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Summary of the secondary school and college performance data

Data graphs 389x267

For our reaction to the performance data release, read our press release here.  

Today (25 January 2018), the Department for Education (DfE) has released updated school-level data on the school performance tables website, which can be accessed here.  

The performance tables now include:

  • 2017 secondary (revised) and 16-18 results (except retention measures) and related pupil population, workforce and finance data, plus MAT (multi-academy trust) results.

These will be updated further in March 2018, with 2017 16-18 results for remaining measures, 2017 absence data and time series data.

Below, you will find our summary of the additional data which has been published today related to the end of key stage 4, A level and other results for 16- to 18-year-olds and the performance of multi-academy trusts in England.

 

Revised GCSE and equivalent results in England: 2016 to 2017

The DfE has released revised statistics on the achievements of young people at the end of key stage 4 in England, including attainment by pupil characteristics. The change between provisional and revised results in 2017 was slightly smaller than the equivalent change in 2016 for EBacc measures, and the same for English and maths achievement (at grades 4 or above) to the change seen last year (at grades C or above). There was a slightly larger change in average Attainment 8 score.*

The 2017 headline accountability measures for secondary schools are Attainment 8, Progress 8, attainment in English and mathematics at grades 5 or above, EBacc entry and achievement (including a grade 5 or above in English and mathematics), and destinations of pupils after key stage 4.

 

Key findings

  • In comparison to 2016, the average Attainment 8 score per pupil has decreased by 3.9 points for all schools to 44.6 and by 3.6 points for state-funded schools to 46.3 in 2017. These decreases are as expected following changes to the 2017 point scores assigned to grades because of the introduction of 9-1 GCSEs in performance tables.
  • 365 schools are below the floor standard in 2017; this represents 12% of state-funded mainstream schools. In 2016, 282 (9.3%) of schools were below the floor standard.
    • London has the lowest proportion of schools below the floor, with 6.9 per cent, and North East the highest, with 20.9 per cent.

  • Progress 8 scores for mainstream schools at school level run from -2.5 to 1.8, with approximately 99% of schools' scores between -1.6 and +1.0 in 2017. The Progress 8 measure should not be compared year-on-year.
    • Non-selective schools in highly selective areas have the lowest attainment, with an average Attainment 8 score of 42.1, and a Progress 8 core of -0.14, which is statistically significantly below the national average.
  • The gap between disadvantaged pupils and others, measured using the gap index, decreased in five of the last six years, narrowing by 10.0% overall since 2011 and 3.2% since 2016.
    • However, as in 2016, attainment is lower for disadvantaged pupils compared to all other pupils across all headline measures in 2017.
  • The proportion of pupils achieving the headline measure of grades 5 or above in English and maths is 39.6% for all schools and 42.6% for state-funded schools. This figure does not have a comparator in previous years.
  • In 2017, 59.1% of pupils in all schools and 63.9% of pupils in state-funded schools achieved grade 4 or above in English and maths. This figure is comparable to 2016 data because the bottom of a grade 4 in reformed GCSEs maps onto the bottom of a grade C of unreformed GCSEs. Comparison of these figures to equivalent 2016 data shows that attainment in this measure is stable, with an increase of 0.9 percentage points across state-funded schools.
  • The proportion of pupils entering the EBacc has decreased by 1.5 percentage points since 2016. In 2017, 38.2% of pupils in state-funded schools entered the EBacc and 21.3% achieved the EBacc by gaining grades 5 or above in English and maths GCSEs and grades C or above in unreformed qualifications that count towards the remaining EBacc subject areas.
    • However, 23.7% of pupils in state-funded schools achieved the EBacc by gaining grades 4 or above in English and maths GCSEs and grades C or above in unreformed subject areas. This figure is most comparable to 2016 data because the bottom of a grade 4 in reformed GCSEs maps onto the bottom of a grade C in unreformed GCSEs.
    • Comparison of the grade 4 or above figure to the 2016 revised data shows a decrease in EBacc achievement of 1 percentage point
  • EBacc entry rates have also decreased for pupils with average and high prior attainment, from 66.9% in 2016 to 58.3% in 2017.
    • Entry rates continue to rise for pupils with low prior attainment, with 9.0% entering the EBacc in 2017 compared to 8.3% in 2016.
  • Of those pupils who entered four out of the five EBacc components, the majority (80.4%) were missing the languages component in 2017, up from 77.8% in 2016.
  • Although the size of attainment gaps cannot be directly compared between years for the Attainment 8 measure, looking at differences in Attainment 8 score between groups in 2017 highlights the continued disparities in outcomes at GCSE.
    • There is a 5.3 point gap between boys and girls; with girls achieving an average of 49.0, and boys an average of 43.7.
    • There is a 12.8 gap between disadvantaged pupils and all other pupils; with disadvantaged pupils achieving an average of 37.0 compared to 49.8 for all other pupils.
    • There is a 22.4 point gap between pupils with SEN and pupils without SEN; SEN pupils achieve an average of 27.1 compared to 49.5 for pupils with no identified SEN needs.

