Teachers assess more generously than Sats at KS1

Study also finds that pupil age is only weakly correlated with key stage 1 Sats test results

Catherine Lough

early years desk

Key stage 1 teachers are more likely to assess pupils as having reached the expected standard for their age than their actual Sats test scores, new research found.  

In a study of 2,250 schools participating in the FFT’s key stage 1 Early Results Service for results this year, 76 per cent of pupils were assessed as having met the expected standards in reading, while 70 per cent were measured as having achieved this by their Sats tests.

"More pupils reached the expected standard by teacher assessment than they did in the test," the report by FFT Education Datalab says.

Related: Infant school KS1 assessments more generous than primaries'

News: Sats: What are the KS1 threshold scores?

Insight: Will KS1 Sats really be scrapped in 2023?

"Just like last year, fewer pupils reached the expected standard of the test (a scaled score of 100 or more) than were judged to have reached the expected standard by teacher assessment."

"In order for the test to yield similar percentages achieving the expected standard, the required scaled score would have to drop to 97 in reading and 98 in maths."

In maths, 77 per cent of pupils were assessed as meeting expected standards by their teachers compared to 71 per cent of pupils reaching this standard in the tests.

The percentage of pupils meeting the expected standard in reading, writing and maths as judged by teacher assessment rose slightly since last year by 0.2 per cent yet the proportion achieving greater depth in all three subjects fell by a similar percentage.

The report for 2019 also found that age was only weakly correlated with key stage 1 results. 

September-born pupils outperformed August-born pupils by an average 4 scaled score points. But the correlation between age and key stage 1 attainment was found to be less than 0.2, with many pupils born later in the year outperforming their September-born peers.


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author bio

Catherine Lough

Catherine Lough is a reporter at Tes.

Find me on Twitter @CathImogenLough

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