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Tim Farron

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Farron calls for fewer tests for children following SATS boycott by South Lakeland schools

May 11, 2010 12:00 AM

South Lakeland MP Tim Farron has called for SATS to be scaled back in favour of more teacher assessment following the news that hundreds of children in South Lakeland will miss their National Tests after nine head teachers in Lake District primary schools declared their intention to boycott the exams.

A statement issued jointly by the heads of Ambleside CE Primary schools, Coniston CE primary School, Grasmere CE Primary School, Goody Dale Community Primary School, Langdale CE Primary School, St Cuthbert's Catholic Primary School, Windermere St Mary's CE Nursery and Infant School, Staveley CE Primary School and Windermere Junior School confirmed that the tests on May 10th will be boycotted following a vote by the National Association of Head Teachers and the National Union of teachers.

Commenting Mr Farron said:

"The schools' decision raises important questions about whether we really want children to spend so much time in the last year of primary school taking and re-taking tests which give such unreliable results.

"Children would benefit much more if we scaled back these National Tests and instead relied more on teachers' own assessments of their pupils .

"It's important that children's progress is monitored, but it's also important that children learn and develop without being confined to excessive, narrow testing at an early age"