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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-01320: Tavish Scott (Shetland Islands)

Scottish Liberal Democrats

Date lodged: 7 July 2016

To ask the Scottish Government whether it will reconsider plans for national testing in light of reports that 53% of pupils in England reached the expected standard.

Answered by: Shirley-Anne Somerville 21 July 2016

The Scottish Government is not introducing a national testing regime or ‘high stakes’ tests. National standardised assessments are being put in place to support improvement, not to create more statistics. Children will not be expected to revise or prepare for the new national standardised assessments, other than by undertaking routine classroom learning activities. Teachers will decide the appropriate time within the school year for individual children to sit the assessments.

Like all other assessment activities used in schools, the national standardised assessments for Scotland will be designed to create an understanding of how children are progressing. They will provide information for teachers on where children are doing well, and where further support might be required. That information will be used by teachers to plan future learning; to help parents understand their child’s progress, and how best to support them to progress further; and to improve outcomes for individual children. Alongside a range of other evidence, the information will also provide consistent and robust information to help to inform teachers’ professional judgement of a child’s progress towards curriculum for excellence levels in literacy and numeracy.