MORE PUPILS leaving primary education in Hampshire are achieving SATs results above the national average, fresh figures reveal.

Across the county, excluding Southampton, 68% of Year 6 children reached the expected standards in reading, writing and maths with 12% exceeding them, according to the Department for Education. This is compared to 64% and 12% nationally.

This figure for Hampshire has risen from 66% and 11% last year, and 59% and 7% in 2016.

However, in Southampton just 8% of pupils are exceeding standards, with 66% achieving what is expected.

Nevertheless, this figure has risen – if only slightly, from 62% and 7% in 2017, and 54% and 5% in 2016.

Several schools across the area notably stood out, including Swaythling-based Mansbridge Primary, which saw 79% of its pupils meeting the expected standards, with a further 18% going beyond.

But, most importantly, the academic progress its student made from the end of KS1 to KS2 places it in the top 5% of schools nationwide.

It recorded an ‘Above Average’ progression mark for its Writing results, with ‘Well Above Average’ top marks for Reading and Maths.

Headteacher Mark Sheehan said: “Firstly I must stress that our school is not just about SATs results although they are very important.

“Our main focus is to provide a whole school curriculum to maximise the spiritual, cultural and moral development of pupils. This is to help make the world a better place for themselves and others for now and for the future. A formidable challenge we know – but the key word is better, not perfect.

“However, that said, we are extremely proud of our KS2 results. What we are most proud of is the progress children make at our school – both disadvantaged and non-disadvantaged children.

“I believe we are the number one school in the city for progress in reading, writing and maths combined from end of KS1 to end of KS2. This places us in the top 5% of schools in the country for progress– possibly even higher.

“I would like to thank the whole school staff for their relentless dedication and professionalism.

"Furthermore, we must not forget the children since without their positive attitudes and work ethic we could not have achieved these wonderful results.”

Elsewhere in the county, another school to do well was Chandler’s Ford-based St Swithun Wells Catholic Primary, which recorded “Well Above Average” progression marks for all of the exams areas. It also saw 82% of its pupils pass exams, and 14% exceed expectations.

St Faith’s Church of England Primary School in Winchester was another to do well. It saw 90% of its pupils pass their exams and recorded “Well Above Average” progression in Reading and Writing.

But it wasn’t just council-run schools that hit the high notes, several academies across the area achieved positive results.

Springhill Catholic Primary, in Milton Road, Southampton, recorded a 93% pass mark, with ‘Above Average’ progression marks in all three exam areas.

Elsewhere in the city, Portswood Primary School noted a 91% pass rate, and a massive 40% exceeding expectations. It also saw “Well Above Average” progression mark for Reading and Maths, as well as an “Above Average” mark for Writing.

Councillor Stephen Reid, education chief at Hampshire County Council, said: “We are proud of the high standard of education to which pupils in Hampshire have access and I would like to congratulate school staff for all they do to maintain high standards.

“The majority of Hampshire’s primary schools are judged to be good or outstanding by Ofsted. And, in spite of the increasing pressures and financial challenges, we continue to work hard to support our family of schools with a range of improvement advice and other services that contribute to their ability to excel.

“Where a school needs assistance to improve its performance, our School Improvement experts are ready and able to offer the advice that will help them.”

Councillor Darren Paffey, Southampton City Council’s Cabinet Member for Aspiration, Schools and Lifelong Learning said: “This year’s Key Stage 2 results show encouraging news for Southampton’s primary schools and areas where we need to improve.

"Many of our schools are achieving results well beyond the national average and must be congratulated on their success today. 

"Overall 2018 has been a year of further progression in academic standards with Southampton’s primary schools recently rated by Ofsted as amongst the most improved in the south east.

“There are undoubtedly improvements to be made and we’re committed to supporting our primary schools to be ambitious and achieve national average for Key Stage 2.

"Only a few schools have achieved less than they would have hoped, but we’re confident that they will progress over the next academic year.”