Bognor school has SATs results declared void over ‘maladministration’

Southway Primary School.LA1500164-1 SUS-150727-183401008
Southway Primary School.LA1500164-1 SUS-150727-183401008

A primary school has had its SATs results wiped out because of “maladministration” during the tests.

An investigation by the government’s Standards and Testing Agency (STA) led to all the Year 6 results for children at Southway Primary, in Bognor, being annulled.

Southway Primary School.LA1500164-2 SUS-150727-183512008

Southway Primary School.LA1500164-2 SUS-150727-183512008

Parents are now demanding an explanation after being told the news on the last day of term.

One said: “We want transparency. We want to know what’s going on. They put our children through months of stress for this. Whatever they have done, whatever rules they haven’t followed, we deserve to know.”

The school – whose headteacher is leaving at Christmas to join Ofsted – is part of the United Learning family.

It was United Learning itself which contacted the STA to share concerns from “members of the school community” about the way the tests had been conducted.

Chief executive Jon Coles told parents disciplinary hearings would be held and the group would be carrying out its own investigations.

He added: “I hope you would agree that we should not accept malpractice in any school, and that it is crucial that we find out in detail what happened and why so that we can ensure that it doesn’t happen again.”

A spokesman said United Learning would work over the summer with the secondary schools to which the pupils were transferring to ensure they had all the information they needed about their progress.

One parent branded the SATs “a ridiculous waste of time, money and effort”.

She said: “The school kept telling me how important they were and how they were vital for the senior school to be able to place the kids in the right sets.

“My daughter worked her backside off for five months and now, because of the decisions made by one or more teachers, she is not going to receive the recognition she deserves.”

A spokesman for the STA said it was working with the governing body at Southway to ensure this year’s mistakes were not repeated.

He added: “Any instances of maladministration of the tests are completely unacceptable.”

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