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Not to send DD to school in Easter holidays?

(122 Posts)
muminthecity Fri 10-Feb-17 17:23:26

DD is in year 6, and preparations for the SATS are well underway. DD is very bright, and expected to do well, but she is really feeling the pressure and is not particularly happy at school at the moment, mainly because her favourite subjects (art and history) have been sidelined in favour of extra SATS practice. She gets practice tests sent home every week which she does well in, as well as maths, English and grammar homework.

Today we had a letter home informing us that the school are laying on extra lessons to prepare for the SATS over the Easter holidays. They have asked if DD can attend 4 days (mon-thurs) in the first week, for 3 hours a day (1-4pm.)

On one hand, extra education is no bad thing, and it is good of the teachers to give up their time in the holidays for this. On the other hand, DD is only 11, she's under enough pressure as it is, shouldn't the school holidays be a chance for her to relax and do things she enjoys? Not to mention the awkward timing which will really limit what else we can do that week. I'd like to have days out, visit family and friends etc. Having to be back by 1pm for school would severely limit that. WWYD? AIBU not to send her?

Babyroobs Fri 10-Feb-17 17:27:41

We had this dilemma last year. In the end dd did go in for the second week of the Easter holidays but only because she really wanted to. If she hadn't wanted to go I would not have encouraged her.

pinkish Fri 10-Feb-17 17:29:01

I wouldn't send my kid to school but I would do extra practice at home.

When she gets to secondary school her target grades will be based on her sats results. What I've found is that no teachers expect my dc to exceed her target grades - they only care if she meets them.

Supermagicsmile Fri 10-Feb-17 17:29:53

I wouldn't go unless she was expected to do badly and neeeded the extra help.

flumposie Fri 10-Feb-17 17:30:42

Don't send her. I am a secondary school teacher and am used to our school having sessions for pupils in the holiday, but primary is madness. Education is all about data these days and not what's best for each child. I despair a lot over it these days.

scurryfunge Fri 10-Feb-17 17:31:50

I thought SATS were for the benefit of the school and not the child?

Heirhelp Fri 10-Feb-17 17:32:38

I would not send her. sat are a judgement on her school on her. If it was a science club or something fun then yes but exam papers at 11 no.

ElderDruid Fri 10-Feb-17 17:32:59

They generally use the results for putting children in sets at high school. If you are confident that your daughter is prepared enough, you are within your rights to say I think she'll be fine without this. Or say that you've got plans during the 'holidays' and you feel your DD needs a rest from all the pressure.

Theworldisfullofidiots Fri 10-Feb-17 17:33:03

Are the results that bad that they have to do so much extra practice. I would be concerned as personally I think primary is about a good grounding and getting them ready to flourish. That means whole child education and now just maths and English. I wish someone would do a longitudinal study on the impact! So you probably gather I wouldn't send my child in.

JennyOnAPlate Fri 10-Feb-17 17:33:13

I wouldn't send her, and won't be sending my dd if her school do the same.

AlexanderHamilton Fri 10-Feb-17 17:33:24

I would absolutely not send her.

We either go away at Easter or dd goes on a performing arts residential (this year we are combining the two) so any Easter revision sessions would be totally out of the question.

SalmonFajitas Fri 10-Feb-17 17:33:42

I wouldn't send her (unless she actually wants to go of course). It isn't like these are GCSEs which will benefit your DD they're just for the school. By putting on extra lessons and prepping kids for the test they're actually making the tests less reliable and the data is going to be completely meaningless. I do sympathise with schools as they are under enormous pressure to perform but allowing that pressure to drip down to 10 years and allowing it to detract from their actual education (i.e. learning stuff no prepping for a test) is a step too far for me.

Theworldisfullofidiots Fri 10-Feb-17 17:34:06

By the way the sets at secondary school change by half way through the second term generally

SukeyTakeItOffAgain Fri 10-Feb-17 17:34:33

This makes me really sad 😞

MollyHuaCha Fri 10-Feb-17 17:35:38

Pls don't send children to sch during the holidays. They are children and they need their break from school. But also, so do teachers. It's not fair for teachers to be obliged to work during the holidays. If parents all boycott these extra classes, the sch management will be forced to withdraw them and everyone will be happier smile

gamerwidow Fri 10-Feb-17 17:37:21

They don't use the sats to group children into sets at secondary school in my local area because they're a really poor measure of their actual ability. All they are is an inducator of how well the school has taught to the exam. I wouldn't send my Dd to school for this, they need the holidays as down time. It's ridiculous to be piling on the stress at 10 or 11 years old.

Allthebestnamesareused Fri 10-Feb-17 17:37:27

If your primary is one of very many that feeds into the secondary school they will not even use the results to set but will do their own testing to differentiate.

If she is bright and already performing well in the practice tests I would not be sending her in.

They will go full pelt at it after Easter too.

Believe me one month into secondary you will never even thinks of SATS again!

Trifleorbust Fri 10-Feb-17 17:37:28

Teacher here. Not a chance in hell would I send my child to school during the holidays for SATS revision. I know it means a lot to the school, I respect the fact that they need the children to do well (I teach GCSE and A-level so I understand the pressure) but they are 11! These tests reflect the performance of the school over her whole school life from KS1-2; they will have no impact on her other than for target setting. So absolutely not.

Trifleorbust Fri 10-Feb-17 17:38:42

And I would be complaining to the school about inappropriate pressure - I don't say that lightly! The children are far too young for this rubbish.

muminthecity Fri 10-Feb-17 17:39:37

Thank you for your thoughts. Just to add, DD definitely doesn't want to go. At the last parents evening her teacher said she is well on track for a level 6 in English and grammar and a borderline level 5/6 in maths. She is already attending an after school maths club for an hour every week to try to push her up to a level 6. Her maths has definitely improved since she started attending, and we have worked on it together at home.

I understand the point about how they are put into sets at secondary, but these sets aren't permanent are they? If she did, for example, do terribly in her maths SAT and was put in the bottom set at secondary, it wouldn't take long for her teachers to realise she was more capable and move her up would it?

Catch583 Fri 10-Feb-17 17:40:06

I think this relentless pressure is appalling. It's like it used to be for the 11+ ,which was largely abolished because of the unfair dividing of children into successes or failures for life.
If parents refuse to participate then schools can't do it.

DelphiniumBlue Fri 10-Feb-17 17:40:37

If they haven't learned sufficient maths and English in 7 years of primary school, despite all the practice tests, why do the school think that going in over the holidays will make any difference?
I agree with the other posters, this is for the school's benefit and not the childrens. And your daughter clearly needs a break.

BeachysSnowyWellieBoots Fri 10-Feb-17 17:41:35

You'd be surprised how 'sticky' the sets are once you are in them. Remember, for your dd to move up, someone normally has to move down.....

Janey50 Fri 10-Feb-17 17:42:10

Is it compulsory? If it isn't,and your DD is doing well anyway,I wouldn't worry about sending her in. How do they know that you aren't going away for the Easter holiday,or got plans for those days? I appreciate that it is good of the teachers to give upon their free time to do this,but kids do need a break from school. And I can't help thinking that ultimately,the school is more concerned about the rating in the league tables for results,rather than a concern for the kids to dco well. But I may be wrong on that score.

scurryfunge Fri 10-Feb-17 17:43:29

What do the unions say about forcing teachers to attend school through the holidays when they are probably using the holiday period for further planning,etc?

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