Poorer pupils’ results ‘vary greatly’ at primary schools with similar intakes

More than twice as many disadvantaged children achieve good maths results in some schools compared with others, according to an Education Endowment Foundation analysis

Research has revealed a large gap in the performance of primary schools with similar intakes, with more than twice as many disadvantaged 11-year-olds achieving good maths results in some schools than in others.

Analysis by the Education Endowment Foundation shows that 90 per cent of pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds achieved a level 4B or higher in maths at some schools. But for others schools with a similar intake, the proportion was just 40 per cent.

Achieving a level 4B means a pupil is deemed to be on track to score a good GCSE pass.

The analysis is from Families of Schools, a database published by the EEF today, which groups primary schools into “families” that are statistically similar. The EEF published a version of the database for secondary schools in 2014.

Schools in the same “family” can be in different areas of the country but have similar proportions of pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds, similar proportions of pupils speaking English as an additional language and similar levels of average prior attainment.

‘Expertise must be shared’

The EEF hopes schools will use the new database to learn from other similar schools.

Sir Kevan Collins, chief executive of the EEF, said: “Many primary schools are spending their pupil-premium funding in ways that are transforming outcomes for disadvantaged pupils. But many are not and the attainment gap at a national level remains persistently wide.

“If all schools are to produce great results for all their pupils, it’s vital that we learn from the successes of the best-performing schools and enable this to be shared in a supportive and constructive way with those who need more help.

“For the first time, our Families of Schools database provides primary schools with a structure to do just that.”

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