Further analysis

The figures below supplement the paper ‘The impact of lockdown on children’s education: a nationwide analysis', published by RS Assessment from Hodder Education and available online at: https://www.risingstars-uk.com/rs-assessment/whitepapers

This paper analyses aggregate, anonymised results from Summer Papers from PIRA, PUMA and GAPS, sat by primary pupils at mainstream state schools in England during September to early October 2020, and compares these with the results obtained from the previous cohort in summer 2019.

Throughout this page we refer to the Summer Papers from Paper 1 to Paper 5. These test papers are designed to be taken at the end of each year in the summer term, for year groups Year 1 to Year 5. In summer 2019 the papers were taken by the correct year group, whereas in September and October 2020 the pupils had moved up a year group, meaning, for example, those sitting Paper 2 in 2020 were actually just starting Year 3, and those sitting Paper 5 were in Year 6. For this reason, results for Paper 6 are not shown because most of those pupils have progressed to secondary school.

 

School coverage

The figure below provides a graphical representation of over- and under-representation of various school groups among the schools that used the Summer 2019 and 2020 tests.

The dark grey dot at the top-right represents all schools. School types falling above the diagonal line are over-represented while those below it are correspondingly under-represented. The various coloured dots group schools by Ofsted rating, in-school deprivation, local deprivation, region, distance from the coast, size, academy status, degree of urbanisation and religious affiliation.

Overall, large schools and academies are relatively over-represented. In contrast, Ofsted 'Good' or 'Outstanding' schools and those with low deprivation are slightly under-represented. Among the regions, the West Midlands is the most over-represented and the North West is the most under-represented.

Click on the legend below to turn individual school groups on or off. Hover over the dots to see corresponding data (pupil numbers are for all schools).

 

Change in attainment by school deprivation level

Schools with low levels of deprivation (defined as those in which less than 20% of pupils are eligible for free school meals) tended to show smaller declines in attainment than those with high levels of deprivation (more than 35% of pupils eligible for free school meals).

In GPS, this effect is evident in all year groups, from Paper 1 to Paper 5, taken by Year 2 to Year 6 in 2020, though absolute declines in attainment tend to be smaller for older year groups. The same is broadly true for Reading, while for Maths the peak decline is seen in Paper 2, taken by Year 3 pupils in 2020.

Use the menu below to switch between subjects; hover over the graph to see data values.

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Sample sizes: Each data point is represented by 900-25,000 tests.
Sources: RS Assessment from Hodder Education; SchoolDash analysis.
 

Change in attainment by level of urbanisation

Perhaps related to the effects of deprivation seen above, urban schools tend to show larger declines in attainment than suburban and rural schools. This applies across GPS, Reading and Maths, as well as across different year groups, from Paper 1 to Paper 5 taken by Year 2 to 6 in 2020.

Use the menu below to switch between subjects; hover over the graph to see data values.

Show: 
Sample sizes: Each data point is represented by 300-18,800 tests.
Sources: RS Assessment from Hodder Education; SchoolDash analysis.
 

Change in attainment by school Ofsted rating

Differences by Ofsted rating are less clear-cut. For Reading, Paper 1 (taken by Year 2 pupils in 2020) at schools with lower ratings tended to fare worse, but at the same schools Paper 5 (taken by Year 6 pupils in 2020) showed smaller reductions in attainment. A similar pattern can be seen for Maths (compare Paper 1 and Paper 5, taken by Years 2 and 6 respectively) and GPS (where the effect is clearest when comparing Paper 2 with Paper 5, taken by Years 3 and 6 respectively). This may indicate that younger pupils are more affected by home environment (low Ofsted ratings tend to be associated with higher levels of deprivation), while for older ones school effectiveness is a bigger driver (so enforced absence from a good school will have a greater effects than missing lessons from an underperforming one).

Use the menu below to switch between subjects; hover over the graph to see data values.

Show: 
Sample sizes: Each data point is represented by 1,000-30,000 tests.
Sources: RS Assessment from Hodder Education; SchoolDash analysis.