NUT News - End SATs and give us time to teach
End SATs and give us time to teach.
“Abolish SATs – they’re utterly useless and they drive children, teachers and parents nuts”
Michael Rosen (former Children’s Laureate)
The campaign gathers momentum
All around the country parents, teachers, school leaders and children have been getting involved in our campaign to end SATs. Joint NUT/NAHT meetings have been held in countless schools. Many members have also held “SATs Saturdays”, activity days in local town centres, and support from the public has been overwhelming.
Thousands have signed our joint petition to end SATs and support is also growing amongst authors and celebrities. Former Children’s Laureate Michael Rosen has strongly backed the campaign and statements of support are flooding in. As author Philip Pullman says of SATs, “They should be put away at once. Children, their teachers, their schools, and society itself will all eventually feel the benefit.”
Getting your views
Later this term both the NUT and NAHT will be asking our members whether you think that SATs should be abolished and whether, if called upon, you would be prepared to take action to not administer SATs in 2010.
One of the many arguments that the NUT and NAHT have made consistently is that SATs are damaging to education because they lead to a narrowing of the curriculum and teaching to the test.
It isn’t just the NUT and NAHT who oppose this narrowing. The government’s own Expert Group on Assessment has said, “We do not support drilling or narrow test preparation.” Their report has been agreed by the Secretary of State and guidance on “what constitutes proportionate, appropriate preparation” for Key Stage 2 tests is to be sent to all schools.
We know that members do not want to take part in what the Expert Group described as “drilling or narrow test preparation”. Members who feel under pressure on this issue should contact their local secretary or regional office.
In a joint statement Christine Blower, General Secretary of the NUT and Mick Brookes, General Secretary of the NAHT, said:
“This term we will be stepping up our joint campaign to end SATs because it is the right and professionally responsible thing to do.We know that the vastmajority of teachers, school leaders, parents and pupils agree that SATs should go.”