Only one school in Fenland joins boycott by teachers' union of this week's SATS tests

PUBLISHED: 15:36 12 May 2010 | UPDATED: 09:38 02 June 2010

Story by: MAGGIE GIBSON PUPILS at Thomas Eaton Primary School in Wimblington are the only ones in Fenland not taking their SATs this week. This was not an instant decision and everything will carry on as normal with full teacher assessments being made an

Story by: MAGGIE GIBSON

PUPILS at Thomas Eaton Primary School in Wimblington are the only ones in Fenland not taking their SATs this week.

"This was not an instant decision and everything will carry on as normal with full teacher assessments being made and of which parents will be made aware," said the chairman of the governors, Lester Young.

The school is one of just nine in Cambridgeshire to boycott the tests. It follows a vote by heads and deputies from two big teaching unions leaving them free to take the action or not.

Cambridgeshire County Council says while there is a legal duty for schools to carry out the testing it will not be taking action against those which refuse.

About 600,000 10 and 11 year olds are taking the tests in maths, science and English with results being used to make up the primary school league tables.

The industrial action is being taken by the National Association of Head Teachers and heads and deputies in the National Union of Teachers. They say it encourages teaching to test and leads to other subjects being squeezed out.

Thomas Eaton head teacher Pam Jones refused to comment on her decision but the chairman of governors said he was satisfied the education and welfare of the children remained a top priority and would not be compromised.

Mr Young said: "The governors have been in consultation with the head since November over this and have discussed it at a couple of meetings.

"We very much follow the guidelines that every child matters and we were quite comfortable and happy with the decision.

"I think there is a lot of pressure on children which doesn't need to be put on them at this age. We think this is a very good school and we are very happy with it. We don't have a problem with what is happening."

Mr Young, who is in his third year as chairman of the governors, said youngsters from Thomas Eaton were always well received when they transferred to secondary school and were recognised as having a good level of education.

He said he had not received any comments from parents on the boycott decision.


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