Boys lag behind girls after two school years

Boys are lagging behind girls in the basics after just two years at school, official figures showed today.









Fewer seven-year-old boys reached the standard expected of them in reading, writing, maths and science than girls of the same age.



The gap was widest in writing, with one in four boys (24.5%) failing to achieve Level 2 compared to around one in seven (13.4%) of girls - a gap of 11.1 percentage points.



In reading, 88.7% of girls achieved Level 2 - the standard expected of seven-year-olds - compared to 80.9% of boys - a gap of 7.8 percentage points.



There was a 3.3 percentage point gap in favour of girls in science, with 90.4% achieving the required level compared to 87.1% of boys.



The gap was smallest in maths, with girls ahead by three percentage points (90.8% of girls reaching Level 2 compared to 87.8% of boys).



Each of the gaps has closed marginally since last year, the Department for Education (DfE) figures show.



Today's statistics, which are for England only, are based on teachers' assessments of pupils at the end of Key Stage 1.



They are broken down by gender, ethnicity and background.



They reveal a wide gulf remains between the attainment of the poorest pupils and their richer classmates.



Schools minister Nick Gibb said it was a "real concern" that poorer children are failing to meet the expected standard in reading and writing.



In writing, a third of pupils (33.6%) eligible for Free School Meals (FSM) - a key measure of poverty - failed to reach Level 2, compared to one in six (15.5%) of other students - a gap of 18.1 percentage points.



In reading, 71.7% of FSM children achieved Level 2, compared to 87.9% of non-FSM students - a gap of 16.2 percentage points.



The figures for maths show that 79.7% of FSM pupils reached Level 2 this summer, compared to 91.7% of other pupils, while in science the figures were 78.7% and 91.3% respectively.



Mr Gibb said: "Though there is a slight increase in the proportion of seven-year-olds reaching the expected level in reading, it is a real concern that almost a third of all Key Stage 1 children receiving free school meals are failing to achieve the standard in reading and writing. Additionally, over a third of boys receiving free school meals fail to make the grade in reading and writing.



"Getting the fundamentals right is crucial to a child's success in secondary education and throughout their adult life, and the Government is committed to getting all children reading and writing to a high standard."



Ministers are promoting the use of systematic synthetic phonics in primary schools and introducing a reading test for six-year-olds to identify those who need help, Mr Gibb said.

News
people
News
people
Arts and Entertainment
Armstrong, left, and Bain's writing credits include Peep Show, Fresh Meat, and The Old Guys
TVThe pair have presented their view of 21st-century foibles in shows such as Peep Show and Fresh Meat
Arts and Entertainment
Keys to success: Andrew and Julian Lloyd Webber
arts + entsMrs Bach had too many kids to write the great man's music, says Julian Lloyd Webber
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Sport
footballMan City manager would have loved to have signed Argentine
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Hand out press photograph/film still from the movie Mad Max Fury Road (Downloaded from the Warner Bro's media site/Jasin Boland/© 2014 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.)
films'You have to try everything and it’s all a process of elimination, but ultimately you find your path'
Arts and Entertainment
Imelda Staunton as Dolores Umbridge in the Harry Potter films
books

New essay by JK Rowling went live on Pottermore site on Friday

News
Russia Today’s new UK channel began broadcasting yesterday. Discussions so far have included why Britons see Russia as ‘the bad guy’
news

New UK station Russia Today gives a very bizarre view of Britain

Arts and Entertainment
Keira Knightley and Benedict Cumberbatch at the premiere of The Imitation Game at the BFI London Film Festival
filmsKeira Knightley tried to miss The Imitation Game premiere to watch Bake Off
News
i100
Sport
Enner Valencia
footballStriker has enjoyed a rapid rise to fame via winning the title with ‘The Blue Ballet’ in Ecuador
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Education

Humanities Teacher - Greater Manchester

£22800 - £33600 per annum: Randstad Education Manchester Secondary: The JobAt ...

Design Technology Teacher

£22800 - £33600 per annum: Randstad Education Manchester Secondary: Calling al...

Foundation Teacher

£100 - £125 per day: Randstad Education Chelmsford: EYFS Teachers - East Essex...

English Teacher- Manchester

£19200 - £33600 per annum: Randstad Education Manchester Secondary: Are you a ...

Day In a Page

Bryan Adams' heartstopping images of wounded British soldiers to go on show at Somerset House

Bryan Adams' images of wounded soldiers

Taken over the course of four years, Adams' portraits are an astonishing document of the aftermath of war
The drugs revolution starts now as MPs agree its high time for change

The drugs revolution starts now as MPs agree its high time for change

Commons debate highlights growing cross-party consensus on softening UK drugs legislation, unchanged for 43 years
The camera is turned on tabloid editors in Richard Peppiatt's 'One Rogue Reporter'

Gotcha! The camera is turned on tabloid editors

Hugh Grant says Richard Peppiatt's 'One Rogue Reporter' documentary will highlight issues raised by Leveson
Fall of the Berlin Wall: It was thanks to Mikhail Gorbachev that this symbol of division fell

Fall of the Berlin Wall

It was thanks to Gorbachev that this symbol of division fell
Halloween 2014: What makes Ouija boards, demon dolls, and evil clowns so frightening?

What makes ouija boards and demon dolls scary?

Ouija boards, demon dolls, evil children and clowns are all classic tropes of horror, and this year’s Halloween releases feature them all. What makes them so frightening, decade after decade?
A safari in modern Britain: Rose Rouse reveals how her four-year tour of Harlesden taught her as much about the UK as it did about NW10

Rose Rouse's safari in modern Britain

Rouse decided to walk and talk with as many different people as possible in her neighbourhood of Harlesden and her experiences have been published in a new book
Welcome to my world of no smell and odd tastes: How a bike accident left one woman living with unwanted food mash-ups

'My world of no smell and odd tastes'

A head injury from a bicycle accident had the surprising effect of robbing Nell Frizzell of two of her senses

Matt Parker is proud of his square roots

The "stand-up mathematician" is using comedy nights to preach maths to big audiences
Paul Scholes column: Beating Manchester City is vital part of life at Manchester United. This is first major test for Luke Shaw, Angel Di Maria and Radamel Falcao – it’s not a game to lose

Paul Scholes column

Beating City is vital part of life at United. This is first major test for Shaw, Di Maria and Falcao – it’s not a game to lose
Frank Warren: Call me an old git, but I just can't see that there's a place for women’s boxing

Frank Warren column

Call me an old git, but I just can't see that there's a place for women’s boxing
Adrian Heath interview: Former Everton striker prepares his Orlando City side for the MLS - and having Kaka in the dressing room

Adrian Heath's American dream...

Former Everton striker prepares his Orlando City side for the MLS - and having Kaka in the dressing room
Simon Hart: Manchester City will rise again but they need to change their attitude

Manchester City will rise again but they need to change their attitude

Manuel Pellegrini’s side are too good to fail and derby allows them to start again, says Simon Hart
Isis in Syria: A general reveals the lack of communication with the US - and his country's awkward relationship with their allies-by-default

A Syrian general speaks

A senior officer of Bashar al-Assad’s regime talks to Robert Fisk about his army’s brutal struggle with Isis, in a dirty war whose challenges include widespread atrocities