Every pupil needs a good mathematics education - Ofsted
Mathematics: made to measure, a newly published Ofsted report, emphasises the importance for every pupil to have the best possible mathematics education. The report highlights a dramatic increase in the take-up of A-level and further mathematics, and shows that the youngest children are doing better. GCSE and A level results continue to rise as a result of the sustained efforts of teachers and students.
However, the report finds three key areas in primary and secondary mathematics in schools in England which need to be improved:
- Firstly, not enough is being done to help pupils catch up who fall behind early. The 10% who do not reach the expected standard at age 7 doubles to 20% by age 11, and nearly doubles again by age 16.
- Secondly, inspection evidence shows that pupils in lower ability sets and younger pupils received the weakest teaching. Inspectors regularly saw outstanding and satisfactory teaching, and sometimes inadequate too, within an individual school.
- Thirdly, lots of the brightest pupils do not fulfil their potential when they get to secondary school. 37,000 of the highest attaining primary school pupils got no better than a grade C at GCSE in mathematics last year. Schools which routinely enter students early for GCSE mathematics are hindering their ability to reach the highest grades.
The report draws attention to serious inequalities in pupils' experiences and achievements. It includes examples of best practice that help avoid or overcome the inequalities and weaker practice that exacerbates them.
For more information and to view the report, visit www.ofsted.gov.uk