Is it time to throw a spanner into the Sats tests machine?

24th April 2009 at 01:00

In the 30 plus years I have spent in education, I have been required to jump on every bandwagon devised by meddling politicians who've neither had the learning nor the experience to consider their strategies. I have known excellent teachers overburdened and criticised for failing to implement these strategies and who have left the profession. I have seen enthusiastic primary pupils sickened by hours of literacy and numeracy, knowing that next year and the next will be just the same.

It appears that almost every week someone produces an idea that is imposed on the teaching force without consultation. Supposed experts are called upon to produce papers that are merely an excuse for them to defend whatever theories they have about aspects of education.

The revolt led by the unions against the Sats is the tip of the iceberg. This is just one of many indefensible ideas that could be discarded. Because of government interference, we are breeding a generation of disaffected pupils who have never known the sheer joy of learning because the "fun" has been effectively quashed by a too rigid timetable geared towards passing tests.

I think the time has come for politicians to leave education to the professionals.

Lynne Potter, Former primary teacher, Ofsted inspector and primary LEA adviser, Hexham, Northumberland.

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