The Yorkshire Evening Post reports that a Leeds headteacher was so upset by her 10 and 11-year-old pupils being in “floods of tears” during SATS exams she decided not to run them at her school this year, despite the move putting her job under threat.
Jill Wood, from Little London Primary, said she was willing to take a stand against the controversial national curriculum tests for the sake of the children’s emotional well-being.
After consulting with parents and governors, the decision was taken not to participate in this month’s exams, instead opting to measure children’s progress using alternative methods, including learning checks throughout the year, as well as assessments at the beginning of July.
She said: “The country is spending billions on children’s mental health, so why are we putting them under pressure?”
“I’m in breach of my contract of employment, but I feel very passionately about it.” While she stressed she was not against assessments, she argued that the standardised SATS made no sense when schools had free reign over how they measured performance during the rest of the year.
“Schools should be accountable, but there is a better way.” Her comments come the week after hundreds of parents backed Leeds headteacher Jo Fiddes, who labelled the controversial tests as “cruel” and an “unnecessary pressure”.
Do you agree with Jill Wood or do you think that she’s being irresponsible? Please tell us your thoughts in comments or via Twitter ~ Tamsin
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