Advanced search

What is KS level 4B?

(22 Posts)
abadoo Fri 31-Jan-14 20:15:30

We're starting the long process of working out where to send DS to school.
The Dept for Education has league table results showing % pupils who have achieved KS4 and then another result for achieving level 4B or above in reading and maths or L4 i writing,

What does this mean practically? How important is it compared to the general achievement result?

Thanks in advance for answers

Littlefish Fri 31-Jan-14 20:19:04

Level 4B is the national expectation at year 6.

purpleroses Fri 31-Jan-14 20:21:46

Level 4 splits into 3 parts - 4a is the highest, then 4b, then 4c.

They used to just publish the % who got any kind of level 4 (or above) but now they publish the % who get 4b or above.

spanieleyes Fri 31-Jan-14 20:22:34

Level 4b is intended to be the new "secondary ready" measure that all children are expected to reach- although the rumour is that the requirements needed for a 4b are going to increase ( ie it will be increasingly harder to achieve!)

Littlefish Fri 31-Jan-14 20:38:33

Spaniel - I was told the same about level 2b by our school improvement adviser. In the future, although it will still be called 2b, the descriptors will look more like the current 2a descriptors.

abadoo Sat 01-Feb-14 08:52:03

Thanks everyone, very helpful

mrz Sat 01-Feb-14 09:20:04

The Government have announced that levels will be scrapped from Sept as they are meaningless hmm

Retropear Sat 01-Feb-14 09:26:38

That'll be great for those of us in schools with poorer results.How exactly will we be able to keep on top of things and check our kids are where they should be or achieving their full potential?

hootloop Sat 01-Feb-14 09:31:37

Do we know what we will replace them or how assessment will work mrz? (I am a SAHM who was a teacher but will need to return to work in September, have been out 8 years)

spanieleyes Sat 01-Feb-14 09:34:11

But year 6 children are still sitting SATS tests, certainly as far as we know into 2015( probably beyond), so they must be intending some sort of levels to continue. Goodness knows what though!

mrz Sat 01-Feb-14 09:38:26

According to that well known reliable source (The Mail) percentile scores 80-130

mrz Sat 01-Feb-14 09:39:32

New tests from 2016 spanieleyes - examples available in the summer

mrz Sat 01-Feb-14 09:41:43

We accepted the Expert Panel's recommendation to remove level descriptors from the national curriculum and not replace them. This is because we agreed that levels have become too abstract, do not give parents meaningful information about how their child is performing, nor give pupils information about how to improve. Levels have detracted from real feedback and schools have found it difficult to apply them consistently –
the criteria are ambiguous and require teachers to decide how to weight a huge array of factors. Beyond the tests at key stage 2 and GCSEs at key
stage 4, it will be for schools to decide how they assess pupils’ progress.
The first new key stage 2 tests in English, mathematics and science, based on the new national curriculum, will be sat by pupils for the first time in the summer of 2016. Sample questions will be available from summer 2014, and sample full tests will be available from the summer of 2015.
Primary academies and free schools will also take the new key stage 2 tests. "

MirandaWest Sat 01-Feb-14 09:43:35

DS is in year 5 so will be doing SATS in summer 2015. If levels are being scrapped from September I wonder how that will work, if new SATS don't happen until 2016?

mrz Sat 01-Feb-14 10:09:04

Retropear Sat 01-Feb-14 10:49:18

I think year 5 are doing the old Sats according to our school.

What about this years year 4?In particular maths.Are they going to be tested the new stuff/old stuff or both.

Retropear Sat 01-Feb-14 10:52:42

Oops just read Mrz's link,it's all in there.

hootloop Sat 01-Feb-14 11:41:17

Hmm up to schools. I am dreading going back, I'm not going to have a clue.

MirandaWest Sat 01-Feb-14 13:14:19

That makes sense - so those who are in the final year of a key stage this year or next will be doing old national curriculum in core subjects. Still wondering about levels though.

