27 August 2009
Teacher and mother Sarah Breame offers some educational insights.
School reports can be very ‘data rich’ with numbers for ‘stages’ and ‘levels’. I hope to enlighten you as to what it all means.
Understanding educational language
• Key Stage 1 – Reception, Year 1 & Year 2. This covers infant school, ages 4 to 7.
• Key Stage 2 – Year 3, Year 4, Year 5 & Year 6. This covers junior school, ages 7 to 11.
• Key Stage 3 – Year 7, Year 8 & Year 9. The first three years of secondary school, ages 12 to 14.
• Key Stage 4 – Year 10 & Year 11 (gaining GCSE’s). Ages 15 and 16.
• Key Stage 5 – Year 12 & Year 13 (gaining GCE ‘A’ levels or similar qualifications). Children up to 18.
Feedback you should expect
At key stages 1, 2 and 3 you should be informed of your child’s national curriculum levels in a number of subjects. This rating ranges from 1 to 7 (reaching 8 in mathematics).
Most schools divide each level into 3 parts, eg 5c means low level 5, 5b means middle level 5 and 5a means high level 5.
What do the numbers mean?
Generally, a child making good progress should increase by about two levels per key stage. eg a child at the end of Year 2 with level 2b in maths will have made good progress by the end of Year 6 if they obtain level 4b or higher.
By the end of key stage 1 most children will have reached level 2, and by the end of key stage 2 most will be at level 4. By the end of key stage 3 most will be at level 5 or higher.
1. Read the report carefully with your child – praise any good points.
2. Compare the recent report to the previous one. There should be some improvement (even just going from 3b to 3a).
3. Talk to your child’s teacher about any concerns you have.
Pass it on – know what to expect
Find detailed information about education by age and stage, at direct.gov.uk