Yorkshire's schools making progress in primary league tables

Local level data has been published by the DfE, assessing 11-year-olds attainment in every school in England in the national curriculum tests, or SATS.
Local level data has been published by the DfE, assessing 11-year-olds attainment in every school in England in the national curriculum tests, or SATS.

Progress is being made in Yorkshire’s primary school league tables, although the region still ranks among the lowest in the country when it comes to meeting expected standards in reading, writing and maths.

Local level data has been published by the DfE, rating 11-year-olds’ attainment in every school in England in the national curriculum tests, or SATS.

But while Yorkshire’s education authorities’ performance has long ranked among the lowest in the country, analysis does show that it is continuing to improve.

There are some notable achievements, including in Bradford, which has in the past languished at the bottom of the tables but where pupils are now making significant advancements.

While there are still two per cent fewer children meeting expected standards at the end of Key Stage Two than the national average, progress is being made, particularly in maths.

“These tables are positive news for our district’s primary schools,” said Coun Imran Khan, portfolio holder for education, employment and skills.

“Our overall position for reading, writing and maths has improved and we’re closing the gap on the national average.”

The authority is now second in the region for reading progress, and third for maths and writing, said Coun Khan. Nationally, he adds, the authority is 108th - but up from 125th last year.

“We know there is more to do but it shows Bradford is moving in the right direction,” Coun Khan added.

“Credit must go to school staff, parents and pupils who work every day to deliver better outcomes for our children.”

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Analysis

Nationwide, it emerged in September, 65 per cent of pupils met the expected standard across all SATS tests, which included reading, writing and maths.

Now the new data breaks this down to single school level, making analysis possible by local area.

In Yorkshire, 63 per cent of 11-year-olds sitting national curriculum tests this year reached expected standards, a two per cent increase on last year.

This is in comparison to 65 per cent of children in England, and against a high of 71 per cent in London.

While just seven out of Yorkshire’s 15 education authorities matched the national average, this is a marked difference from 2015 when 11 of the 15 fell shy of equaling average performance.

There is a wide variance across the region, with 61 per cent of children meeting expected standard in Doncaster, 62 per cent in Leeds, and 68 per cent in York.

Despite the statistics, Doncaster has now seen three consecutive years of improvement, the education authority has stressed, and is closing the gap in maths and writing.

The borough, identified by the DfE as a social mobility opportunity area alongside Bradford, sees work underway including a partnership with Doncaster Stories to improve children’s literacy and training with schools.

“Although we know there is still a lot of work to do it is pleasing to be continuing in the right direction,” said Doncaster Council’s assistant director of learning opportunities, Leanne Hornsby.

“Improving outcomes in reading remains a key priority for us and we are working with our schools on strategies to help improve in this area.”

How did your school perform? Individual school's results can be accessed here.