Cash for borderline juniors upsets headteachers

9th February 2007 at 00:00
A drive to encourage schools to focus their efforts on nine and 10-year-old pupils at risk of narrowly missing government test targets has been condemned by heads.

Cumbria council has become the latest authority to devote extra funding to borderline pupils, in this case those on the cusp of achieving the benchmark level 4 in key stage 2 tests.

Heads say the move, in which extra cash will be targeted at selected Year 5 and 6 children, is unfair because others, notably gifted and talented or special needs pupils, are neglected. Local authorities and the Government are concentrating on improving test statistics instead of seeking to help every child reach its full potential, they say.

Last week, The TES revealed how a project run by the secondary national strategy is targeting extra support at borderline C to E grade GCSE students in English and maths.

Myron Hyrnknow, head of Askam village school in Furness, said he had been appalled to receive a letter offering the extra support from Cumbria council for pupils whose KS1 results suggested they might just miss level 5.

"It may help a small group of children, but what about the rest?" he told a conference held in Birmingham by the NASUWT.

"What about pupils who cannot achieve a level 4 and those with special educational needs?"

A Cumbria council spokesman said that 48 of its primaries were receiving around pound;100,000 between them to pay for extra support for borderline pupils in years five and six. The funding came from a government grant set up specifically for this purpose.

He said: "It's not necessarily about achieving targets. It's about giving children the support they need."

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number

Comments

The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now