Pointless tests

12th September 2008 at 01:00
John Dunford is right ("Let's scrap Sats", TES, September 5). How can schools hope to cope with yet another raft of national tests in functional skills after the Sats fiasco?

John Dunford is right ("Let's scrap Sats", TES, September 5). How can schools hope to cope with yet another raft of national tests in functional skills after the Sats fiasco? They serve no educational end except to fail schools. But are functional skills tests an alternative? In English, at least, not on the evidence of the three awarding bodies' 2008 pilot tests.

Functioning effectively in language is about working confidently together in both spoken and written contexts. Setting pupils solitary tasks in separated "skills" exams has next to nothing to do with that.

Keith Davidson, Hemel Hempstead, Herts.

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