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An hour too long;The NUT conference;In brief;Easter Conferences

THE literacy hour was attacked by delegates who said their fears had been realised. Other parts of the curriculum had been crowded out, while workloads continued to grow, NUT members said.

"Mr Blunkett says he wants a broad and balanced curriculum," said south London teacher Sarah Catterall. "It's hard to be broad and balanced and narrow and prescriptive at the same time."

Members voted to campaign against prescription and streaming, oppose the numeracy hour if it created extra work, and support NUT heads and teacher-governors who were being asked to set unrealistic targets for schools.

Delegates raised concerns over the amount of testing of pupils - especially the current Year 3, the cohort who must meet Mr Blunkett's key stage 2 targets in 2002. "They'll be the most tested pupils on the planet," one predicted.

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