At the end of August 2017, 88% of the district’s primary schools were rated by Ofsted as good or outstanding, as were 73% of the district’s 18 secondary schools. Across England as a whole the Ofsted good/outstanding inspection performance is 90% for primary schools and 79% for secondary schools.
Ninety-nine percent of all three and four year old children are taking up some free/funded early education, as are 75% of two year olds (at March 2017) – higher than the latest published England rate, 68%.
The Foundation Stage assessment measures a child’s development and achievement at the end of their Reception year. The three prime areas assessed cover communication and language; physical development; and personal, social and emotional development. In 2016, there were only small differences between the Wakefield district and regional and national averages, and a total of 65.2% of children were determined to have achieved a good level of development.
Key Stage 2
Primary school children sitting Key Stage 2 tests in 2016 were the first to be taught and assessed under a new national curriculum. The expected standard has been raised compared to previous tests. In 2016/17, attainment levels were below the England average. Fewer boys than girls reached the expected standard in reading, writing and maths and pupils for whom English is not their first language lagged behind other pupils (across England as a whole there was almost no difference). Disadvantaged pupils were less likely to reach the expected standard than other pupils, and this gap was larger than that seen across England as a whole (see tables below).
Key Stage 2 headline performance 2016/17. Source: Department for Education
Percent of pupils reaching expected standard in reading, writing and maths by pupil characteristics, 2016/17. Source: Department for Education
Key Stage 4 (GCSE)
New Key Stage 4 attainment measures were introduced in 2015/16. The ‘Attainment 8’ score reflects good GCSE performance (A* to C) in English, maths, three other English Baccalaureate subjects, plus three other GCSEs (or approved equivalents). The ‘Progress 8’ measure reflects the progress made in these subjects between Key Stage 2 and Key Stage 4. In 2016/17, attainment levels were very similar to the England average. Within the cohort of pupils, girls did slightly better than boys and pupils whose first language is not English did slightly better than those for whom English is their first language. Pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds did markedly less well than other pupils, the difference being very similar to the picture nationally (see tables below).
Key Stage 4 headline performance 2016/17. Source: Department for Education
Average Attainment 8 score per by pupil characteristics, 2016/17. Source: Department for Education
Ofsted is the Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills. They inspect and regulate services that care for children and young people, and services providing education and skills for learners of all ages, including the district’s maintained primary and secondary schools and academies.
A key inspection benchmark is the proportion of schools judged to be good or outstanding. At the end of August 2017, the most recent inspections showed 87% of primary schools and 72% of secondary schools were either good or outstanding. Both these levels were slightly lower than the England average, but primary inspections in particular have improved markedly over the past few years (see graphs below).