The numbnut scribes at the DfE whose job is to explain away the professional and/or public rejection of that Department’s equally numbnut ‘educational’ implementations have failed yet again to grasp the argument [but then they wouldn’t would they – drafters simply compose deflections: they are not a part of the policy-making*].
The May 3rd parental boycott of SATs with the provision of alternative ‘outdoor learning events’ [read more here] is such a positive action and argument against the nonsense of these tests, that action growing in response to the widespread criticism of the tests by people in the know [teachers and educationalists] as well as a sensitised response to this government’s general ineptitude when it comes to educational matters.
As ever, the DfE drafters’ dodges and deflections have an uncanny paradoxical knack whereby in seeking to defend against criticism they actually exemplify the very problem, this latest on the proposed boycott using that one word which sums up a key error in government thinking about teaching and learning: to manage it –
A Department for Education spokesperson said: “We are clear that tests should not be a cause of stress for pupils – they help us ensure schools are performing well, and we know the best schools manage them successfully.”
You cannot, in fact, successfully manage a flawed testing regime. The teachers at school now and for past decades deal with and make the best they can of bad and even dangerous policies, but this isn’t really the kind of ‘management’ being implied by the statement. Indeed, the parental boycott is the type of necessary response which stops that institutional, professional altruism that puts student welfare above what should be immediate protest and resistance. Teachers have coped by rasping the barbs from government decision-making for too long.
* [not that the policy-makers themselves have a clue….].