'Championing the rights of children'

Headteachers urged to reject tests on four-year olds

Garry Mon 04 May 2015 06:34

Headteachers have been urged to reject tests on four-year olds to be introduced later this year if they don't think they are right for pupils.

 Headteachers have been urged to reject tests on four-year olds to be introduced later this year if they don't think they are right for pupils.

The government has introduced optional so-called standarised baseline assessments for children starting their reception year in 2015.

Some of the questions included in these tests have come under criticism for being "crazy". One question is to ask a child to say "parrot", and then ask them to say it without the "p".

These tests are intended to enable to chart progress in the next seven years up to when the children are tested on the national curriculum by 11 years old.

Schools will be under pressure to carry out the exams because they will be judged on their performance in league tables.

But a motion was carried at a conference in Liverpool calling on the government to "stop imposing external, educationally questionable tests on our youngest school children" and trust early years professionals to assess the needs of children at this stage of their education.

Judy Shaw, a delegate from Yorkshire, said: "I'm deeply concerned about the intended introduction of standardised baseline tests, which, from September, will be administered to four and five-year-olds in the first six weeks of school."

Although the tests are optional, there will be pressure on school leaders to adopt them, she suggested, adding that at such as young age, most children will nor show their true abilities in a test that is taken out of the context of their familiar learning environment.

Read more... (Daily Telegraph - 2 May)