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These are 'necessary' goals

WE want young people to achieve their best. And we want to aim high.

"Yes, our targets are challenging, but from the evidence we have we believe they are achievable. We also believe they are necessary to provide clear focus and offer consistent information to parents and the wider community.

"Setting goals and targets is what every person, team and organisation does to succeed. We want schools to succeed.

"We must equip children with the skills that around 7 million adults do not at present have, and a grasp of literacy and numeracy is intrinsic.

"We are asking all schools to achieve what we know the best schools already achieve, and we want to support them as much as we can. There is already excellent work going on in schools nationally under inspirational heads.

"We will shortly publish our primary strategy which will build on the support that is available as well as building on current good practice and success, and outlining the way ahead. It will dispel the myth that our view of education in the early years is about regimented learning of the basics; or that tests and targets are the be-all and end-all of teaching or going to school."

Stephen Twigg MP is a schools minister

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