South Yorkshire primary schools fail to hit the mark


Doncaster primary schools have failed to make the grade in pupil achievement, official figures show.

Statistics released yesterday as part of the annual school performance league tables reveal only 74 per cent of primary school pupils in the South Yorkshire town achieved the expected levels in writing, reading and maths.

The damning table shows Doncaster has one of the highest proportions of under-performing schools in the whole country – with only three local authorities ranking lower.

A spokesman for Doncaster North MP Ed Miliband branded the results ‘disappointing’ and said he would raise the issue with education chiefs.

Sheffield’s stats also came in near the bottom end of the table, with just 78 per cent of pupils achieving the expected marks.

However, it wasn’t all bad news. Amongst the best performing schools in Doncaster were Arksey Primary School, Ings Way; and Hill Top Primary School, Edlington Lane. In Sheffield, Totley Primary School, Sunnyvale Road; and Oughtibridge Primary School, Naylor Road, were at the top of the table.

Meanwhile, Rotherham and Barnsley were also close to the bottom of the class. In both areas, 79 per cent of pupils achieved a level four in key stage 2, the expected standard of achievement.

A spokesman for Barnsley Council said: “A recent report to Cabinet members, called 2015 Education Outcomes in Barnsley, showed that at Early Years Foundation Stage results have improved by seven percentage points in the area, shrinking the gap with the national average to three points.

“By the end of primary, Barnsley’s gap with national results is now just one percentage point.

“Key Stage One overall results among seven-year-olds have improved at the same rate as nationally. At Key Stage 2, 79 per cent of Barnsley pupils achieved level 4 in reading, writing and mathematics in 2015 compared with 76 per cent in 2014. Improvement rate in this key measure has been faster than nationally, closing the gap from three to one percentage point.”

Comments were unavailable from Sheffield and Rotherham Councils.

For the full league table and to see how your child’s school ranks against others locally, see Saturday’s Star.

* Janice James, headteacher of Bentley High Street Primary School, who is pictured with MP Ed Miliband in today’s Doncaster Star alongside this story, has asked us to point out that Bentley High Street School is rated as outstanding. We are happy too make this clear.