School tests are in chaos say teachers

Lancashire's teachers have backed a national call to void the results of this year's controversial Sats test following a second leak of test papers.

Thursday, 12th May 2016, 8:13 am
Some of Lancashire's protesting teachers in London. Simon Wallace, Barnacre Rd Primary headteacher is fourth from the left.

While the National Union of Teachers wants the Department for Education to ignore this year’s results the National Association of Headteachers urged schools to “continue to administer the test in a low key way.”

A day of action organised by worried parents saw nearly a quarter of the affected pupils at one Preston school not turning up for class.

The Statutory Assessment Tests taking place this week have this year faced up to as many as 18 separate amendments.

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A “day of action” organised by parents in Lancaster and Morecambe saw children being kept off school on protest at the level of testing, which teachers say is too hard.

Changes mean pupils are no longer graded but only pass or fail, with “failures” having to resit the tests at high school.

The protest was followed by a rally of teachers and union members in London.

Among them was Longridge’s Barnacre Road School head Simon Wallace who said: “I didn’t do anything to encourage my parents to take part in the boycott and only saw a note about it (the strike) on social media.

“I attached the link on the usual newsletter which was sent out to parents on the Friday.

Not having been involved in any dialogue with parents I was absolutely shocked when we found that 23 per cent of children didn’t come in.

“I had informed them very late so this was a clear indication of the strength of feeling among parents.

Last month the Government came under attack after scrapping baseline assessments for infants, saying they didn’t work.

Then it was forced to abandon the KS1 spelling, grammar and punctuation tests after the test papers appeared online. Now and investigation is under way about the latest leak. Plans to force all schools to become academies saw a U-turn at the weekend.