The 2016 Key Stage two tables published today (15 December) show that standards in most areas across Plymouth’s schools are broadly in line with the national picture.
The results show that in reading, writing and maths combined, Plymouth’s pupils attained on average, at a level that is just above that for the country as a whole.
Because of changes to the way pupils are now assessed in their last year of primary education, it is not possible to compare this year’s results with previous years.
This year the government has introduced a new national expected standard in reading, writing, maths and grammar, punctuation and spelling that all pupils should achieve. This means that the tests taken by pupils at the end of primary school have become more demanding and both teachers and pupils are getting used to the new tests.
The latest results show that reading standards for the city are slightly higher than national standards, whilst in writing and maths, they are slightly lower. Pupils made better progress in reading and maths than in writing. Disadvantaged pupils achieved less well than non –disadvantaged pupils but the gap in attainment was smaller than that for the country as a whole.
Councillor Terri Beer Cabinet Member for Children and Young People said: “I would like to congratulate all the pupils, teachers and their schools for all the hard work that has been put in over the past year.
“Our priority is to improve the attainment and progress of all pupils and especially disadvantaged pupils and the local authority is working hard with schools, Ofsted and the Department for Education to achieve this.”
David Maddison, Chief Executive Officer of Plymouth Learning Partnership said, “We would like to congratulate schools and pupils and celebrate their successes. Despite their hard work we know that some children will have found the changes to the system has effectively down-graded their efforts.
“Plymouth schools are working with colleagues across the region to ensure a coordinated response to the changes, both in the curriculum and the testing system and as a city we will be building upon work already underway to address increasing demands.”
Anthony Hutchings, the Headteacher at Glen Park Primary School and Chair of Plymouth Association of Primary Heads said: “The newly introduced Key Stage 1 and 2 tests that children undertook in 2016 reflected a significant increase in terms of level of challenge and expectations in attainment adding additional pressures upon schools.
“Plymouth schools are continuing to work closely in partnership to share best practice and support one another across the city. We welcome the recent Secretary of State announcement about primary assessment which signals a new approach by the Government to working more closely with teachers, heads and education professionals about how we move forward with the testing system.”