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Bradford school results are so ‘disappointing’
Bradford’s primary schools have recorded the third worst results in England in tests sat by ten and 11-year-olds earlier this year, new figures show.
A shocking one in three (32 per cent) of children are failing to achieve the standards expected of them in the Three Rs by the end of their primary education.
Councillor Ralph Berry, who is charge of education, yesterday admitted the results were “disappointing”.
Also published were the results of the Government’s new spelling, punctuation and grammar test for 11-year-olds, which was taken by pupils for the first time this year.
A total of 6,725 children sat the test in Bradford, but only 68 per cent passed, compared to a national pass rate of 74 per cent.
The results of this year’s Key Stage Two national curriculum tests – known as SATs – also show that:
* The reading standards of Bradford’s 11-year-olds was the worst in the Yorkshire and the Humber region
* Maths results were also the lowest in the region
* Science scores were joint lowest in Yorkshire and the Humber, along with Sheffield
* Bradford’s overall results have fallen.
Last year, 70 per cent of children reached the expected level four or above in reading, writing and maths, while this year the figure slipped to 68 per cent.
Coun Berry, executive member for children’s services, said: “After making recent progress at Key Stage Two in Bradford primary schools, there are disappointing elements to this year’s provisional results.”
He said the local authority would work with a schools body called the Primary Improvement Partnership to review the results and agree on the next steps.
Coun Berry said: “One of the ways in which we can help children improve their reading is through a new partnership we are developing with the National Literacy Trust which we hope will start working with schools early next year.”
He said the teaching of mathematics was another area they would focus their energy on. Councillor Roger L’Amie, Conservative spokesman for education, said: “I think ‘disappointing’ is putting it mildly. This is a very serious state of affairs.”
He said it would be wrong to blame teachers or governors, but more needed to be done to share the best practice of the top schools.
He said: “I would say there has been an improvement over the last couple of years, but SATs results are SATs results, and being third bottom ain’t where you want to be.”
Coun L’Amie also gave a call-to-arms to encourage parents to become more involved in their children’s education.
He said: “I know people are busy, but parents have to accept they need to spend a little more time talking to, reading to and listening to their children.”
Bradford was joint third with Reading. The worst in the country was Poole, followed by Luton.
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