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Labour pledges to scrap planned return to baseline assessments

Labour has also promised a review of key stage 1 and key stage 2 Sats at its manifesto launch today

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Labour has also promised a review of key stage 1 and key stage 2 Sats at its manifesto launch today

Labour has pledged to review Sats and abandon plans to reintroduce baseline assessments, in the manifesto it launched today.

The commitment comes after the "chaotic" introduction of new tougher Sats last year – with unions threatening a boycott unless action was taken.

In response, the Conservative government launched a consultation on its plans to reform primary assessment, with the eye-catching promise to scrap tests for seven-year-olds if a baseline assessment could be used instead.

No return of baseline

The proposal has gone down well with headteachers, but baseline assessments are still strongly opposed by classroom teacher unions.

Labour has said that its review of tests at age 7 and 11 would not include a reintroduction of the baseline assessment. It also mentions that: “The world’s most successful education systems use more continuous assessment, which avoids teaching for the test.”

The manifesto comes the week after Sats were taken by more than half a million Year 6 pupils. The pupils were tested in reading, maths, and spelling, grammar and punctuation (Spag). Teachers must also carry out assessments of children’s writing.

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