Kids' Strike: 'We can't condone the action taken today', insists Association of Teachers and Lecturers policy advisor

Kids' Strike: 'We can't condone the action taken today', insists Association of Teachers and Lecturers policy advisor

Parents have pulled their children out of school today in protest at SATs tests

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Education Policy Advisor Anne Heavey has slammed the action of parents who have removed their children from school today in protest at the "unnecessary pressure" of Standard Assessment Tests (SATs).

Nationwide, mums and dads have pulled their kids out of classes to demonstrate against the standardised tests for primary-age pupils, which they claim is creating "mental health issues". Some families have said the government is setting their children up to fail so it can push through its plans for the education system. 

The tests, meant for children in year two, were made slightly tougher by Education Secretary Nicky Morgan, and now examine whether they know the difference between an adverb, an adjective, a verb and a noun. A petition calling for SATs to be scrapped has gathered more than 43,000 signatures online. 

While she condemned the government's handling of the issue, Heavey, from the Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL), couldn't justify the strike.

"The implementation of this couldn't have been more chaotic and inept," she told Julia Hartley-Brewer. "The government changed again what a pass on this test means on Saturday (April 30).

"Parents are worried, but we've never had them strike before. We can't condone the action taken today."

Heavey also claimed standards of education were moving away from what was originally planned. 

"What we've seen in the White Paper is the suggestion we can actually lower the bar for qualifications," she added. "The government is moving away from this positive position."