Schools campaign to end ‘immoral’ Sats pressure

Primary head Jon Le Fevre wants school leaders to sign a charter which commits to not putting too much pressure on children to pass Sats, especially in Year 6. Tes reports

He says 50 schools and organisations have already expressed an interest, with the campaign yet to officially launch.

“Headteachers are in this job for the right reasons but people have expressed their feeling that the accountability system is making schools act in a way that prioritises the Sats outcomes and maybe not in the best interests of the children,” Mr Le Fevre, head at Pilgrims Cross CE Primary School in Andover told Tes.

His campaign comes as the NAHT heads’ union commission on accountability warns that the current system of Ofsted, league tables and targets is doing more harm than good.

“Schools are significantly narrowing the curriculum in Year 6 from Christmas or before; they are putting on revision classes in the holidays, running booster classes, sending home full Sats papers as homework.”

Mr Le Fevre is now looking for schools who want to change this culture. 

He is part of a new group called Assessment for Children, which is looking to produce a charter for schools to sign up to.

He has been in talks with the NEU, NAHT and More than a Score campaign group and says many schools are interested.

Nick Brook, the NAHT’s deputy general secretary and chair of the Accountability Commission, said: “We really welcome what Jon has been doing. It embodies the findings of the commission and it is exactly what we want to see – school leaders taking responsibility to ensure they make the right decisions in the interests of the pupils and communities they serve, rather than being driven by the pressures of the accountability system.”

Read more about the proposed charter and it’s series of commitments Schools campaign to end ‘immoral’ Sats pressure

Will your school sign up? Please tell us your thoughts in comments or via Twitter ~ Tamsin

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