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Testing over-kill

Each year, two million children sit national curriculum tests at seven, 11 and 14, making our pupils the most tested in the Western world. But the obsession with testing is not necessarily driving up standards.

The percentage of 11-year-olds achieving at least level 4 in English was 79 per cent last year, compared with 76 per cent in maths - well below the Government's target of 85 per cent. In just more than half of schools, results were higher than 2005, but in almost as many they were worse.

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