E-ACT primary school has SATs results cancelled for reading and maths

Year 6 pupils at a primary academy in Birmingham run by the chain E-ACT will not receive scores for their reading and maths SATs, after the Standards and Testing Agency (STA) found “doubt over the accuracy or correctness” of the results.

The STA has been examining how the tests were managed at Nechells Primary E-ACT Academy since July 9, and has now concluded that no scores will be handed out for reading or maths this year.

The results in English writing and in grammar, punctuation and spelling, from the tests the pupils took back in May, will still stand.

A letter sent out to parents on August 22 said the trust was “deeply disappointed” by the STA’s findings, “especially as Birmingham local authority could find no indication of malpractice at the academy”.

Staff at Nechells will now work with local secondary schools to ensure that they have the information they need on year 6 pupils, including teacher assessments, to make sure they are not at a disadvantage when transitioning into key stage 3.

The trust will also be launching and conducting a “thorough investigation” into what happened at the school, which was rated ‘requires improvement’ by Ofsted in March 2016.

An E-ACT spokesperson said: “We are deeply disappointed by the STA’s findings as we expect the highest standards of teaching, learning and assessment at all of our academies.

“We recognise that this news will be upsetting for parents, however, we have reassured them that this will not cause any pupil to be at a disadvantage when moving to secondary school.

“E-ACT will now be carrying out a full and thorough investigation to determine what actions will be taken next.”

Two other primary schools have also had their SATs results witheld this month, following investigations by the STA.

The agency investigated ‘outstanding’ St Matthew’s Church of England Primary School in Hillingdon in response to allegations of “maladministration” of the tests, and pupils’ maths results were annulled. 

The school has been part of the Fray’s Academy Trust, which runs four primary schools and a nursery in the Hillingdon area, since 2013.

Meanwhile Harris Academy Philip Lane in north London, a school previously held up by ministers as a shining example of academisation, was found to have “overaided” pupils in their English reading and maths reasoning SATs papers.

The school’s year 6 pupils’ scores in those papers were wiped and they only received scores for their grammar, punctuation and spelling tests.

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  1. While not condoning any test maladministration, Nechells E-Act Primary Academy was working under trying circumstances. A ceiling had collapsed just two school days before the SAT season as I describe here:
    It should be possible to exempt schools which have experienced a traumatic incident from SAT tests. After all, they serve no educational value.