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UPDATED: Leeds schools perform less well – but Meanwood Church of England Primary comes top of the league

High-performing Meanwood Church of England Primary School, Leeds

By Oliver Lines
Leeds schools dropped 10 places in the latest primary school league tables, with just 48 per cent of pupils reaching the expected standard in the three Rs.
But Meanwood Church of England Primary was the best performing school in Leeds, with 94 per cent of pupils hitting the standard, something which headteacher Helen Sanderson was very proud of.
“My Year Six teacher is absolutely outstanding,” she said.
“The children were incredibly well taught and we made sure that we had the breadth of work that they needed to have in there.
“Their writing portfolios were outstanding.”
Leeds ranked 133 out of 152 schools this year, down from 123 in 2015, while the Bradford district rose two places, to 141st from 143rd.
Nationally, 11-year-olds achieving the standard fell to  53 per cent, although tougher tests meant schools struggled to adapt.
Meanwood head teacher Mrs Sanderson said caring for every child was important, which in turn leads to them doing well in school.
“There’s a lot of support for the children and we make a lot of good progress with the least able children.
“Everything we do is pitched at the higher level and there is a theory that says if you do that, it will pull up the children exponentially,” she said.
“We do pitch everything higher and our targets are set for that as well, so the amount of progress we expect our children to make.”
Harder tests being introduced meant a lot of schools had failed to reach the national average, and although her school was able to score highly in the league table, Mrs Sanderson had sympathy for schools that fell short.
“I think a lot of schools didn’t really know what they were dealing with since the government changed it all, and of course there was the fiasco of the spelling and grammar paper being leaked online.
“It was all a nightmare to deal with but hopefully this year it’ll calm down because there are an awful lot of really good schools in Leeds.
 “I think it’ll be better next year but I know, because I work in multiple schools, that there’s a lot of hard work being done in Leeds.”

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