I spent the weekend in Delhi, at the TAISI (The Association of International Schools in India) conference. The theme of the conference was the role of design and design thinking in education, and much of the talk was of the inadequacy of the current, exam-driven system.
I heard about a fascinating experiment which took place early this academic year in the USA, at one of the more prestigious private schools. In this experiment, grade 11 students were required to retake their final grade 10 science test, exactly three months after they took the test for the first time. (The students were not given any notice of the re-take)
First time they took the test, the average grade was B+
Second time they took the test, the average grade was F.
This is why I hesitate to equate exam grades with learning.