Monday, May 08, 2006

SATS spat

Across the country today,thousands of 10 and 11 year old children will be sitting hunched over exam papers. And they will continue to hunch for the rest of this week - 4 English papers, 3 Maths and 2 Science.
Some will be calm, others will be nervous, many exhausted and some particularly fragile kids will be in a state of utter terror and panic.
And what for? What will anyone gain from this pointless and CRUEL exercise?
Supposedly the secondary schools these children will move to in September will have a clearer idea of the children's abilities. Bollocks - all they'll get is a picture of which kids are good at TESTS. If they really wanted to assess ability, they'd get a far better idea from coursework and reports.
And supposedly the results will be useful because they'll enable people to compare schools via the league tables. More bollocks! League tables are pointless and meaningless - no one believes them or in them.
And supposedly the SATS will prove what a caring/sharing government we have - committed to equality and choice. Aaah, now we're getting somewhere ...
The SATS are all about political stupidity and showmanship. They're certainly not about improving education. And they're most definitely not about children. Which is why you're unlikely to ever meet a teacher or parent or child who approves of them.
If only we could have a mass boycott ... but without that, you don't dare remove your child from the system because - it IS the system! So it would be detrimental to them if they didn't do what everyone else is doing ...
The result is that this government is fucking up our kids. In years to come we will see that our children have been victims of a really stupid experiment in education. And we've been forced to collude with them.
I will never forgive them for that ...

11 comments:

Sharon J said...

Oh, don't get me started on the state of British schools. I took my daughter out and had her educated at home because the school was ruining her. I'm so glad my time dealing with the LEA is over so believe me, you have my sympathy.

Debi said...

Good for you for taking matters into your own hands! I guess whatever we do, it's a compromise but at least you were proactive. I lack the patience and skills to consider home educating J&J, so that's not an option for us.
3.5 days to go ...

skint writer said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
skint writer said...

I agree that all these sats etc are a cruel nonsense but if coursework is more of a valid measurement of a child's learning, it should be supervised coursework because we all know who ends up doing the it don't we.

(edited: that'll teach me to click on publish without checking the spelling etc.)

Debi said...

You're right, Skint. I'm aware that I sometimes do more than I should (in an ideal world) when it comes to homework. And assessing by course work completed in class also puts a lot of responsibility on individual teachers who, being human, inevitably have children they actually LIKE more than others.
But almost anything has to be better than this torture ...

Minx said...

My hairy hormonal is starting his GCSE's on Friday. All through his educaton we have seen him go up and down like a rollercoaster. None of his Sats results bear any resemblence to the grades he is now expected to achieve - although I'll review that when the results are in.
SATs are for the govermnent and are as far removed from the true state of British education as you could hope to get.
If you're starting a war let me be your second in command as I've done loads of coursework and am well qualified!!!

Minx said...

PS, are you up for a link Debi - I like your words

Debi said...

Wotcher, Minx. Nice to see you.
I'm well up for waging war on this issue - and so many more! But I've never had any aspirations to lead - or to be led for that matter.
Anyone for spontaneous collaboration?

Debi said...

Oh and yes, Minx, I'd love to link. Only one problem - I need you to tell me how! (Monosyllablic non-techy language required.)
I have a list of blogs I regularly check out who I know have linked to me and I'd love to reciprocate so this could be our first piece of meaningful collaboration ...

Maxine said...

Year 6 SATS over, hooray! Nearly got the other lot (first year GCSE) out of the way. God it is a nightmare.
Like your photo, Sharon, I don't think I've seen it on your other comments. I daren't put mine on anything.
I'm with Debi on this one, I feel my children are being well educated at school -- certainly a lot better than their grumpy mother could do. (Their dad would do a better job as he has infinite patience but he is too busy being a mad professor to take the time off).
As for all the tests, I don't know what I think -- pros and cons. I have found that the older I get, the more indecisive and generally wishy washy I get about the "great" issues. And as Minx will attest, I am 150 so I am extremely dithery. When I was in the debating group at school in the sixth form at age 17 or so, all these issues seemed as clear as crystal.

Debi said...

Hi, Maxine. I know exactly what you mean. I thought that as I got older (and I'm 250 by the way) I'd be more confident about my beliefs and opinions. And on one level that's true. But at the same time, I'm aware that when I was young there was more clarity - something was either 'right' or 'wrong' whereas now I can see all the shades of grey. (And not just talking about my hair.)