Latest Public Sector News


11-year-olds to sit national grammar test from 2013

A national grammar and spelling test will be introduced in primary schools to improve pupils’ literacy levels, the Department for Education has confirmed.

The exam would form part of the Sats tests and will cover vocabulary, spelling, grammar and punctuation. Pupils will be expected to recognise the difference between formal and non-standard English, identify the grammatical functions of words, use punctuation correctly and demonstrate “fluent, joined-up and legible” handwriting.

To be introduced next year, the exam will assess pupils using a series of short-answer questions. One test will be sat by the majority of pupils, with the brightest 11-year-olds expected to take an advanced exam, featuring topics normally taught in the first three years of secondary school.

Yesterday the education secretary Michael Gove said: “I believe that we can only overcome the corrosive culture of low expectations which still persists in too many of our schools by setting a higher bar, with harder exams for all students. It is only when we have a system where we expect for all children what we would expect for our own that we have a dynamic which drives up attainment for the very poorest.”

A spokesman for the department said: “Too little attention has been given to spelling, punctuation and grammar in exams over the past decade. All children should be able to communicate and write effectively which is why we will assess their progress in these areas.”

The Government is also introducing a basic reading test for all six year-olds.

Tell us what you think – have your say below, or email us directly at [email protected]


There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

public sector executive tv

more videos >

last word

Prevention: Investing for the future

Prevention: Investing for the future

Rob Whiteman, CEO at the Chartered Institute of Public Finance (CIPFA), discusses the benefits of long-term preventative investment. Rising demand, reducing resource – this has been the r more > more last word articles >

public sector focus

View all News


Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

21/06/2019Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

Taking time to say thank you is one of the hidden pillars of a society. Bei... more >
How community-led initiatives can help save the housing shortage

19/06/2019How community-led initiatives can help save the housing shortage

Tom Chance, director at the National Community Land Trust Network, argues t... more >


Artificial intelligence: the devil is in the data

17/12/2018Artificial intelligence: the devil is in the data

It’s no secret that the public sector and its service providers need ... more >