It’s the last day of term today and a day of analysis. The Key Stage 2 test results for Primary Schools are printed and I’ve found myself pouring anxiously over the fine details regarding my children’s school in a way that’s horribly competitive.
It’s daft really because I know that they are at a good school and one that’s well regarded locally.
All three are doing well in their years and are likely to get above average results when they take the tests themselves. But it’s the psyche that’s been set up. The schools are ranked and ours isn’t in the top ten when it has been in previous years.
Now, I know in my sensible head, that that this doesn’t reflect on the children or the school particularly. Most pupils passed level 4, the required standard at this age group, and quite a lot, passed level 5. If I analyse the special needs figures then our school has more children that fit this category than others. Although such a mix hasn’t affected how well my children learn in the classroom when it comes to SATS results, it makes a difference to the figures.
The school with the best academic results in the country had just 6 pupils in its Year 6 group and they all achieved level 5, the above average rating. City schools in Bristol range from 60 – 120 pupils per year. It is quite a different proposition to get them all achieving at level 5.
When SATS were first proposed I thought it a good idea as I assumed that it would enable parents, as well as teachers, to have a clear indication of the standard of their school. To a certain extent it does, and reveals schools that give parents cause for concern where pupils aren’t reaching the required standard for their age. But surely there is more to education that this.
I know I shouldn’t be feeling disappointed that our school is lower down the list than last year. However, if they’d been in the top five I doubt I’d be writing this.