Tests too old-fashioned says top-ranking head

ENGLISH tests used to measure the literacy skills of 11-year-olds are too old-fashioned and should be updated to become more relevant to the 21st century, according to the head teacher of the Yorkshire school that achieved the best marks in the region.

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St Wilfrid's Catholic Primary, in Sheffield, had the highest average score in Yorkshire in this summer's Standard Assessment Tests in English and maths and the third highest marks in the country.

The school's average pupil score was 32.4, meaning almost every child was reaching a standard beyond what is expected from their age group.

Head teacher Barbara Jarrett said she was not interested in league table rankings but was pleased that pupils' success had given them a sense of achievement and a chance to do well in secondary school.

She also warned that the English tests which 11-year-olds sit at the end of primary school are out of date.

Mrs Jarrett said: "They are too old-fashioned. In the written test there is no opportunity for pupils to use technology.

"It should include information computer technology – we have to think about what we are preparing young people for."

She added: "The important thing is not the league tables but each child being able to reach their potential and going on to secondary school having achieved the best that they can and with something they can build on."