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Pupils: Literacy

Department for Education written question – answered on 9th January 2020.

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Photo of Stephen Morgan Stephen Morgan Shadow Minister for Local Government (Communities)

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what the literacy rate is amongst people aged eight to 15 in (a) Portsmouth and (b) the UK.

Photo of Nick Gibb Nick Gibb Minister of State (Education)

The Department for Education assesses pupils in England via end of Key Stage 1 assessments when pupils are typically age 7, end of Key Stage 2 assessments when pupils are typically age 11, and end of Key Stage 4 (GCSE) exams when pupils are typically age 16.

The Department publishes attainment, in headline measures for state-funded schools, at the end of Key Stage 2 by local authority, region and all of England. An extract from the latest figures for 2018-19 are in the table below, relating to attainment in reading and writing. At Key Stage 2 English reading is assessed via tests and writing via teacher assessments.

Table 1 - Key Stage 2 English results in 2019 for Portsmouth local authority and state funded schools in England

Students meeting English reading expected standard

Students meeting English reading higher standard

Students meeting English writing expected standard

Students meeting English writing greater depth

Portsmouth

67%

22%

76%

11%

England (state-funded schools)

74%

27%

79%

20%

Key Stage 2 local authority data, including for previous years[1], is available at the following link[2]:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/statistics-key-stage-2.

For students at the end of Key Stage 4, there is no assessment of literacy skills, nor reading and writing separately. As a proxy, Table 2 provides the percentage of students entering the English element of the English Baccalaureate (EBacc), and the percentage attaining a standard pass (grade 9-4).

Table 2 - EBacc English results in 2019 for Portsmouth local authority and state funded schools in England

% of students entering EBacc English[3]

% of students achieving a grade 4 or above in EBacc English

Portsmouth

93.4%

67.5%

England (state-funded schools)

95.8%

75.6%

Local authority data, including for previous years, is available at the following link[4]:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/statistics-gcses-key-stage-4.

[1] Due to change in methodology and headline measures at Key Stage 2, figures are only comparable between 2009-10 to 2014-15 and 2015-16 to 2016-17. Changes made within the 2017-18 writing teaching assistant frameworks mean that judgements in 2018 are not directly comparable to those made using the previous interim frameworks in 2016 and 2017.

[2] For each year, select the ‘revised’ publication and then open the ‘Local authority and regional tables’. For 2015-16 to 2016-17 the headline measures are the percentage of students reaching the expected standard and can be found in tables L1, L2 and L3. For 2009-10 to 2014-15 the headline measures are the percentage achieving L4 or above and can be found in tables 12-16 (2013-14 to 2014-15); tables 12-15 (2012-13); tables 13-15 (2011-12); table 11 (2010-11); table 18 (2009-10 – in the ‘national and local authority tables’).

[3] Pupils must achieve at least a grade 4 in English at the end of Key Stage 4 or are required to resit in post-16 education. Therefore, entry and achievement at grade 4 in EBacc English has been used as a proxy for 'literacy' for pupils at the end of Key Stage 4. For more information about EBacc, go to: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/progress-8-school-performance-measure.

[4] For each year, select the ‘revised’ publication and then open the ‘local authority tables’.

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