SATS exams– what you need to know

Child's hands during an exam

Children across Bedford Borough are sitting their SATS exams this week, a series of tests to gauge their progress in school.

Year 6 pupils, aged 10 or 11, are taking their SATS, or Standard Assessment Tests, on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. There are tests on English reading, English grammar, punctuation, spelling, and maths. They will also be assessed by teachers on subjects including speaking and listening, writing and, in some cases, science.

Children in Year 2 may also take SATS this month, with specific dates decided by each school. Their tests will be in reading and maths. They will also be assessed by their teacher on science, writing, and speaking and listening.

A Bedford Borough Council spokesperson said; “We know that SATS, like any exams, can be a stressful time for children, but there is nothing for them to worry about. The goal of SATS is to measure children’s progress and identify where they need support.

“For parents and carers, the best praise is when you tell them how hard they have worked, rather than for the score they achieve.”

They added; “Try to keep everything else in life running normally; whether its sport, music lessons or Scouts and Guides; sticking to their normal routine of out of school activities makes it clear to your child that SATs are not the be all and end all. But also try to avoid late nights, as children will find sitting the tests tiring.

“If you want to help with preparation, reading is a key part of primary education so keep encouraging daily reading whether your child reads on their own or if you read together. Discuss the books, the characters, the storylines and ask for their own opinion on the book.

“You can play mental games when you are on the way home, whether you are walking or driving. Card games, Uno, Monopoly and dominoes all help with maths, and games like hangman, Boggle or Scrabble will support with literacy.

“And remember that it may not be as stressful for your child as you might fear - many children enjoy taking the tests as they see it as a challenge, and like the importance and the feeling of being special that SATs give Year 6!”

It is up to individual schools if and when they will share the Year 2 SATS results for each child with their parents or carers. Many of them will include a summary of them in the end of year report.

The SATS results for children in Year 6 will normally be released the first two weeks of July. They also show how a child has progressed between their Year 2 and Year 6 SATS, and identify how different schools’ results compare.

Each child receives a ‘scaled score’ from their SATS. Last year the top scaled score was 120, and the lowest scaled score a child could get was 80. A scaled score of 100 or more meant that they met the expected standard.

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