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New information on the performance of schools in Wales which shows a fall in the number of schools in need of the most support, has been welcomed by Education Secretary Kirsty Williams.

First published:
31 January 2017
Last updated:

This was published under the 2016 to 2021 administration of the Welsh Government

Published today, the National Categorisation System has been introduced in 2014 to help identify schools in need of support to improve. Schools are placed into one of four colour-coded support categories to demonstrate the level of support they need.

Each school’s category is determined by a range of factors including its performance data and capacity to improve in areas such as leadership and teaching and learning. Local authorities and their regional consortia play a central role in the process which triggers a bespoke package of challenge and support in each school.

Under the system there are four categories - green, yellow, amber and red. Schools in the green category are deemed to be in need of the least support while schools in the red category are those identified as needing the most support.

This year’s results show that there are fewer schools in Wales in need of the highest levels of support when compared to last year. Similarly, there are more schools categorised as needing lower levels of support. In summary:

  • the proportion of green schools – those needing less support – has increased by 5 percentage points in the primary sector and 7 percentage points in the secondary sector.
  • the proportion of red schools – those identified as needing most support – has reduced by 1 percentage point in the primary sector and 2 percentage points in the secondary sector.
  • 41 per cent of special schools have been categorised as green, and needing less support, with only 8 per cent being categorised as red and in need of most support.

Cabinet Secretary for Education Kirsty Williams said:

“This system is not about grading, labelling or creating crude league tables but about providing support and encouraging improvement in our schools. It is about putting schools into a position that helps them to identify areas they can strengthen and what they need to do achieve further improvements.

“The figures we have published today show that 84.4% of primary and 64.6% of secondary schools are now in the green and yellow categories. This increase is to be welcomed, as these schools will have a key role to play in supporting other schools, sharing their skills, expertise, and good practice. In this way they will be making a vital contribution to our national mission of driving forward improvements in Welsh schools and moving us towards a self-improving system.”

The categorisation for all schools is available on the My Local School website (external link) and the Welsh Government education pages.