Commenting on the publication of the comparative study, commissioned by the DfE, on baseline assessments used by primary schools and the announcement that they will not now be used for measuring pupil progress in subsequent years, Chris Keates, General Secretary of the NASUWT, the largest teachers' union in the UK, said:
“This is a significant development, as the use of baseline assessment was a core element of the DfE's proposed reforms to the school accountability regime in the primary sector.
“The Government has been forced to recognise that the three tests schools were permitted to use do not produce comparable results and, therefore, cannot be used to form valid and reliable baselines of progress.
“It is another example of the DfE failing to listen to teachers and school leaders in the development of policy.
“The NASUWT made clear from the outset that using different assessments to establish a common baseline was an approach that would always create problems in terms of the comparability of the outcomes produced by these different systems.
“The research commissioned by the DfE confirms that the NASUWT's warnings were justified.
“It is time for the Government to live up to its promises to listen to the profession and develop a model of assessment in the primary sector that takes full account of the expertise and experience of qualified teachers, rather than the whims and prejudices of ministers.”
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