King David is highest performing Jewish school in national primary school league tables


Four of the community’s primary schools have achieved the maximum scores possible in the Department for Education’s league tables for state schools, which were released on Thursday.

King David Primary in Manchester topped the tables with 100 per cent of its pupils achieving level four or above in reading, writing and maths and 68 per cent of its pupils achieving level five. The school had a value-added score of 103.

Barnet Council claimed the next best results, with three of its schools — Akiva, Menorah Primary and Independent Jewish Day School — all scoring 100 per cent in level four reading, writing and maths.

Kate Daniels, chair of governors at Akiva, celebrated “another set of outstanding results”.

“They are a tribute to our staff, parents and governors, as well as our students,” she said. “But just as important to our school is the students’ love of life-long learning, their pride in Jewish values, and their understanding of the importance of community — something that cannot be measured by league tables.”

Our league table here reveals the performance of all Jewish state primary schools this year, based on the results of their year six pupils who sat the National Curriculum tests.

The first column shows the percentage of pupils who achieved level four or above in reading, writing and maths. Schools are now expected to ensure that at least 65 per cent of their pupils achieve level four or above; this indicates that they can spell properly, use joined up handwriting and employ grammatically sound sentences, and also multiply and divide whole numbers by 10 or 100 and understand simple percentages.

The second column charts the percentage of pupils who achieved level five or above in reading and maths, which is above average and exceeds the expectations of their year group.

Finally, the value-added score of each school is listed. This measures each pupil’s individual progress from one key stage to the next, taking into consideration factors such as gender, special educational needs and family circumstances. A score of 100 is considered “par” — higher than 100 is better than average.

More than half of the schools listed here received an above average value-added score of 100 or higher.

But while the league tables revealed another year of impressive results for Jewish schools, Sacks Morasha headteacher Hayley Gross warned that it was important to put every school’s performance in context.

She said that the Finchley school’s result of 78 per cent of students who achieved level four in reading, writing and maths was deceptive, as only nine pupils had sat the tests — including two who did not speak English as a first language, and a further few who had learning difficulties.

“Due to the very small class in last year’s year six, the published data is misleading as each child counts for more than 10 per cent,” she said. “Given this context, we are extremely proud of each child’s results and their incredible progress, as well as their unity as a small class, which could be exceptionally challenging”. The school had no value-added score as it only became voluntary-aided in 2013.

Are Jewish schools a victim of their own success? Listen to our education special podcast looking at the current admissions situation at Jewish schools

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