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SATs and my daughter's school

(14 Posts)
pinkrocker Tue 04-Apr-17 00:40:13

I'm a 3rd trainee teacher, so I know and understand why Y6 SATs is a massive priority at the moment.

My problem is, my wonderful, sensitive, quiet and polite daughter is now being taught maths four times a day, with different teachers, to help her achieve a good grade. All the interventions are well-intended, and I can see why her school are doing it, but maths for 4 out of 5 lessons a day?

She's missing out on art (her favourite subject) PE, all the Humanities, just to have these booster sessions.

She has been so upset tonight, shaking and crying, so angry and resentful (unlike her!) and saying that the teachers keep saying "persevere" and I just think enough is enough. She's been told to come in at break and lunch times to complete interventions as well. It's too much.

Would you politely say to the Year Head "that's enough now, no more interventions, if she passes that's great and she will do her best but no more pressure and no more sessions?"

I know it's Easter hols next week, but I can see the pressure starting up straight away afterwards.

My poor lass. sad

Clonakilty Tue 04-Apr-17 00:56:40

This is ridiculous! Stop it now. I would just say that she wasn't going. I wouldn't worry about being polite - I'd just be firm. She needs a balance and she isn't getting it. I'd remind them that if she became ill with this stress she would be too unwell to come in for the week of exams anyway.

SafeToCross Tue 04-Apr-17 01:00:47

Awful. Remind the school that mental health is more important that a marginal gain in your daughters score.

PerspicaciaTick Tue 04-Apr-17 01:14:36

Dear School,

If you do not immediately stop pressurising my DD regarding her SATS, I will teach her to leave her entire paper blank on the day and pick her nose instead. Which will do wonders for your stats.

Thank you.

pinkrocker Tue 04-Apr-17 01:21:57

Thank you all .

pinkrocker Tue 04-Apr-17 19:08:11

Well I emailed the school and wrote a letter, they have withdrawn her from the extra sessions. Very pleased, so is she.
I have to go and see the Head tomorrow.

shouldwestayorshouldwego Tue 04-Apr-17 19:16:20

On the one hand it is not worth her getting too stressed (one of mine gets very stressed so I have that t-shirt), on the other hand this will probably be her last chance before secondary to really grasp these concepts because after the May half term they do nothing enrichment activities. See if they can highlight specific areas which she still needs to work on and try to gently work on it over the next few months.

MrsHandles Wed 05-Apr-17 19:40:00

Firstly, well done for managing to get your DD removed from intervention sessions! Secondly, what happened in the meeting with the head?

My head teacher tried to pressure me into teaching 'Easter School' over the holidays last year. I point blank refused. After the holidays I asked how many children turned up - one. One child out of 60 turned up for Easter School. I was incredibly smug grin

pinkrocker Wed 05-Apr-17 23:18:35

Thanks, MrsHandles.
The head was very nice.
She understood, after I'd explained how DD was feeling and reacting to all the maths that's she's been having.
She did say that she could be removed from all the interventions, but the rest of her year group would all be doing other things, so she'd have to go in a Y5 or Y7 class.
She further claimed that "all primary schools are purely teaching English & Maths for the 2 weeks before SATs" which I disagreed with, and she couldn't confirm (if DD failed to reach the required score) if she'd have to re-sit in Y7.
She said that High schools use data from Y6 to stream the children into sets, but as that's 2.5 years away, I'm sure the HSchool would use some kind of baseline assessment to see where they are at before they stream them and not use old data!!
I also suggested that perhaps DD could be taught more creatively, to use maths in a less full-on context rather than mindless drilling, we shall see.....

MrsHandles Thu 06-Apr-17 08:21:39

So, so pleased for you! Our Y6 have been doing English, maths and SPaG since January. It's relentless and so depressing. Thank goodness for PPA when they get a break! I no longer teach in Y6 smile.

Hope your DD is much happier from now on

SuperRainbows Thu 06-Apr-17 08:42:52

This thread makes me so sad.

I used to teach in primary school during the 90s. I left to home ed my four kids and have never gone back.

The pressure schools put on kids is relentless and inappropriate. It's dreadful that so much emphasis is put on maths and English at the expense of everything else. I can't imagine how awful doing maths all day for a 10 year old is.

IMHO, way too much is expected of primary schools and this pressure is passed on to children.

Primary school should be a place where learning is enjoyed, not endured. Basic maths and English should be pillars of the curriculum, but developing creativity, confidence and mental health coping strategies should be right up there as priorities.

Secondary schools would then welcome confident, secure students who would be ready to be pushed academically.

Badhairday1001 Thu 06-Apr-17 08:53:43

Don't worry she won't have to resit, there are no resits for sats. Her results will be used by secondary school to calculate her predicted grades at GCSE but they should just be a guideline and no school should keep a child in one set based on sats results. Sets in secondary are pretty fluid and children still move around right up to year 11. Secondary will do there own assessment in the first few weeks, schools I've worked at have used CAT4 tests along with their chosen maths and English assessments. Don't worry you are doing the right thing, she will be fine.

PerspicaciaTick Sun 09-Apr-17 13:07:07

The HT may have been lovely - but I don't believe a word she said either.

leccybill Mon 10-Apr-17 23:37:08

Mixed ability teaching in secondary is increasingly more common now due to budget cuts.
Eg. a half year group of 125 used to be Set 1 = 30, Set 2= 30, Set 3= 25, Set 4= 25, Set 5 = 15.
More commonly I'm seeing 4 mixed ability sets of 32-34 students, reducing the need for as many teachers per dept.

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