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Academy status for weak schools 'best for pupils'

The best action for primary schools that are "not stepping up to the mark" is for them to be taken over by academy sponsors, according to the Department for Education.

Schools with a long history of under-performance, and who are not stepping up to the mark, will be taken over by an academy sponsor.

The expertise and strong leadership provided by sponsors is the best way to turn around weak schools and give pupils there the best chance of a first-class education.

– Department for Education spokesman

Despite DfE findings that 767 schools are failing to meet the Government's new tougher targets, the data suggested that overall primary schools are improving.

Last year 834 primaries would have fallen below the new standards.


English primary schools 'failing in three Rs'

More than 700 primary schools in England fall below the Government's new tougher standards in reading, writing and arithmetic, Department for Education figures suggest.

Hundreds of English primary schools are failing to meet targets in reading, writing and arithmetic, official figures suggest. Credit: PA

For the first time, schools are judged on the number of children achieving at least a Level 4 - the standard expected of the age group - in reading, writing and maths.

They must ensure that at least 60% of pupils reach this level in all three subjects and meet national averages in pupil progress.

In previous years, they were rated on reading and writing combined to form an overall English result and maths, as well as progress.

The 767 schools that fail to meet the target are considered under-performing and face being taken over and turned into academies.

Primary school teacher gives birth in classroom

A primary school teacher got her baby son's education off to an early start - by giving birth to him in a classroom.

Diane Krish-Veeramany, 30, went into labour a week before she was due while working at Manford Primary School, in Chigwell, Essex.

Three colleagues acted as improvised midwives to help deliver her second child, Jonah, after she came out of a morning meeting.

Feeling the first pangs of labour, Mrs Krish-Veeramany called for her husband, Vijaye Veeramany, to come and pick her up.

We now joke that he was late for his first day at school as he was born after the bell.

The school have named the room he was born in after him - it's now called Jonah's Room.

– Diane Krish-Veeramany

Twenty minutes later she had delivered the baby with the help of teaching assistants Dita Gojnovci, Chris Sword and Sam Mustafa.

Youngsters 'need to know how to avoid' internet porn

There is no place for explicit materials in the classroom or school, even in the course of teaching about their dangers, but many young people are exposed to such materials on the internet and phones.

In the face of this young people need to know how to cope with and avoid these distorted views of relationships.

– Russell Hobby, general secretary of the National Association of Head Teachers

Union chief: Primary school results 'excellent news'

Russell Hobby congratulated English primary schools on improved performance. Credit: PA

Russell Hobby, general secretary of the National Association of Head Teachers (NAHT), said the results were "excellent news".

"It shows the hard work that's going on in the system and has been going on for some years."

He said the majority of primaries will not be academies, which shows that schools can improve "no matter what their status".


Table reveals England's top scoring primary school

This year's top-ranking school, for the second year running, was Newton Farm Nursery, Infant and Junior in Harrow.

It gained the highest average points score at 34.1.

  • 1. Newton Farm Nursery, Infant and Junior School, Harrow: 34.1
  • 2. Grinling Gibbons Primary School, London: 33.9
  • 3. Bishop Gilpin CofE Primary School, London: 33.1

Pupils sitting the National Curriculum tests are given a set number of points for the level they achieve.

Level 2 or below is worth 15 points, Level 3 is worth 21 points, Level 4 is worth 27 points, Level 5 is worth 33 points, Level 6 is worth 39 points.

Each pupil's points for English and maths are added up and divided by the number of tests taken to give a school's average points score.

Schools with less than 30 pupils are not included.

DfE: Schools have responded to challenge

A Department of Education spokesman said that the aim of their floor target was to boost standards and "end years of chronic under-performance."

Today's figures demonstrate that schools have responded to the challenge.

The floor standards we introduced were tougher and have improved performance.

Heads, teachers and pupils deserve credit for meeting the challenge head on.

New tables reveal performance of 15,000 primary schools

The latest league tables show how more than 15,000 primary schools performed in national curriculum tests - known as SATs - in English (reading and writing) and maths.

Under the Government's current target, schools are considered failing if fewer than 60% of 11-year-olds reach the expected standard - Level 4 - in English and maths SATs tests, and fewer youngsters make two levels of progress in these subjects than the national average.

The national average for English progress this year is 92%, and for maths it is 90%.

Schools that fail to reach this threshold are at risk of being closed and turned into academies.

The latest figures show that of the 521 schools which are below the bar, 45 have already closed, with 37 becoming academies.

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