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Last Updated: Friday, 10 November 2006, 06:22 GMT
NI pupils sitting transfer test
Children sitting an exam
The last transfer test is to take place in 2008
More than 15,000 NI children have sat the first exam in this year's 11-plus transfer test.

The test is causing controversy because some people accuse the government of using it and academic selection as bargaining tools in politics.

The government says academic selection will not be banned after 2008 if the assembly gets back to work soon.

In most areas about three-quarters of primary seven children sat the first part of the test.


However, in the Southern Board area, where some schools operate without the 11-plus, under the Dickson Plan only half the pupils will do the test.

The government plans to scrap the current 11-plus transfer test in two years time.

However, as a concession to the DUP at the Saint Andrews talks in October, it was agreed that a new assembly could keep some form of academic selection.

Plans to drop the 11-plus were first put in motion by Sinn Fein's Martin McGuinness when he was education minister and have been followed through by direct rule ministers since.

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