As part of major reforms to ‘raise the bar’ in primary schools in England, children will be ranked in English and maths according to national performance. Critics describe the plans as ‘disappointing and destructive’.
Under the plans to overhaul primary targets, pupils’ Sats results would be divided into ability bands of 10%, and parents and schools would be able to see where their children were placed on a national scale, the BBC reports.
Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg said he wants parents to see how their children are doing compared to their peers and to make sure that pupils are ready when they start secondary school: “I make no apology for having high ambitions for our pupils. But for children to achieve their potential we need to raise the bar – in terms of tests, pass marks and minimum standards. I am confident that primary schools and their pupils will meet that challenge.”
Other changes may include:
- ‘more stretching’ targets for schools and an instant inspection by Ofsted, unless 85% of pupils hit a new pass mark, up from the current 60%
- new ‘baseline’ assessments of five year-olds rather than seven at the moment
- the pupil premium will rise from £900 to £1,300 a year to help more of the poorest youngsters.
NAHT leader Russell Hobby warned that the changes are built on ‘foundations of sand’ and NUT’s Christine Blower rejected the idea that primary schools should be measured in terms of pupils being ‘secondary ready’: “Education, from the earliest years, is not a conveyor belt to the end of secondary school,” she said.