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From The Socialist newspaper, 24 May 2003

Education: New Labour's triple crisis

SATS - Clarke tries to head off boycott

EDUCATION SECRETARY Charles Clarke has announced that more weight will be given to teachers' assessments when testing seven-year-olds. National targets for test results for 11-year-olds will also be postponed for two years, with schools allowed to set their own targets.

However, Clarke insists that the government will stick to its principles of testing, targets and league tables.

Linda Taaffe, a leading member of the campaign to boycott SATS - the school tests, which every pupil at present sits at ages seven, eleven and fourteen - told the socialist:

"This is an attempt to head off the campaign for a boycott of SATS, which is proving so popular amongst teachers. But it's not fundamentally changing the system. It's not taking away the tests. As long as the number scores remain, there will be numbers to be crunched in the system. They will still be used for league tables and Ofsted, the government's education inspectorate.

"This is just a very small step in the right direction and we'll be keeping up our campaign for a boycott."

Teachers, support assistants, parents, school students and anyone else interested in this campaign is invited to a meeting on 28 June, 11am-3.30pm. At South Camden School, Charrington Street, London WC1 (10 minutes from Euston and Kings Cross.) Information from http://satsmustgo.tripod.com

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In The Socialist 24 May 2003:

Striking Back At Poverty Pay

Amicus, The Political Fund And New Labour

NATFHE conference: Defend Education Fight New Labour's Attacks

Capitalism Means War And Terror

Education: New Labour's triple crisis

Fees - Tories try to woo students

Nursery Nurses scent victory in pay battle

Coventry Labour Prefers Deals With The Tories

Iraq: The Chaos Of Imperialist Occupation

Raffarin government attacks pensions France's Workers Take To The Streets


 

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