Category Archives: Uncategorized

SATs tests are still a shocking failure

Despite intensive test preparation and enormous stress for children and teachers, Key Stage 2 SATs tests for 2018 are a disaster once again. Figures published today show that only 64% of children passed Reading, Writing and Maths. That means 1 … 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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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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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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Book launches

Beyond the exam factory Alternatives to high-stakes testing Events are being held around England to present and discuss this new book from More Than A Score – a broad coalition of the largest teacher union NEU, parents groups, researchers, and … Continue reading

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Time to bin the Phonics Check

The phonics check was supposedly set up as a ‘light-touch’ diagnostic tool. It is neither light nor diagnostic. It is another high-stakes test, used by Ofsted to judge schools, and it diagnoses nothing. It is not diagnostic because it cannot … Continue reading

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Phonics and the PIRLS test: time to end Government interference

Schools Minister Nick Gibb has hardly stopped crowing because England has risen from 10th to 8th place in the international PIRLS reading test. He claims personal credit, accrediting this result everything to the Phonics Check and his insistence on synthetic … Continue reading

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