Stephen Twigg MP, Labour’s Shadow Education Secretary, responding to the Government’s announcement on primary school assessment and accountability, said:
“Labour wants a clear system to measure the progress pupils make throughout primary school and drive up standards. But the Government's approach looks confused. Last week they got rid of the curriculum levels which measured pupil progress. How will they determine how well children are doing between age 5 and age 11 without national expectations of learning outcomes?
“The proposed measure to rank eleven year olds lacks year-on-year consistency, as children will be benchmarked against their peers, not against set standards. How will this ensure standards remain high over time? We need a thought through plan from the Government.
“Pupils need to leave primary school ready to take on a broad and rigorous secondary curriculum. Of course, attainment in English and maths is crucial but being prepared for secondary learning is more than that. It's about having the confidence, skills and broader experiences that allow children to thrive in a new environment. Encouraging teachers to narrow their focus and teach to the test is not the way to raise standards or to set children up for their next step.”