Primary schools in Hastings and St Leonards have reason to celebrate this Christmas, with the highest ever number of pupils achieving the expected standard in new tests that are based on a more challenging curriculum.
Hastings scored above the national average in the tests, which measure achievement at age 11 in reading, writing and maths, placing it in the top half of the country.
Twelve primary schools were in line with, or above national average, for the percentage of pupils achieving the expected standard in two or more of the subjects.
Nine primary schools had above or average progress scores in all three subjects, and 15 of 17 schools showed an improvement in the percentage of pupils reaching the expected standard in reading, writing and maths.
Notable results included those at St Leonards C of E Primary Academy, which saw a huge improvement with 68 per cent of pupils achieving the expected standard in reading, writing and maths.
In 2017, 29 per cent of pupils at the same school achieved the expected standard, although the results are not directly comparable due to changes in the way they are measured.
At Ark Castledown, 73 per cent achieved the expected standard this year. The predecessor, Castledown Primary School, achieved 27 per cent last year.
A huge 85 per cent of pupils at Ark Blacklands Primary Academy reached the expected standard, while 80 per cent of pupils achieved the expected standard at Sandown Primary School and St Paul’s CofE academy.
Richard Meddings, chairman of the Hastings Opportunity Area, said: “This record result is a momentous achievement for Hastings’ primary school children, and one which should be celebrated.
“We are looking forward to working with primary schools next year to build on this success, and continue the trajectory of improvement.”
This year has also seen Hastings schools receive praise from Ofsted. Seven schools – All Saints Junior, Helenswood, Hastings Academy, Saxon Mount, Ore Village, Silverdale and Sacred Heart – were all judged as ‘good’ by the regulatory body, with one school, Torfield, judged as ‘outstanding’.
Richard Preece, executive principal at Saxon Mount and Torfield, said: “We are delighted that Ofsted has recognised the excellent work of staff, governors, parents and carers and children across many Hastings schools, including Saxon Mount and Torfield.”