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Ofsted brings together South East leaders to tackle attainment gap

07 Mar 2014

School leaders and senior council officials convened at the Ofsted South East Leadership Conference today to discuss how to close the attainment gap between wealthier and poorer pupils.

Overall, pupils in the South East do well. The proportions of pupils who reach the expected benchmark for assessments, tests and exams at the ages of seven, 11 and 16 exceed the national figures. However, the attainment gap between pupils who are eligible for free school meals and their wealthier peers is the most acute in England.

Some South East schools have bucked the trend, and in areas like Windsor and Maidenhead the achievement of poorer pupils has improved considerably. But in 2012 five areas – Wokingham, Mole Valley, Wealden, Brighton Pavilion and New Forest West – did not have a single secondary school where the gap between the attainment of 16 year olds entitled to free school meals and their more affluent peers was above the national average. 

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