SATS AND ASSESSMENT INFORMATION
TO FIND OUT INFORMATION ABOUT TESTING IN 2023
WHAT ARE SATS?
Sats stands for “standardised assessment tests”. They are national tests that children in state schools across the country sit at the same time. At KS1, children are assessed in English, mathematics and science, and at KS2 they are assessed in English and mathematics.
WHAT THE SATS MEASURE
The English SATs assess pupils on their knowledge of the rules of punctuation, grammar and the accuracy of their spelling, whereas the reading tests assess their reading comprehension skills and their vocabulary.
The mathematics SATs test the pupils on their knowledge of mathematical operations, their mathematical fluency, their ability to solve problems and their reasoning.
STATUTORY ASSESSMENTS IN KEY STAGE 1
YEAR 1 PHONICS SCREENING
The Phonics Screening Check is conducted to show how well children can use the phonics skills they’ve learned up to the end of Year 1, and to identify students who need extra phonics help. The Department for Education defines the checks as “short, light-touch assessments” that take about four to nine minutes to complete. The screen is administered over a period of time. The check consists of 40 words and non-words that the children are asked to read one-on-one with a teacher. Non-words (or alien words as the children at Ordsall Primary School know them) are a collection of letters that will follow phonics rules the children have been taught, but don’t mean anything – the children will need to read these with the correct sounds to show that they understand the phonics rules behind them.
In 2023 the phonics screening week is the week commencing Monday 12 June 2023.
YEAR 2 STATUTORY ASSESSMENTS
The 2021 KS1 SATs will take place at some point throughout May 2023. The precise days of the tests varies from school to school as they are given a greater degree of flexibility than KS2 SATs. In 2022 they will be completed at some point between 1 May 2023 and 31 May 2023.
KS1 ENGLISH PAPERS
There are two reading papers for KS1 pupils to complete, and two spelling, punctuation and grammar tests. The teacher can decide if pupils can have a break in the middle of any of the tests if needed.
The first paper requires pupils to read two extracts and complete “practice questions” with a teacher. Then pupils must complete a mixture of short answer and multiple-choice questions. Each question is worth one mark and there are 20 questions. The test is not timed but should take about 30 minutes to complete.
The second reading paper requires pupils to read a booklet that contains three extracts. The questions are a mixture of multiple choice and short-answer questions. There are 16 one-mark questions and two two-mark questions. The test is worth 20 marks overall. The test is not timed but should take about 40 minutes to complete.
In total, the reading papers last 70 minutes.
The spelling paper requires the student to listen to their teacher as a transcript is read and fill in the missing words on their sheet. There are 20 words that they need to spell. Each word is worth one mark, so there are 20 marks in total.
The grammar and punctuation paper is a mixture of multiple choice and short-answer questions. Pupils will also be asked to add punctuation to pre-written sentences. There are 19 questions, 19 one-mark and one two-mark question. The test is worth 20 marks in total. The test lasts for 45 minutes.
KS1 MATHEMATICS PAPERS
Paper one is on arithmetic and pupils are not permitted to use a calculator. There are 25 questions, each worth one mark, and the test lasts for 20 minutes.
Paper two is on reasoning and pupils are not permitted to use a calculator. There are 32 questions, each worth one or two marks. The test lasts for 35 minutes and is worth 35 marks overall.
KS2 STATUTORY ASSESSMENT TESTS
YEAR 4 MULTIPLICATION TIMETABLE CHECK (MTC)
The multiplication tables check is an online test for children in Year 4. The children are asked to answer 25 questions on times tables from two to 12. Schools have a 3-week check window in June to administer the MTC and teachers will have the flexibility to administer the check to individual pupils, small groups or a whole class at the same time. The children are given six seconds per question, with three seconds rest between each question, so the test should last less than five minutes. The purpose of the MTC is to determine whether pupils can recall their times tables fluently, which is essential for future success in mathematics. It supports the school to identify pupils who have not yet mastered their times tables, so that additional support can be provided.
In 2022 schools must administer the multiplication tables check within the 3-week period from Monday 5 June 2022.
YEAR 6 STATUTORY ASSESSMENTS
The National KS2 SATs will take place from Tuesday 9 May to Friday 12 May 2023.
KS2 ENGLISH PAPERS
Spelling, punctuation and grammar (SPAG) – two papers
This element of the tests requires children to identify and write sentences that have correct grammar, punctuation, vocabulary and spelling. This assesses children on their technical understanding of the English language as well as their writing ability. It comprises two papers:
- Paper 1: This paper contains a series of SPAG questions requiring short answers. Children will have 45 minutes to answer the questions, which are worth a total of 50 marks.
- Paper 2: This is a spelling paper in which children are given a section of text with 20 missing words. The test invigilator will read out the test transcript for children to correctly spell the missing words in their answer booklet. The test takes approximately 15 minutes but is not strictly timed. The questions are worth a total of 20 marks.
Reading – one paper
The KS2 reading test is only one paper, containing comprehension questions based on three different genres of text. The test has a reading booklet and a separate answer booklet. Children will have one hour to read all three texts and complete the questions, which are worth a total of 50 marks.
In addition to the reading test, children take a ‘teacher assessment’ in writing. This will be set and marked by their teacher and will not take place during the KS2 SATs week
Maths – three papers
The maths test comprises two components, presented to pupils as three test papers:
- Paper 1: This is largely an arithmetic test, assessing children’s grasp of mathematical calculations. The questions cover addition and subtraction and more complex calculations with fractions worth 1 mark each. They also cover long division and long multiplication questions worth 2 marks each. Pupils will have 30 minutes to answer the questions which are worth 40 marks in total.
- Papers 2 and 3: These papers assess children’s mathematical fluency – solving mathematical problems and using mathematical reasoning. Both papers will contain varied question types including multiple choice, true or false, constrained questions (e.g. giving the answer to a calculation, drawing a shape or completing a table or chart) and problem solving. Pupils will have 40 minutes to complete each test paper, each being worth 35 marks.
Children will be given standardised scores. You will be given your child’s score, alongside the average for their school, the local area and nationally. There will also be a ‘performance descriptor’ of the expected standard for Key Stage 2 pupils. The Department for Education is aiming for 85 per cent of children to reach or exceed that standard.