Special Report – Scottish Parliament 19/09/2018
Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity
Justice and the Law Officers
Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party Debate – Primary 1 Tests
Liz Smith – Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
That the Parliament believes that good-quality pupil assessment is an essential component of the drive to raise educational standards in Scotland’s schools, but notes the level of concern that has been raised by teachers and other education professionals regarding the introduction and delivery of new testing arrangements for Primary 1 (P1) pupils; considers that this concern questions whether the new P1 tests are in line with the play-based learning philosophy of early years provision in the curriculum for excellence, and, in light of this concern, calls on the Scottish Government to halt the tests in P1 and to reconsider the evidence and the whole approach to evaluating the progress of P1 pupils.
John Swinney – SNP
As an amendment to motion S5M-13945 in the name of Liz Smith (Primary 1 Tests), leave out from “considers” to end and insert “recognises that assessments are a key tool to inform teachers’ professional judgment of the needs of the children and young people that they are teaching; agrees that the assessments are delivered as part of everyday learning and provide consistent evidence for teachers to identify the next steps in a child’s education; further agrees that this is especially valuable in P1 if closing the attainment gap is to continue; recognises that the assessments are not high stakes, there is no pass or fail, and that they should never cause stress to young children, and welcomes the changes and improvements already made following the first year of operation to ensure a better experience for younger pupils and provide extra reassurance to teachers and parents.”
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