Head invites pupils to ‘chill out’ before tests
PARENTS PRAISE SCHOOL LETTER
A SCHOOL has been praised for its heartwarming letter to pupils ahead of the SATs tests taking place this week.
The stress felt by children doing the exams in Year 2 and Year 6 has been widely reported and there’s ongoing criticism of the decision to test kids at such a young age.
That’s why parents were so pleased with a letter given to their children at Chorlton Park Primary School encouraging them to ‘chill out’ ahead of the tests.
The letter from Key Stage 2 headteacher Meryl Blackburn praised the pupils for working so hard so far.
In it, she says: “This weekend I want you to relax and ‘chill out’ – do something nice, enjoy time with your family, read a book, go to the cinema, eat some nice food, play out with friends, play a game, visit somewhere that you haven’t been to before! Remember to eat well and get plenty of sleep, to laugh a lot and enjoy the weekend.”
Parent Susan Alman shared the letter on Facebook with the comment: “How lovely is this ... Good luck to all year 6’s doing SATs this week.”
And she told the M.E.N. she was pleased such ‘a very positive letter’ had been sent to pupils.
Susan said: “The preparation, hours of extra study time both in school and at home leading up to SATs can be really stressful for some children and their parents.
“After noticing how stressed our little one was feeling, I said ‘how about just doing the extra classes in school and when you come home you relax and spend time with your friends doing fun things?.’
“I have found that this plan has worked really well. No pressure at home, just free time to enjoy being a child playing out having friends over – all things a child enjoys and has a right to. I also found that because I’d taken the pressure off my daughter she sometimes chose not to go out and play but to stay in and study, but that was her own choice, which I felt was more healthier and less stressful as she was in charge of her own learning.
“Yes as a parent I’m hoping she does well in her SATs but whatever she achieves she’s a success in my eyes.”
It’s not the first time schools have sent encouraging letters out ahead of the controversial tests.
Last year, the M.E.N. reported how one was sent to pupils in the final year at Boothstown Methodist Primary School in Salford, urging them to spend the weekend bike-riding, eating ice cream, seeing friends and generally relaxing.
It told the children that Year 6 teacher Helen Kelly ‘is in charge of worrying – you don’t need to.’
And Mrs Kelly went on to set homework for the weekend, with the list including everything from ‘go on a bike ride’ or ‘go for a swim or walk,’ to ‘spend time with people you love’ and ‘smile.’
Mrs Blackburn’s letter and, below, Chorlton Park Primary School
Key stage 2 headteacher Meryl Blackburn