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schools reluctant to drop national curriculum levels?

24 March 2014

Recently the Government announced the abolishment of national curriculum levels. The unpopular levels had been criticised for being described vaguely, administered subjectively and, the classic accusation against modern teaching, encouraging the passing of tests rather than good old fashioned teaching. So far, only one in six primary schools have decided to stop using the abolished levels.

Education professionals are conscious of their accountability and schools need to be able to demonstrate objectively their pupils’ achievement. In the absence of any alternative, the levels do help them do this. It has been suggested that schools should create their own assessment methods and whilst they are capable of doing so, perhaps this is something best left to the Government to ensure consistency on a national basis.

National curriculum levels were not perfect, and maybe the time is right for an overhaul. But until a fit for purpose replacement is provided, it’s no surprise to see people sticking to what they know.

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