Agenda item

Coventry Education Performance 2023

Briefing Note of the Director for Education and Skills


The Board considered a briefing note of the Director for Education and Skills which provided an update on Coventry’s 2023 performance in the following areas:


·  Ofsted profile

·  Trends in pupil numbers

·  Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS)

·  Phonics and Key Stage 1

·  Key Stage 2

·  Key Stage 4 (provisional)

·  Age 16-19 attainment

·  Post-16 participation in education, employment and training

·  Attendance and exclusions

·  Difference in performance between males and females

·  Performance of vulnerable groups


The briefing note detailed the vision of the Coventry Education Partnership which encompasses high expectations for the achievement of children and young people to achieve their full potential whatever their culture or background. Statutorily it is the responsibility of school leaders to secure improvement in their school, but as part of our working partnership with all schools and settings, the LA acts as champions of educational excellence, forging strong professional relationships and networks.


Specifically, the Coventry Education Partnership prioritises enhancing the quality of education in Coventry for the 2023/24 academic year while bringing together the local authority, the primary school networks, the secondary collaboratives, and the school-to-school support in supporting schools on their improvement journey. Specific priorities for each key stage are also listed, such as early language development, phonics, reading, writing, maths, and post-16 outcomes.


Overall, most schools in Coventry have improved their Ofsted ratings in the last 12 months, but the proportion of children attending a good or better school is still below national average. Many inspections are imminent and positive outcomes are expected, which will improve Coventry's Ofsted profile. It also mentions the challenges faced by some schools due to Covid-related disruptions.


In terms of pupil population trends, Coventry has experienced a steady increase in pupil numbers, free school meal eligibility, non-white British children, and SEN support over the last five years. The data in the briefing note supports the changes in these indicators from 2019 to 2023 and compares them with national and statistical neighbours. It also highlights the implications of these trends for the provision and quality of education in Coventry.


Similarly, data explores he attainment and progress of pupils in Coventry at different key stages, from EYFS to KS5. It highlights the areas of improvement and challenge for each stage, and compares Coventry's performance with national and statistical neighbours. It shows that Coventry has improved its performance in most measures, especially in EYFS, KS1, and KS4, but remains below national average in some areas, such as reading at KS2 and A level grades at KS5. It also shows that Coventry has a positive Progress 8 score at KS4, indicating that pupils make more progress than expected nationally.


Aditionally, the briefing note identified that Coventry has a high rate of pupils progressing to education, employment or training after completing their 16 to 18 study, and a low rate of NEETs. There has also been a significant increase in the number of A level entries and the level 3 cohort, compared to national averages. This reflects the aspirations and achievements of Coventry's young people.


Overall, Coventry’s performance is in line with or above its statistical neighbours for most measures at all key stages of education – these statistical neighbours are directly comparable to Coventry because of similarities in size and other important characteristics. For many (but not all) of the key performance measures Coventry is below national average and this reflects the characteristics of the city in comparison to all Local Authorities nationally. However, national averages remain the target and all Coventry schools continue to strive to meet or exceed national benchmarks. It is important to note that as children and young people progress in education within Coventry their performance continually improves and by the time they reach the end of their school years they secure positive destinations, i.e. high levels of education, employment, or training. This is testament to the whole system, the strong partnership between Coventry education providers and a relentless focus on next steps.


The Board questioned Officers and received responses on a number of matters relating to the Coventry Education Performance 2023 including:


·  Strategies schools and the local authority have to achieve higher levels of attendance – barriers to those not attending and bullying in schools as an aspect of non-attendance.

·  Transport and children having to travel further to attend school have an impact on attendance – travel training programs for children who live further away.

·  Early years fluency in reading – strengthening current strategies to ensure children become fluent readers, using our budget effectively, adopting a data approach to recognise any gaps in children’s learning with a specific focus on those considered disadvantaged, and utilising our join up approach to incorporate strategies such as Birth to 5 to give children and parents the resources they need.

·  Early years learning and literacy in the age of the internet and the impact this is having on reading skills.

·  The current availability of written materials in an environment of budget cuts.

·  Audio and IT resources helping children from different backgrounds.

·  Differences in key stage data performance between 2022 and 2023 being linked to resource allocation.

·  Links between exclusion data and SEND children – increased numbers of SEND children in mainstream schools, workforce and exclusion strategies including a new tiered model, potential exclusion patterns for specific cohorts, and the difference between managed (6 weeks) and supportive (12 weeks) moves.

·  Key stage 2 attainment increasing but progress decreasing and the data patterns to explain this anomaly.

·  Increases of children coming into the system and where from.

·  The increase in children accessing free school meals and ensuring everyone who qualifies gets one.

·  Changes to the Ofsted rating scheme and the current consultation underway to discuss the new framework.


RESOLVED that the Board:


1)  Identifies the following areas for further scrutiny and adds them to the Work Programme for the April meeting of the Board:


-  SEND and Early Years Provision


-  One Strategic Plan – School Place Sufficiency

Supporting documents: