KS3 league tables to be scrapped

The government has scrapped next year's key stage 3 league tables, The TES can reveal

The decision means that school-by-school information on the performance of 14-year-olds in this summer's Sats will never be published.

The move was revealed by Ed Balls, the Schools Secretary, in a House of Commons debate that followed an independent inquiry by Lord Sutherland into the administrative chaos that surrounded this year's exams.

David Chaytor, Labour MP for Bury North, asked Mr Balls: "Is there any point in publishing the key stage 3 results on a school-by-school basis? Should we not simply now put key stage 3 to bed and forget about it?"

Mr Balls replied: "I do not think that it makes sense to put schools through the process of checking individual results school-by-school, and so it is not my intention to do so." A Department for Children, Schools and Families spokesman confirmed that school-by-school KS3 data, due to be released in March, would not now be published.

Mr Balls abolished the KS3 tests in 2009 but until this week there was still the intention to publish league tables of the 2008 results. The decision will raise fresh questions about the reliability of this year's results.

Mr Balls also revealed that there has been a more than four-fold rise in the number of pupils' marks being queried by schools this year.

But Ofqual, the regulator, said this week that it had no evidence that marking quality was worse this year.

The Sutherland inquiry's report has led to the scrapping of the National Assessment Agency and the suspension of two of education's most senior officials.

Mr Chaytor told The TES: "I am sure that most schools will be delighted that they will now be able to say goodbye to these tests once and for all."

Sutherland report, pages 6-7.

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