12th June 2000




School pupils in the UK are subjected to too much testing, according to a leading education academic.


“We test too much, and the purposes and targets of that testing are inadequate,”

Professor Trevor Kerry told a meeting of the left-wing think-tank the Young Fabians on Saturday (10th June 2000).


Prof Kerry, visiting professor at the International Educational Leadership Centre, University of Lincoln, was invited to address the group following his inaugural lecture as professor in Lincoln last month.


Speaking to the Young Fabians’ conference at the University of Leeds, Prof Kerry pointed to the rapid development in styles of learning in the face of information and communications technology and suggested that traditional school buildings with their set lesson times and rigid structure may soon be a thing of the past.


He suggested three broad principles to future policy-makers:


·     that all learning, in school or out of it and whatever the age of the learner, has to be learner-centred in order to be successful

·     that the organisational mechanisms through which people learn (schools, teaching methods and groups such as streamed classes) are subject to change according to circumstance

·     that as a result of current government policy, we test too much; and that the purposes and targets of that testing are inadequate.


“These are principles with which most teachers would agree, and it is crucial that governments listen to the voice of the professionals,” Prof Kerry said.


The theme of the Young Fabians’ conference was ‘Education in the 21st Century - Delivering on Lifelong Learning’.


For more information contact: Jez Ashberry, Press and Media Relations Manager

University of Lincolnshire & Humberside (tel: 01522 886042)