Category Archives: Accountability

Phonics test – Nick Gibb fails again

Schools minister Nick Gibb is crowing, once again, that thousands more children are ‘on track to become fluent readers’. Improved pass rates in the Phonics test show no such thing. “163,000 more 6-year-olds are on track to become fluent readers … Continue reading

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Challenging the tyranny of the Phonics Check

It is hard to compete with Margaret Clark’s tenacity in challenging the deeply flawed Phonics Screening Check along with  schools minister Nick Gibb’s dogmatic support of Synthetic Phonics. After editing two books in a single year, she has just completed a … Continue reading

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“Pull yourself together, child!”

England is in the middle of a mental health crisis for young people, and a major cause is the way in which they are being put under pressure to achieve. It happens at university: 146 students killed themselves in 2016 … Continue reading

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Primary school tests: what can parents do?

We recently published information about Key Stage 2 SATs in a blog post called Protecting children from primary school tests. It was based on the official instructions sent to headteachers by the Standards and Testing Agency, known as the Assessment and … Continue reading

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The looming Baseline test disaster

    The Government are intent on introducing baseline tests of 4-year-old children. This could have dire consequences by putting a cap on many children’s learning.  The tests will give teachers the impression that each child’s future potential can be calculated. … Continue reading

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Protecting children from primary school tests

The damage caused by primary school testing to children’s education and wellbeing is now very clear. Among other effects, it has helped to create a crisis in children’s mental health. As we know, large numbers of children are now suffering … Continue reading

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Progress 8 and the North East

Schools in North East England are under attack again. According to Progress 8 scores, its schools are the least effective in the country, with the highest percentage coming ‘below the floor’. But Progress 8 is a flawed and misleading measure. … Continue reading

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