Teach to the test or miss our targets

24th January 2003 at 00:00
STEPHEN Twigg's letter to headteachers (TES, January 10) told us that, "Our teachers need not only to know about these changes (to national tests) but to be clear how they might adapt their teaching to prepare children effectively."

Teachers do need to know about the changes but I am surprised, and not a little dismayed, to have the minister for schools instructing us to "prepare children for exams" by adapting the curriculum specifically to raise the number of level 4s.

The national curriculum and the national strategy frameworks are statutory.

It is these that determine what (and to some extent how) we teach. National tests are not, and should never be, goals or ends in themselves.

To be now told to "adapt teaching to the test" so that the Government can reach its (arbitrary) national targets is disgraceful.

Alex Wilkinson

Christ Church junior school

Pendennis Road

Downend, South Gloucestershire

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