Primary school results improve again

Provisional figures show Liverpool has made improvements in primary school standards over the last two years and is continuing to narrow the gap with the national average.

Interim test and teacher assessment figures for 2018 released by the Department of Education  show that at Key Stage 2, the percentage of Year 6 children in the city meeting the required standard in reading has gone up from 69% to 72% (75%), while one in four pupils locally now get the highest grade. The city has closed the gap with the national average by one percent.

In writing, the percentage of children meeting the required standard has improved from 71 to 74 (78), and those performing best have gone up from 11% to 18%. The city has closed the gap with the national average by one percent, however this set of figures are not directly comparable to last year because of changes to the framework.

Last year’s improvement in maths has been maintained and remains at 73% (76%), and there has been an increase in those getting the highest score, which now stands at 22%. The city has closed the gap with the national average by one percent.

The overall figure for reading, writing and maths combined is up three percentage points from 58% to 61%, compared to 64% nationally, but is not directly comparable with last year because of the changes in the writing framework. Those getting the highest score is up from 4% to 9%.

At Key Stage 1, the percentage of Year 2 children meeting the required standard in reading is up from 67 to 70, in writing it has rocketed from 57% to 65% and in maths the improvement has been from 67% to 72%.

There has also been an improvement in the number of early years children who have reached a ‘good level of development’ – it is now up to 66 percent against 62% last year and compared with 71% nationally. It means Liverpool has halved the gap with the national average since 2016.

Councillor Barbara Murray, cabinet member for education, said: “First and foremost, congratulations has to go to children, teachers and parents on these results which are the result of a tremendous amount of hard work.

“We all have a shared ambition to make sure all of our children get the best possible start to their education, and I think the latest results reflect our determination to get their school life off to a flying start.

“However we are absolutely not complacent, and recognise that there is still more work to do in supporting our young people to achieve their potential.”

One school that has had huge success over the last year is St Cecilia’s Infants in Tuebrook which has increased the percentage of children reaching the required standard for reading, writing and maths at Key Stage 1 from 47% to 62% over the last year, meaning it is now just three percent short of the national average.

In early years, School Improvement Liverpool has been working closely with schools and nurseries to drive up the number of children reaching a good level of development. This has included targeting 23 schools with intensive support; help with improving literacy and bringing early years teachers from different schools together to showcase best practice.

Work has also taken place with nurseries to make sure children start school ready to learn phonics.

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About Author: Alan Birkett