Let Our Kids Be Kids was launched in 2016 by a parents who’ve had enough… enough of endless testing, enough of teachers not being trusted to teach, enough of an Ofsted driven, dull, dry curriculum aimed solely at passing National Curriculum Tests (SATs).
We aren’t the only ones. We found lots of other people were also very concerned.
On 3rd May 2016 we used our Parent Power and took our kids out of school as part of a Kid’s Strike in protest for a day before the exams took place – over 8000 parents took part in the hope that this would encourage schools to boycott SAT tests for Year 2 and Year 6 pupils and make the government listen to their concerns.
Following the protest in 2016 a number of things happened:
- A primary assessment review recommended NO RESITS OF SATS in YEAR 7
- A parliamentary review recommended the SCRAPPING of YEAR 2 SATS
- An Education Select Committee investigation into SAT testing recommended the end to high stakes testing.
- The DfE clamped down draconian style on ‘unauthorised absensce… decreasing parental power to ‘strike’ in such away again
- Unions threaten repeatedly to strike over excessive pressure caused by high stakes tests
- A Coalition of teachers, unions, child development experts, educational psychologists and parent groups was formed – arguing strongly that children are More than a Score
- Banardo’s research shows that school is the main cause of stress in children in UK
- Teacher recruitment crisis continues – many teachers citing the pressure they face to deliver an inappropriate curriculum as their cause of their wanting to leave the profession.
5 year olds are set to face a ‘baseline assessment’ within weeks of starting school
6 yr olds continue to face a ridiculous phonics screening test
7 yr olds continue to face KS 1 SATs which are widely recognised as being developmentally inappropriate
8 year olds will soon have a rigorous maths test to face at the end of year 4
9, 10 and 11 year olds will continue to have the last two years of primary remain dominated by a farcical curriculum centred around fronted adverbials and practice papers. Here’s some example questions – in case you thought we were just exaggerating!
Child development experts are being ignored, parents concerns are dismissed and the mental health crisis amongst our young children continues!
We aren’t against tests per se – teachers need a way to measure the progress of their children. The problem with the tests above are that they are HIGH STAKES tests for schools who are rated, judged and labelled by the DfE according to the achievements of our children. Teacher’s pay may also be linked to the results their classes get! The pressure coming from the DfE, to our LEAs, then to our heads and our teachers reaches it’s end point with our young children… they feel that pressure regardless of how good the teacher is at shielding it from them!
Here’s an example of just one parent who has been in touch to say things have gone too far… sadly this is not an isolated event!
Petitions have been signed, letters have been written but no one is listening… this government seems determined to destroy our children’s childhoods and turn education into another privatised commodity.
In protest some parents are Boycotting SATS in 2018
We’ve informed our school our youngest two won’t be sitting them. Some schools appear to be more understanding than others. There’s a legal obligation for schools to issue the tests, but it’s my understanding that there’s no legal obligation for a child to sit them.
There is no legal reason a child should sit them and assuming their overall attendance is above 95% even if they are marked down unauthorised absence it won’t mean a damn thing. I don’t want the tests reviewed. I want them scrapped. Trust teachers to do the job they’re trained and paid to do.
I pulled my son out. It meant he wasn’t crippled with stress, anxiety and gastric migraines throughout the whole of Y6.
My husband and I have told our son’s school that he is not to take part in his year 2 SATs as we morally object. His class teacher and head teacher were very sympathetic.
Children are now a treated as a commodity to make money for the trust and investers, schools are run like a business , my grandson when ask what ,has done at school says all we are doing is tests . No wonder children are getting stressed. also teachers are putting their stress on to the children because they have to get good results . It’s all down to money at the expense of our children.
As a y2 teacher, I cried today at stress of pressure I am putting on them as result of pressure government are putting on us. It’s disgraceful!!”
All this pressure on children and we question why we have such high rate of young people having to access the Mental health service .
We don’t need SATS and academies we need to give teachers the freedom to teach in a way that doesn’t cause stress and anxiety and allows them to flourish and achieve the best they are able. Children aren’t machines and it’s about time we stopped treating them like they are.
I teach and, along with my co-workers, I find the current system utterly depressing. The government couldn’t care less what teachers think, just look at how they are treating the doctors. We really need parents to get behind their children and teachers… It doesn’t have to be like this and it shouldn’t be like this. Thank you to all those who are getting involved and fighting for children to have a childhood.
From a teacher to all of the parents out there….you have my full support!