South Tyneside pupils a top-class act in league tables

THUMBS-UP ... Simonside Primary School deputy headteacher Edward Jackson and Year 6 pupils celebrate the school's results.
THUMBS-UP ... Simonside Primary School deputy headteacher Edward Jackson and Year 6 pupils celebrate the school's results.

youngsters in South Tyneside have made the grade in new school performance tables released today.

The borough’s primary schools chalked up impressive results in the Key Stage 2 figures for children aged seven to 11, with 79 per cent of pupils reaching Level 4 or above in maths and reading and writing – beating the national average of 75 per cent.

Simonside Primary School, in Jarrow, led the way with 96 per cent of its pupils achieving at least Level 4 – the expected standard for their age group – in maths, reading and writing tests, the highest figure out of South Tyneside’s 45 primary schools.

A faultless 100 per cent of pupils reached Level 4 in maths, English and science.

The school, in Glasgow Road, says the result is just reward for the efforts of pupils and staff alike.

St Gregory’s RC Primary School and Cleadon Village CofE Primary School achieved more than the double the 21 per cent national average for children reaching Level 5 in maths, reading and writing, with 48 and 47 per cent respectively.

Edward Jackson, deputy deadteacher of Simonside Primary School, was delighted with the results, which he says proves the school is making great progress and boosting the learning of children of all abilities and backgrounds. Mr Jackson said: “We are very proud of all of the children, who have worked very hard.

“These are outstanding results. It has been an outstanding effort from everyone at the school to make as much progress as they possibly can, regardless of their ability and background.

“Across the board in maths, English and science, 100 per cent of our pupils reached the Level 4 standard, with a significant proportion of pupils exceeding that standards.

“In our last Ofsted report we got a satisfactory mark, which we weren’t too happy about.

“Our very, very strong results go to show the progress that we have made.”

A total of nine schools in the borough had over 90 per cent of pupils matching or exceeding the Level 4 standard, including Marine Park Primary School (95 per cent) and St Gregory’s RC Primary School, East Boldon Junior School and St Peter and Paul RC Primary School (all 93 per cent).

As well as 79 per cent of pupils attaining Level 4 in maths, reading and writing, 87 per cent at least reached Level 4 in individual maths and English tests, with 86 per cent hitting that standard in science studies.

Coun Joan Atkinson, South Tyneside Council’s lead member for children, young people and families, has hailed the work of staff and pupils in gaining ‘fantastic’ results.

Coun Atkinson said: “This is a fantastic set of results and I’m delighted to see so many of our primary schools performing so well in their reading, writing and maths.

“Children at St Gregory’s RC and Cleadon Village CofE primary schools have done exceptionally well with 48 per cent and 47 per cent of them respectively gaining the higher Level 5.

“Despite changes in the way Key Stage 2 attainment is measured, we are beating the national average of 75 per cent for Level 4 by a wider margin than ever.

“Our schools are also bucking the national trend in a new key test to measure spelling, punctuation and grammar.

“A staggering 76 per cent of our children achieved this against a national average of 73 per cent.

“The excellent performance in this important combination of subjects is testament to the hard work of the pupils.

“Well done to them all. I’d also like to thanks the staff, parents and carers who have supported them on the road to success.”

Coun Atkinson has vowed that the council will continue work closely with schools to strive for further improvement.

“We are not complacent and will continue to work closely with all of our schools to help them improve because we want all of our pupils to aim high and reach their full potential.

“Strong academic achievement provides our children and young people with a solid foundation from they can succeed.”