Tuesday, 14 August 2007

KS3 SATs Results

There is quite a debate going on at Primary Teacher UK about KS3 SATs results.

There has been a lot of focus in the news about the KS2 finally hitting the SATs targets that were set for 2002. Well the BBC today writes about the KS3 results.

The proportion of 14-year-olds in England reaching the required standard in maths tests fell slightly this year. 76% reached Level 5 or above, against 77% in 2006 after a three-point rise over the previous year.

There was an increase of one percentage point in the proportions of pupils meeting English and science standards, to 74% and 73%. But the government had set a target of 85% reaching Level 5 in English and in mathematics by this year.

Within the English results, there was a six percentage point increase in the share of boys meeting the required standards for reading but a drop of two percentage points in writing.

Some 65% of boys met the standards for reading compared to 78% of girls, while 80% of girls met the standards for writing compared with 67% of boys. Boys' writing was highlighted as a particular concern when the primary school results for 11-year-olds were published last week. In English overall, 80% of girls made the grade compared with 67% of boys.

In fact girls out-performed boys in each of the core subjects. Some 76% of girls and 75% of boys met the mathematics standard, and 73% of girls and 72% of boys meeting science standard.

In information and communication technology (ICT) 74% of pupils met or exceeded Level 5.

Whilst the news about the KS3 results sounds like a mixed bag, what amazes me about the whole report is the statement, "the government had set a target of 85% reaching Level 5 in English and in mathematics by this year." If targets are being set at 85% to be Level 4 in English and Maths in Year 6, why is it that pupils are only expected to improve by 1 level in the next three years? Something just isn't right here. Year 2: Level 2, Year 6: Level 4 and Year 9: Level 5? The average rate of progress should be to improve by 2/3 of a level each year. In my book this means that the target at Year 9 ought to be at least Level 6.

Can anyone shed any light on this issue?

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