If the PM trusts teachers, why does he obsess about Sats' 'accountability'?

6th November 2009 at 00:00

Gordon Brown may believe that primary school Sats hold schools to account, but many parents across the UK do not agree ("I want to free teachers to work small miracles", October 30).

More than 70 per cent of the world's best performing prep schools here in Britain do not use Sats tests with their pupils, and those that do have not allowed the testing to narrow the curriculum.

Parents do not feel the need to rely on league tables and tests to decide whether their child is receiving a high quality education; they can make that decision themselves based on the individual educational success and progress made by their son or daughter and the acknowledged excellence of prep schools.

At the Independent Association of Prep Schools, we fully support the National Association of Head Teachers' (NAHT) campaign to remove mandatory Sat testing and agree that the process can cause detriment to children by narrowing the curriculum. We look forward to the results of the NAHT's consultation and hope the Government will come to the same conclusion as parents when it considers the future of Sat tests - that they are unnecessary and limiting to a child's education.

John Tranmer, Headmaster, The Froebelian School, Leeds, and chairman of the Independent Association of Prep Schools.

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