SATs company barred from pupils' appeals

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The Independent Online

The American company being criticised for failing to deliver national curriculum test results on time has been stripped of its powers to consider appeals by pupils and schools.

Headteachers have warned that there would be record numbers of appeals against the test grades for 11- and 14-year-olds because of fears over the quality of the marking. But the National Assessment Agency (NAA), the tests watchdog, is to hear all the appeals instead of ETS Europe.

ETS Europe, which could lose its £156m contract to mark the tests for the next five years, is continuing its negotiations with the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority (QCA), the exams watchdog that controls the NAA.

John Bangs, of the National Union of Teachers, said: "It is quite clear this is a massive vote of no confidence by the QCA in ETS."