Reading your report about the new language specifications, whereby students are not required to answer questions on set texts, but have the choice or opportunity (or dare I say "entitlement"?) to answer questions on an author or poet of their choice, I am reminded of the allegedly fictitious examination question in a lower school French test.
The pupils were asked either to describe the role of the father in French family life, bearing in mind the historical perspective, regional and cultural differences and the effects of class, or draw a picture of a French house and label the rooms.
Unfortunately, many of the weaker candidates chose the first option.
Tony Mills, Stockton-on-Tees.