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One in eight pupils in South Lakeland marked at 'wrong level' for SATs

November 24, 2009 12:00 AM

SATs exams have "failed a generation of pupils" according to local MP Tim Farron who was commenting after it was revealed that at least one in eight pupils in South Lakeland may have been given the wrong test level in their primary school science SATs.

A reliability study conducted by the regulator Ofqual compared the results of actual science tests with test development papers using the same questions and found that 83%-88% were probably given the correct level. Another study suggested 84% for English tests.

Ministers have now scrapped the "Sats" - national curriculum tests - in science. But they still require all pupils aged 10 and 11 to sit English and maths tests at the end of Key Stage 2 - the latter part of primary school.

Commenting Mr Farron said:

"This report is further evidence, if any was needed; about how unreliable SAT exams have been and why schools had every right not to have any confidence in them.

"The regime of testing and targets is based more on the need to evaluate schools rather than the personal needs of pupils. SATs have failed a generation of pupils by making them jump through academic hoops rather than actually teaching them in breadth.

"SATS place unnecessary pressure on schools, children and parents without actually adding any educational value. They should be scrapped so that pupils can be free to learn and teachers can be free to teach.