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Pupils' SATs results declared invalid after government probe

PUBLISHED: 11:44 11 July 2019 | UPDATED: 17:41 11 July 2019

Cantley Primary School and Nursery. Pupils at the school and its sister school Horning Community Primary School, collectively known as the Together Foundation, have had English SATs results from 2018 annulled after a government investigation. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Cantley Primary School and Nursery. Pupils at the school and its sister school Horning Community Primary School, collectively known as the Together Foundation, have had English SATs results from 2018 annulled after a government investigation. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

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Pupils at two primary schools in Norfolk have had their SATs results declared invalid following a government investigation.

The Standards and Testing Agency conducted an investigation into English grammar, punctuation and spelling test results from 2018 from Horning Community Primary School and Cantley Primary School.

As a result of the investigation the results at both schools were annulled, however no reason has been given. In total 24 pupils were affected.

School leaders said they were disappointed with the findings but that measures had been put in place to stop a similar occurrence.

Schools are provided annually with comprehensive guidance on administering tests for pupils. Investigations into exam results take place where there has been a suspicion of "maladministration" or malpractice.

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Horning and Cantley primaries, both judged to be good by Ofsted, are collectively known as the Together Foundation.

Department for Education data from last year's key stage two SATs shows that 88pc of pupils at Horning Primary reached the expected standards in reading, writing and maths. At Cantley Primary, 63pc met the expected standards and 13pc achieved the "higher standard".

Martin White, who took over as interim executive headteacher at the Together Foundation in May, said the situation had been fully investigated and that no other test results had been affected in either 2018 or 2019.

He said: "We expect the highest standards when tests are administered in our school and are extremely disappointed that an issue was identified with the 2018 key stage two test for English grammar, punctuation and spelling.

"We have fully investigated what happened and have ensured that the correct procedures have been put in place to prevent this from happening again. We have written to the parents of those children affected to let them know and to reassure them that this will not impact their children's educational progress.

"We have total confidence in the staff who administered all statutory tests this year."

A Department for Education spokesperson said: "Teachers and parents must have confidence in the integrity of the assessment system, which is why we take allegations of maladministration very seriously. Any instances of maladministration of the national curriculum assessments are completely unacceptable."

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