Press release: Record number of pupils in ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ schools

Education Secretary Nicky Morgan today (1 December 2015) thanked teachers for driving forward the government’s vital educational reforms after figures published by Ofsted showed a record 1.4 million more pupils are now getting the best possible start in ‘good’ and ‘outstanding’ schools compared to 2010.

The overall proportion of schools rated ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ has risen by 16 percentage points since 2010, with 84% of schools now achieving top Ofsted ratings.

Figures released today to coincide with the publication of the Ofsted annual report show an increase of 18 percentage points in the proportion of good and outstanding primaries compared to 2010. There are also nearly 320,000 more pupils in ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ secondary schools.

Nicky Morgan emphasised the need to recognise this progress in order to determine how these successes can be embedded and spread across the country, as the government continues to deliver on its commitment to social justice and give every child the best education possible.

Education Secretary Nicky Morgan said:

The landscape of English education has been transformed over the past 5 years through raising both standards and expectations. Thanks to the hard work of teachers across the country and our ambitious programme of reforms, there are now 1.4 million more pupils being taught in ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ schools compared to 2010.

This progress should not be ignored, but we believe more needs to be done to deliver educational excellence everywhere and tackle pockets of underperformance, so that we can extend opportunity to every single child.

In November, Education Secretary Nicky Morgan announced the next phase of the government’s education reform programme with a package designed to tackle entrenched underperformance. This includes:

  • the launch of a new National Teaching Service to send some of our best teachers to underperforming schools in struggling areas, starting with a pilot in the North West, with a view to placing 1,500 outstanding teachers and middle leaders in schools across the country by 2020
  • new plans to ensure all pupils leave primary with a good grasp of reading and maths
  • secondary pupils from every background to study core academic subjects through the EBacc
  • details of 5 academy sponsors that will be tasked with driving up standards in schools across the north of England – where historically performance has been poor. Five sponsors have all been awarded grants totalling nearly £5 million, to make an impact on improving performance for pupils in some of the most challenging and disadvantaged areas of the county.

Thanks to the education reforms of the past 5 years, significant progress has been made in raising standards in England’s schools. This includes:

  • increasing the number of academies by more than 5,000 since 2010
  • the number of pupils not reaching the expected level in the 3Rs at the end of primary falling from 1 in 3 in 2010 to 1 in 5 this year following a focus on getting the basics right
  • increasing the number of pupils studying the core academic subjects which make up the EBacc – which has risen from 22% in 2010 to 39% in 2015
  • removing poor quality qualifications from performance tables so pupils are leaving school with those most valued by employers and universities
  • reforming GCSEs and A Levels to deliver new, gold-standard qualifications that will equip young people with the knowledge and skills to succeed in the modern world

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