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Shelve damaging pupil testing plans demands charity

This news post is almost 6 years old

​Children In Scotland says plans to introduce standardised testing of pupils could be harmful.

Controversial national tests for school pupils have been condemned by a children’s charity.

Children In Scotland says Scottish Government’s plans to introduce standardised tests for primary and secondary students are inappropriate and will be detrimental.

Its chief executive Jackie Brock said the scheme must be shelved until it can be demonstrated that pupil wellbeing will be unaffected.

She said: “There is clear evidence that high stakes standardised testing, as proposed in the National Improvement Framework, can have a detrimental effect on all children’s wellbeing. We have particular ethical concerns about this policy.

There should be no national day, week or window when assessments must be completed – because of the pressure this puts on both pupils and teachers

“Testing P1 children is simply not appropriate for their age or stage of development. We also have serious doubts about the quality of evidence that will be obtainable from pupils in P1.

“Testing of the kind proposed is similarly unsuitable at the other end of the scale in S3 when young people are already under significant exam pressure.

“We recognise that assessment is central to teaching and learning but believe that arrangements for national standardised assessments should be made by teachers.

“There should be no national day, week or window when assessments must be completed – because of the pressure this puts on both pupils and teachers.”

Children in Scotland has expressed concerns over plans to reintroduce standardised assessment since the first minister’s announcement last year.

The charity has been working with LibDem MSP Liam McArthur, who will table a series of amendments aimed at deferring the introduction of tests during a debate on the education bill at Holyrood today (Tuesday).

Angela Constance, education secretary, said: “The National Improvement Framework will look at a range of existing and new evidence which will tell us how we are progressing and where support is required for improvement purposes.

“Parents will have access to more information about their children’s education and progress than ever before, on what they are doing well and where they might need extra help.”



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almost 6 years ago
Well done Children In Scotland about time somebody stood up to this nonsense of testing. Why is it so hard for gvts to understand that children can learn but in a fun way instead of sitting them down and testing them. its is ironic as well that they say this but at the same time pushing their play strategy.