 

About the research

  • In 2017, pupils sat reformed GCSEs in English language, English literature and maths for the first time, graded on a 9 to 1 scale.
  • New GCSEs in other subjects are being phased in for first teaching from September 2016 to 2018.
  • When comparing 2017 headline measures to the equivalent revised data from 2016, it is important to note the changes in methodology underpinning the 2017 data.
  • The change between provisional and revised results in 2017 was slightly smaller than the equivalent change in 2016 for EBacc measures, and the same for English and maths achievement (at grades 4 or above) to the change seen last year (at grades C or above), as shown in table 3. There was a slightly larger change in average Attainment 8 score.
  • * Possible reasons for this might include an increased number of amendments during the September checking exercise as schools continue to adapt to the new accountability system. There was also an increase in the number of GCSE grades challenged and grades changed in 2017, mainly in the reformed English and English literature GCSEs.
  • Closed schools, including those which closed during the 2016/17 academic year and re-opened as a different type of school (for example, a sponsored academy) are excluded from the floor standards.

A level and other 16 to 18 results: 2016 to 2017 (revised)

The DfE has released revised information on A level and other results for 16 to 18-year-olds, including data by student characteristics. This publication provides an update on the provisional statistics published in October 2017 and also includes 16-18 performance measures broken down by students' disadvantaged status at the end of key stage 4 for the first time.

The headline measures from 2016 are attainment; progress; English and maths (for those who did not achieve A*-C at key stage 4); retention; and destinations.

Key findings

  • The average point score (APS) per entry increased for A level, applied general and tech level students, compared to equivalent 2016 revised data. The APS per entry expressed as a grade remained stable for all cohorts.
  • English and maths average progress increased for students still working towards qualifications below level 3 compared to 2016.
    • In 2017, average progress is close to zero for students still studying GCSE or stepping stone qualifications. This means on average a student's point score is the same or slightly lower at the end of 16-18 studies than at the end of KS4.
    • In 2017, 391,266 students were in scope for the measure, and 24.2% of those achieved an approved level 3 maths qualification during the 16-18 study. As this is a new measure for 2017, it is not possible to make comparisons over time.
  • Of the total number of 16 to 18 providers assessed, 4.9% and 5.2% had value added progress scores that fell below the minimum standards set by the department for level 3 academic and applied general qualifications respectively.
  • In 2017 (the 2016/17 academic year), there were 429,364 students who completed their 16-18 studies and entered at least one eligible level 3 qualification, down by 2.5% compared to 2016.
    • The fall in level 3 students is mainly driven by a decrease in AS level entries as result of A level reform; and a fall in participation in tech level qualifications by male students.
    • More female students participate in level 3 study than males. In 2017, 52.6% of level 3 students were female, compared to 48.7% in the potential 16-18 cohort.
  • Attainment for those taking A levels or applied A levels only increased slightly compared to 2016.
    • The proportion of students who achieved 3 A*-A or better and AAB or better remained stable, at 13.4% and 22.4% respectively, compared to 13.2% and 22.1% in 2016.
  • Overall female students achieved a higher APS per entry in A levels, but a higher proportion of male students achieved top grades. This is the same pattern as the previous year.
    • Female students achieved higher grades for the best 3 measure (B-) compared to male students (C+). However, a higher proportion of male students achieved 3 A*-A grades or better (14.9%) and AAB grades or better (23.3%) compared to females, at 12.2% and 21.7% respectively.
    • The gender gap in the proportion of students who achieved at least 3 A*-A has increased to 2.7 percentage points in 2017, compared to 1.9 percentage points in 2016.
  • In 2017, 24.6% of applied general students and 23.7% of tech level students in state-funded institutions were reported as disadvantaged at the end of key stage 4, compared to 15.4% for A level students.
  • Attainment is lower for disadvantaged pupils compared to non-disadvantaged students across all qualification types. The average grade for A levels was C- for disadvantaged students, and C+ for non-disadvantaged students. For applied general and tech level qualifications, the average grades were the same for disadvantaged and non-disadvantaged students (Dist and Dist- respectively), however, the average point scores per entry are lower for disadvantaged students than non-disadvantaged student.
  • At local authority level, the average point score (APS) per A level entry lies between a grade C- and C+ for over 90% of LAs. The highest performing local authorities are located in the Outer London and South East, a pattern that has remained the same as 2016. The poorest performing local authorities are in the North West and Inner London.

About the data

  • Performance measures across qualifications types should not be directly compared due to differences in entry patterns and grading structures between qualification types.
  • The new level 3 maths measure reports on students at the end of 16-18 study who achieved an A*-C grade in GCSE maths (or equivalent) by the end of key stage 4 and go on to achieve an approved5 level 3 maths qualification during 16-18 studies.

 Schools' performance tables are like comparing apples with pears. Read our press comment here.


29/01/2018