They are designed to chart the progress a child makes during their early years but new assessments for four and five year-olds are causing controversy.
About half of our region's primary schools are due to take part in a pilot scheme - which will be rolled out to all schools next year. The government says this is the best way of holding schools to account. But critics believe they are a waste of time.
Derek Johnson has been to a school which believes children will benefit from the new approach.
Interviewees: Claire Harnden, Trust Deputy Chief Executive Officer; Nancy Stewart, More Than A Score campaign group; and Nick Gibb MP, Schools Minister.