Could be interesting for mixed year 1/2 classes next year I suppose.

sausymum Sat 01-Feb-14 16:02:26

Hi there,wow my ds is in year 4 and all his levels are 4c or higher and im taking him out of his school because he is unhappy there (health issues) do hope im right lol.
The school work in mixed classes based on ability but i think the levels are off putting, for all i know he could start new school being behind even though he has been assessed at these levels.
Assessments are what levels are based on if child is having a bad day thats it they stuck with results all year i dont know much about levels etc but surely it should be based on ability each day not one test?

spanieleyes Sat 01-Feb-14 16:13:18

End of year levels are summative assessments, a brief "snapshot" of what a child can do on a particular day, at a particular time when measured in a particular way. Teachers use a whole host of other assessment measures on an ongoing, daily basis.

PastSellByDate Tue 04-Feb-14 13:56:34

Hi abadoo:

MN has an explanation of National Curriculum Levels (NC Levels - like NC L4b) and how your child should notionally progress through them here:

In England primary schools are divided between INFANTS and JUNIORS - sometimes these are separate schools entirely:

INFANTS = Reception (sometimes Year R) and Key Stage 1 (KS1: Years 1 & 2)

Year R (ages 4/5) is under the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) - info here:

KS1 (year 1 - age 5/6 and year 2 age 6/7) are under the national curriculum. If your child is starting Sept 2014 - they will be taught under the new national curriculum - info here: - if you scroll down a bit you can see the programme of study for different areas of the curriculum - these documents break down what is taught by individual years in KS1 & KS2 (years 3 - 6).

JUNIORS: Key Stage 2 (KS2 = Years 3 - 6 - so Y3 is ages 7/8, Y4 is 8/9, Y5 is 9/10 and Y6 is 10/11).

Given your DC will start Reception next school year (SEPT 2014) this will also be under the new national curriculum (see link above).

The floor standard (the bare minimum the government expects) is that 65% of all primary pupils in a school will leave Y6 with a score of NC Level 4 combined in both English & Maths on KS2 SATs (taken traditionally over one week in May). Notionally to be 'secondary ready' the government feels a child must be solidly working within NC Level 4 - which is described as NC L4b.

As explained above by purpleroses - the NC Levels are divided into 3 basic sub-levels:

starting c - then b - then a.

So for example a child working NC L3c is working just into NC Level 3, but not strongly working at Level 3.

A child working NC Level 3b is working well within NC Level 3 - but possibly not showing much sign of working beyond NC Level 3.

A child working NC Level 3a is working well within NC Level 3, possibly finding much of the work at this level fairly easy to cope with and showing signs of working toward NC Level 4.

Going back to your original question: What does this mean practically? How important is it compared to the general achievement result?

I suppose the way of thinking about it is the general achievement result will be the combined results for KS2 SATs (so Y6 SATs) in English (Reading & Writing) & Maths - so this is asking whether overall the kids are working at Level 4+ (i.e. notionally able to engage with secondary curriculum from the start). Now they should also show the results in terms of NC L5+ for last year's scores (2013).

So if in theory 50% of the school score NC L5+ and 90% score NC L4+ - that's telling you that 9 out of 10 kids at this school achieve the expected target (government floor target of NC L4) in the combined results of writing/ reading/ maths and 5 out of 10 pupils exceed that.

Individual subject scores: Spelling, punctuation and grammar (SPAG)

will of course vary for each child - as children may have particular strengths in certain areas or more interest for one thing than another - so in theory a child could have scores that might range of NC L3 in Maths (a child who doesn't like/ get numbers) to solid NC L5s in science & English subjects. Overall they would fail to make the government floor standard because of the NC L3 in Maths.

I think the way to judge a school is to see if consistently over a number of years (say 5-6) they're getting a large proportion of pupils (70%+) to NC L4 or better in combined English/ Maths results. - You can find this info in two places: For 2012 & 2013 SATs (so may of those years): - just enter school name or postcode. For data prior to 2012 - on the left hand side of this webpage you'll see Performance Tables 1994-2012 - select this and you can search the school's results going back a number of years.

I think seeing a nice, steady and consistent result or one that is improving year on year says a lot about the stability of delivery of a strong curriculum that's well taught. If there are blips (so a particularly bad year) what you want to see is whether this is a one-off - not the start of years of decline (as in our school which pre 2006 always had 90% L4 on KS2 SATs and then dipped to 80%, then 70% and recently 60% - the trend is strongly and steadily downward here I fear).


Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: