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More 11-year-olds meeting Government targets in three key tests

Some 61% of 11-year-olds met Government targets in all three areas, compared with 53% last year.

The number of primary school pupils reaching the expected standard in reading, writing and maths has risen, official figures show.

Across England, 61% of 11-year-olds who sat this year’s Sats – or national curriculum tests – met Government targets in all three areas compared with 53% last year, according to the Department for Education (DfE).

While the number of schools considered to be under-performing has dropped, almost 140,000 children are being taught at mainstream primaries in England which are falling below the Government’s floor standard.

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(PA Graphics)

Children attending schools in London are the most likely to receive a good education, while those in the South West and Midlands are least likely, the figures show.

School Standards Minister Nick Gibb said the results showed teachers and pupils have “responded well to the new more rigorous curriculum”.

According to Press Association analysis of the data, around 137,838 pupils are being taught at the 511 primaries that failed to meet the floor standard this year. This represents around 3.2% of all children at mainstream primary schools in England.

Last year, after major changes were made to assessments, 180,743 pupils (4.1% of all children at mainstream primaries) were attending 665 schools which failed to reach the threshold.

Schools are considered to be under-performing if fewer than 65% of pupils reach the expected standard in reading, writing and maths, or if they fail to make sufficient progress in the three key areas.

A breakdown of the figures also shows wide variation in performance across the country.

While just 1% of schools in London fell below the floor standard, in the South West and the Midlands that figure rose to 5%.

Children eligible for free school meals are also less likely to succeed, with 43% achieving expected standards compared with 64% of all other pupils.

The figures show 47 local authorities – representing almost a third of those in England – had no under-performing primary schools, with London home to 24 alone.

Mr Gibb said: “Teachers and pupils have responded well to the new more rigorous curriculum introduced by this Government and these pupils were the first to benefit from the new approach to phonics.”

He added: “There are now 1.9 million more children in good or outstanding schools than in 2010, with nine out of 10 primary schools given this rating at their last inspection – and our recent rise up the Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (Pirls) rankings puts the success of our reforms and the hard work of teachers on a global scale.

“This means that pupils are now leaving primary school better prepared for the rigours of secondary school and for future success in their education.”

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