One of the things that drives you insane is doing the same thing over and over and getting the same results. At least that’s true when listening tests are involved.
Today was the high school second year exams at the school where I work and, as always, since that day, I approached it with a certain amount of trepidation. That was made worse when the guy who’d worried me before showed up.
As happened before, he pointed me toward the console as if it were my job to run it and, as before, I said “No way in hell.” However, because he was early, I expected he would perform a level check.
He didn’t and when the listening started it was obviously too low. He adjusted the volume a bit, but the levels were still too low. Finally, the last listening was low enough that he was forced to take extreme measures. At that point, one of my colleagues and the head of the English Department came rushing in with reports of complaints in a couple rooms.
I explained how there’d been no level check and was asked why none of the other teachers had, as they were supposed to, been in the hall making sure the listening was loud enough. I said that in 17 years at the school no one had told me we were supposed to do that.
I also pointed out that the technician had not done a volume check and while my colleague showed me how to intervene to adjust the volume, the department head told me that teachers weren’t actually supposed to touch the system, that was for the technicians.
They told me to stay put whilst they rushed around putting out fires. In the end we replayed the first two parts of the listening test and everything seemed okay.
And I’m sure it will be, until it’s time for the next listening test.