/take-absurdly-difficult-english-test-and-see

Discussion in 'Secondary' started by opeers, Feb 11, 2016.

  1. opeers

    opeers New commenter

    Dear TES, you mention in this report: https://www.tes.com/news/school-new...-english-test-and-see-why-generation-students that the 'absurdly difficult' English test required students to identify the phrase 'if I were' as subjunctive. Did none of your editorial team think to point out that 'if I were' is not subjunctive? It is conditional. The subjunctive and the conditional and different in English - as in other languages, such as Spanish, which is taught mainstream in state schools now. In similar wise, apropos ignorance, I have known heads of English who have insisted to me that the comma should always go before the speech-mark, even though this is again grossly wrong, and should, if marked correctly, lose the students marks. Is it any wonder so many of our lead politicians went to Eton? We are disempowering students by failing ourselves to know basic English SPG. Are our expectations really that low?
  2. never_expect_anything

    never_expect_anything Occasional commenter

    What on Earth are you talking about, opeers?! 'If I were...' is subjunctive! The conditional is in the latter part of the sentence (in this case: 'it would...'). And commas, generally speaking, should go before the speech mark (although you don't give a context for your apparent exception to this rule...). Oh, and speech mark is not hyphenated. By the way, what does 'in similar wise' mean? Can we guess you are not a native speaker?

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