The 2019 Key Stage SATs results have been published. For reading, the percentage of pupils achieving the expected standard is 73%. This is down by 2% from 2018 but over the last four years this is an increase of 7% from 2016 (where the national average was 66%). It is worth noting that the average scaled score in 2019 is 104 – this has increased from 103 in 2016.
Girls continue to outperform boys in reading and the gap has increased. Although both girls and boys have dropped in the proportion reaching the expected standard in reading between 2018 and 2019, the fall was higher for boys (down 3%to 69%) than girls (down 1% to 78%).
The percentage of children achieving the higher standard in reading has risen from 19% in 2016 to 27% in 2019 (although in 2018, 28% reached this standard).
Many schools reported that their pupils struggled to complete the reading paper this year and teachers across the country have commented on the increase in words across all three extracts in this year’s test. Stamina appears to be an issue for some schools, supported by the QLA data where items that appear later in the test are more likely to be omitted and perform less well. Although the content domain 2c) summarise across more than one paragraph, is not tested as much as the other content domains, many teachers are prioritising this skill to ensure that children are equipped with skills to understand what they have read before they are expected to retrieve (2b) or infer (2d).
Schools will continue to ensure that their pupils have a rich diet of high-quality texts (including fiction, non-fiction and poetry) across all year groups in the primary curriculum (Take a look at our new Read in to Writing series for more around high-quality texts). Progression in the choice of high-quality texts selected to teach reading will ensure that skills can be built upon from year to year so that the bobsleigh analogy – academic success is a result of the cumulative effect of good teaching throughout the whole of pupils’ time in school, not just in year 6 where all four years in KS2 are essential for good results -is embedded in every school.
Maddy Barnes is an English Advisor who works nationally and internationally.
Maddy is the author and editor for many Rising Stars books as well as many other educational books for teachers and pupils. Look out for her detailed analysis of the 2019 reading test when the 2019 implications for teaching documents are published later this year.
Find out more about our Achieve SATs Revision series.
TagsKey Stage 2