‘Must do better’ to hit the pre-school targets
Figures show overall performance levels lowest of all London boroughs
PRE-SCHOOL children are less likely to reach a ‘good level of development’ by age five in Hillingdon than in any other London borough, official figures show.
Only 52 per cent of children in the borough reached the government’s expected level of achievement by the end of their Early Years Foundation Stage in 2013/14, according to industry inspector Ofsted’s latest annual report.
This was the lowest level in the capital. The highest was 75 per cent, in Lewisham. The total London proportion was 62 per cent. The total national proportion was 60 per cent.
The figures were taken from the Department of Education, which defines those reaching a ‘good level of development’ as those meeting expected targets for communication and language; physical development; personal, social and emotional development; literacy and mathematics.
Councillor David Simmonds, deputy leader of Hillingdon Council and cabinet member for education and children’s services, said the figures were at least improving.
He said: “Children’s centres and other early years education providers in the borough are moving in the right direction, with overall performance levels at 52 per cent of children reaching a good level of achievement in the key areas, an increase of 11 per cent in the last year.
“There is work to do and we recognise the need for them to focus on literacy in order to ensure outcomes are as high as possible. However, it is encouraging to see that they are achieving well in individual goals.”
The Ofsted report also ranked Hillingdon in the bottom third of all London boroughs in terms of the proportion of pupils attending highly-rated primary and secondary schools.
The watchdog found that in 2013/14, 81 per cent of primary school pupils and 76 per cent of secondary school students in the borough attended schools rated ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’.
Councillor Simmonds said: “The percentage of pupils attending a good or better graded primary school in Hillingdon has increased in the last year, in line with the national picture that primary schools are improving. Nearly all secondary schools in Hillingdon are academy schools, which are accountable to the Secretary of State for Education.’’