UK & World News
Reception Children Face Compulsory Tests
Four-year-old children will have to sit tests when they start primary school under new Government plans.
The compulsory tests, designed to measure each child's level of development at the start of their formal schooling, will come into force by 2016 under the new proposals.
It comes after a Department for Education (DfE) consultation last year which proposed a "baseline assessment" in primary schools in order to measure how children have progressed by age 11.
The tests are to be carefully crafted to estimate a child's academic abilities in very basic literacy, reasoning and cognition, rather than testing their knowledge as in a traditional exam.
As a result, it is believed the current key stage one tests that take place at the end of year two, when most pupils are aged seven, will be scrapped.
The Government is soon expected to shortly announce the results of the consultation and reveal the new reception class test, which was first reported in The Times newspaper.
A DfE spokesperson said: "We have consulted on our proposed primary school assessment and accountability measures and we are considering our response."
Some educational campaigners fear the tests for the younger age group will place children under undue stress.
Deborah Lawson, general secretary of Voice The Union - a union representing education professionals, told Sky News: "I want to know what is the purpose? Why should we be putting children at a younger and younger age through a testing regime.
"I think also we have to remember that developmentally is this the right thing for young children?"
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