Pupils making good improvements

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WIGAN Council says youngsters are making good progress in their development despite a recent report which placed the borough among the country’s worst-performing authorities.

The town hall hit back after research by University College London’s Institute of Health Equity showed just 38 per cent of five-year-olds reached a good level of development in 2013.

Wigan Council said its information suggested that figure was set to rise significantly to 56 per cent achieving a good level of development in 2014 and said last year’s lower figure was due to the way the town hall interpreted a new set of national guidelines for assessments.

Anne Goldsmith, dierctor for children and young people’s services, said: “The latest information reflects the hard work we have put into this area as well as benchmarking our approach with other councils. There’s still more work to do but it’s encouraging we’re already seeing such an improvement.

“Despite some difficult social issues in parts of the borough, it’s clear Wigan children make good progress in primary school, which continues throughout their education.”

Wigan Council says its latest data shows pupils are making good progress throughout their education development, with figures showing the proportion of pupils reaching the required level in year one phonics rising from 72 per cent last year to 77 per cent.

Provisional results also suggest 83 per cent of pupils have achieved a level four or higher in reading, writing and maths at the end of key stage two this year, an improvement of three per cent from the previous year’s results.

The 2014 results look set to place Wigan above the average in England for achieving good development at the end of early years foundation learning, with 52 per cent of five-year-olds reaching that level in 2013. However, this was a reduction from 59 per cent in 2011.