Headteachers’ toolkit

Pupils and schools deserve better than the current standardised testing regime.

As heads are at the frontline of administering SATs and other tests, you know the burden they place on teachers and pupils, and that they are a wholly inefficient way to judge a school’s performance.

As the government moves to introduce baseline assessment for reception pupils, and times tables checks for Year 4, the pressure on schools is only going to increase.

The time has come to have a substantial, informed debate about the assessment system. This toolkit contains ideas and resources to help make your voice heard.

Talk to your peers

If you would like to get in touch with other heads who share your concerns about standardised testing, please let us know and we can connect you with like-minded peers.
Contact us at: campaign@morethanascore.org.uk

The NAHT currently has a position supporting the introduction of baseline assessment. If you disagree with this, please contact your NAHT representative to make your views clear.

If you’re interested in learning more about alternatives to the current system, you can download our book, Beyond the Exam Factory, via the link below.

Visit our social media sites facebook.com/morethanascore and twitter.com/morethanscore to share updates and news with colleagues and peers.

Share your story

We are always looking for stories from heads about their experiences with SATs and other standardised assessments. We are particularly interested in hearing from you if you would like to share your views about the introduction of baseline assessment.

If you would like to write a blog for the More Than A Score website, or be interviewed or filmed, please get in touch.

Talk to your Board of Governors

Governors may not be fully up-to-speed with the current assessment regime and plans for the future. If you would like to raise the subject at a meeting, our book, Beyond the Exam Factory, is a good starting-point and can be downloaded below. Or you could send them a link to this website.

Talk to parents and pupils

Getting in touch with your pupils’ parents to show that their child is More Than A Score is a reassuring and supportive way to counter any pressure or anxiety they are experiencing because of assessment.

It will allow you to tell them that test scores don’t paint the whole picture of their child. You can use our template letter below as a starting point.

You could also write a shorter version of this letter in your school newsletter or communication to parents.

If you would like some further inspiration, you can read about the letters sent by the heads of Barrowford School or Silverdale Primary School

Write to your MP

We want the government and opposition parties to pay attention to how we feel about the current testing system. The views of heads are vital in this debate and writing to your MP will make your voice heard.

There is a template letter below. When you’re writing, please do let them know about the effect of standardised testing on your pupils, and on teachers’ morale.

You can send your letter using writetothem.com or find your MP’s address on www.parliament.uk

Withdrawing from SATs

Taking the decision to withdraw your school from SATs requires a significant commitment from teachers, governors and parents. If you are considering making this move, we can provide support and resources from other heads and our own panel of experts.

The film below, The School That Said No to SATs, provides an insight into the process.

Please contact us if you would like to discuss this in more detail campaign@morethanascore.org.uk

Headteachers’ toolkit downloads



Template letter to parents


Template letter to MP


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Beyond the Exam Factory

Campaign film


The school that said no to SATs

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