Southampton schools vow to improve after failing to hit Sats targets

Hampshire Chronicle: Southampton schools vow to improve after failing to hit Sats targets Southampton schools vow to improve after failing to hit Sats targets

THREE Southampton schools have vowed to improve after failing to reach Government targets in tests for 11-year-olds.

Fewer than 60 per cent of pupils at Hightown Primary, St Mark’s Primary and Heathfield Junior met the required standards in maths, reading and writing SATs.

It came as the city as a whole celebrated a huge leap up the primary league tables following its best ever Key Stage Two results.

Schools were told that 60 per cent of youngsters had to reach “level four” in the three tests.

Only 41 per cent did so at Hightown, 52 per cent at St Mark’s and 56 per cent at Heathfield.

However the schools did ensure targets were met in the number of youngsters who made the required levels of progress during their time at the school – another of the Government’s key markers.

Hightown Primary head teacher Sallyanne Stanton said: “Although the joint reading, writing and maths result in particular was disappointing for the school, it in no way reflects the considerable amount of progress made across the year of both individuals and groups of pupils across all areas of learning, despite the extremely low levels on entry to Year 6.

“Measured against predictions, the school’s outcomes were in line and above in all areas. Improved teaching in Year 6, validated as good and outstanding, led to vastly improved learning attitudes and pupils being able to discuss their learning, understanding their targets and wanting to achieve.”

She added that 22 youngsters took the tests which meant individually their scores had a bigger impact on the school’s overall figures.

St Mark’s head teacher Anne Steele-Arnett said there was much to celebrate in the achievement of her pupils, who reflect the diverse nature of the community it serves in Shirley.

While she said she did not wish to “hide behind” the challenges faced by the school where ten different languages are spoken and which has a high turnover of pupils, Mrs Steele-Arnett said these were factors that could not be reflected in headline figures.

She added: “I am very proud of the hard work put in by both staff and pupils and we did have much to celebrate in terms of how we improved on last year’s results and seeing the individual progress made by our pupils who, in some cases, come into the school at level one or lower.”

St Mark’s which was also hit by flooding due to a lead theft which put several classrooms out of action, was rated as good by Ofsted in 2012.

No one was available for comment at Heathfield Junior, which is currently in special measures after a critical Ofsted report.

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