1. ITV Report

Weak primary schools in Lancashire to become academies

Dr Liz Sidwell Photo: PA

Weak primary schools in Lancashire are to become academies, it will be announced today.

The Government's Schools Commissioner, Dr Liz Sidwell, is visiting high-performing Hambleton Primary Academy in Poulton-Le-Fylde. Dr Sidwell will warn that poor standards of primary education in Lancashire will no longer be tolerated.

As it stands, test results for 11-year-olds and Ofsted judgements of 36 primaries in the Lancashire remain stubbornly low, resulting in thousands of pupils receiving an unacceptable standard of education, year on year.

Of these 36 primary schools, 32 are below the Government's "floor standard" for results in Key Stage 2 tests. This means Lancashire has:

· the highest number of underperforming primary schools in the North West; and that

· around a third of pupils leaving primary school below the standard expected in the '3Rs' - reading, writing and maths.

Lancashire's 32 underperforming schools are in the following constituencies:

· Hyndburn - 5

· West Lancashire - 4

· Burnley - 4

· Chorley - 2

· Lancaster and Fleetwood - 2

· Pendle - 5

· Preston - 4

· Morecambe and Lunesdale - 3

· Rossendale and Darwen - 3

· South Ribble - 2

· Fylde - 1

· Wyre and Preston North - 1

"All local people want the very best for local schools. But sometimes change is necessary to really bring about the type of improvement needed to give every child the best chance in life. When schools have been struggling for years, we simply cannot stand by and allow things to continue as they are.

– Dr Liz Sidwell, Schools Commissioner