Mr Gove's bright ideas fail to impress

So, education secretary Michael Gove thinks cranking up the test and exam production line even further is going to help teachers and pupils "set higher expectations" for "what children can master at different ages".

Perhaps he should review the history of his party's incursions into education. The seminal Task Group on Assessment and Testing report, which established the assessment procedures for the introduction of England's first national curriculum in 1988, emphasised developmental learning based on assessment of children "working at different paces".

The current interpretation is clearly based on the "rat race" model of first past the post and the Devil take the hindmost.

Professor Bill Boyle, School of Education, University of Manchester.

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