My baby boy's world is now full of stress. The stress takes up so much space he has no room for anything else. He is eleven. I didn't even know what the word "stress" meant when I was that age. Today, the only question that he has asked me is "What's a noun? I'm not good at grammar. I'm worried about it." This is what SATs do to children. They don't gain anything from them, but they lose so very much.
While the greater freedom schools have been given in the UK has not always been welcomed by teachers, assessment certainly seems to be an area which has blossomed as a result. It may be worth taking another look at the McKinsey report and questioning whether, however painful initially, increased autonomy for schools may end up providing a better education for the next generation.
In the midst of all this easy-to-use technology, somehow we lost touch with the fact that someone has to build it all. And the kids have become consumers, sitting slack-jawed and motionless above the wrists for hours, killing baddies but never knowing the thrill of summoning the code-driven genies themselves.
None of this would have been possible without the commitment and dedication of more than 300 volunteers and partners who have gone the extra mile to support people who need it the most, but there's still lots more be done. As this New Year gets underway and recovery and reconstruction continue, we must not lose sight of Nepal's most vulnerable children - girls and children with disabilities - who desperately need an education to escape the cycle of poverty.