Family Solicitors Ipswich – Does Grammar Matter?

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As we usher in a new generation who communicate more and more via mobile phones, text speak is creeping its way into our everyday language. However school children are once again being expected to take more substantial tests on spelling and grammar. A new statutory test of English grammar, punctuation and spelling will be introduced for children at the end of Key Stage 2 from May 2013. The introduction of this new test “reflects the Government’s beliefs that children should have mastered these important aspects of English by the time they leave primary school, and that appropriate recognition should be given to good use of English throughout their schooling”. This is according to the Department for Education. While some of the questions may seem straightforward, such as where to place a comma or a colon in a sentence, other aspects  such as identifying different types of adverbs or distinguishing between subordinating and co-ordinating connectives, may prove to be slightly more difficult.

While the Government is keen to make sure “a good use of English” comes through in children’s work, many adults who have already gone through the education system ask the question does correct grammar matter? Grammarians will argue that it ensures clarity and elegance in the way we speak and write. However for others, it is a series of archaic rules which bears little relation to how people really communicate in today’s world. Time will tell if this new exam will help highlight the importance of good spelling and grammar to children, or whether it will simply drive them further into the world of “txt spk”.

Amanda Crowe is a family law solicitor at Barker Gotelee, solicitors in Ipswich. Barker Gotelee specialise in school appeals.

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