Key stage 2 (KS2) to Key stage 4 (KS4) progress measures for English and for maths

Progress measures form part of the Government's "floor standards" which are applied to identify underperforming schools. You can find more information on this under expected levels of school performance.

What do we mean by expected progress for English and maths between KS2 and KS4?

The Government currently sets a minimum expectation of the rate of progress that all pupils should make during a key stage, regardless of their starting point.  The majority of children are expected to leave KS2 (age 11), working at least at level 4.  By the end of KS4, pupils who were at level 4 should progress to achieve at least a grade C at GCSE; while pupils working at level 6 should be expected to achieve at least an A at GCSE, see diagram below. These are minimum expectations.

The measures in the tables show the proportion of eligible pupils who, by the end of KS4, have made at least expected progress.

More detailed guidance on the calculation of these measures can be found here.

Key Stage 2-4: Minimum expected level of progress

Value Added

Value Added (VA) is a measure of the progress students make between different stages of education in relation to their peers nationally. That is, we look at the progress each pupil makes between KS2 and KS4 and compare that with progress made by pupils nationally that, according to KS2 tests, were of the same level of ability at that time.

The school level VA scores published in the tables are centered around 1000. This means that a school with a VA score of over 1000 is, generally speaking, helping its pupils make more progress than the average for pupils with similar prior attainment. If a school has a score of less than 1000, its pupils may still be making progress, but not as many are making similar or better progress as children who ended KS2 at the same level.

In the tables, we give:

  • VA measures for KS2 to KS4, based on a pupil's "best eight" results, with bonuses awarded for achievements in English and maths;
  • VA measures for KS2 to KS4, based on progress made in each of the English baccalaureate subject areas;
  • "Coverage" show the percentage of pupils included in the measure (either at the end of KS4 or, for English Baccalaureate subject area VA, the percentage of those entered for the subject). If there is no KS2 data for a pupil, we cannot calculate what progress they have made, so they must be excluded from this measure. If the coverage is below 50%, then we do not publish the VA score because it does not properly represent the effectiveness of the school;
  • Confidence Intervals (CIs) - These show the range within which we can be 95% confident that the "true" VA score will lie. The width of the CI depends on the strength of the relationship between a pupil's KS2 English and maths test results and their relevant KS4 outcomes, and the number of pupils included in the calculation. Between different measures, a stronger KS2 to KS4 relationship will result in narrower confidence intervals (for example, if we see that pupils performing strongly at one key stage tend to continue to perform strongly at the next). For each individual measure, smaller school cohorts will widen the intervals, as we have less evidence upon which to judge the school's effectiveness.

More detailed guidance on VA and how it is calculated can be found in the technical guides and documents section.