The first results for this year’s controversial Sats tests show that 53 per cent of children reached the expected standard in reading, writing and mathematics.
The Department for Education results reveal how much tougher the tests are this year. Last year, 80 per cent of pupils achieved what was then the expected level 4 in all of reading, writing and mathematics. The government has decided to release national-level figures earlier than usual to help headteachers compare their school’s performance with others.
The statistics, out today, show that:
- 66 per cent of pupils achieved the expected standard in reading
- 74 per cent of pupils achieved the expected standard in writing, which is teacher assessed
- 70 per cent of pupils achieved the expected standard in mathematics
- 72 per cent of pupils achieved the expected standard in spelling, punctuation and grammar (Spag)
The number of schools below the floor standards – which can trigger academisation – will not be known until the progress measures are published later this year. But education secretary Nicky Morgan has said that any rise in the number of schools below the floor standards would be limited to 1 percentage point, meaning a maximum of 6 per cent of schools would be affected.
More than 550,000 10 and 11 year olds took the tests in May. Previously, headteachers had been able to benchmark their results with previous years, but this is the first year of the new tests and it is therefore not possible to compare results.
The government said when it introduced the new tests that the new expected standard would be similar to a level 4b under the previous system of levels. But there has been concern from teachers, who have said that the new tests were much tougher than that – with a standard closer to the previous level 5.
In 2015, 80 per cent of pupils were at level 4b or above in reading and 49 per cent at level 5. In mathematics, 77 per cent were at level 4b or above and 42 per cent at level 5. Seventy-three per cent reached level 4b in Spag and 56 per cent were at level 5.
In writing, 87 per cent of pupils achieved level 4 and 36 per cent achieved the higher level 5. Writing results are assessed by teachers and there was no information for numbers attaining level 4b.
This year, pupils have had their raw marks converted to a scaled score, for which a scaled score of 100 means they have met the expected level.
The statistics also show that the average scaled score in reading and mathematics was 103. In spelling, grammar and punctuation, it was 104.