Education creates greater opportunity for economic and social choice. The educational opportunities of children and young people are affected by a range of factors including poor levels of self-esteem and physical activity. Future life chances and health are directly linked to educational attainment.

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Last updated: 2013-06-21 10:37:00
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1. What are the key issues?

There are some significant challenges for schools and the School Improvement Service:

  • Raising the floor standards
  • New Ofsted Inspection Framework
  • Changes to funding (New Funding Reform)
  • Curriculum and qualifications changes
  • The move to Academy status for some schools.

A disproportionately high percentage of young people who live in Redcar & Cleveland travel to out-of-borough Further Education provision to study at Entry Level/Level 1.  Of those young people with a declared learning difficulty and/or disability, 58% were travelling out-of-borough, compared with 45% of those without such a declaration.

There is a significantly high number of young people who are  not in education, employment or training (NEET).  Vulnerable young people form 59% of the NEET cohort.

There is low participation of 17- and 18-year-olds in learning.  The withdrawal of the Education Maintenance Allowance has had an impact on participation and retention in learning.

The number of female residents starting apprenticeships is reducing.


Last updated: 21/06/13

2. What commissioning priorities are recommended?

Plan for the expansion of the government’s academies programme
and its implications for local authority services.

Prepare schools for the new Ofsted inspection framework

Work with schools to deliver Department for Education Funding Reform

Commission more innovative approaches to learning
which will better engage with those vulnerable and hard to engage young people.

Develop more opportunities for apprenticeships and work experience placements
for vulnerable learners throughout Redcar & Cleveland Council.

Ensure all key partners are signed up to the Raising the Participation Age strategy and action plan

Help all education and training providers in Redcar & Cleveland to maintain their Ofsted inspection grade of ‘Good’ and to strive towards outstanding

Ensure that the 14-19 Partnership delivers its strategy and action plan

Make more effective use of mainstream funds
by linking and pooling resources.


Last updated: 21/06/13

3. Who is at risk and why?

Adults with few or no qualifications are at a disadvantage when it comes to returning to and remaining in the labour market.

Adults in the criminal justice system are more likely to have a poor school history and poor educational attainment.

Boys typically achieve less than girls at all stages of their learning.

Socioeconomic status
Children from poorer backgrounds are much less likely to experience a good home learning environment, which is very important for children’s early educational development.

The achievement gap for poorer children widens particularly quickly during primary school, being affected by low parental aspirations; how far parents and children believe their own actions can affect their lives; and behavioural problems.

The pattern of under-achievement is harder to reverse by the teenage years, but disadvantage and poor school results continue to be linked, including through low expectations for higher education; a lack of material resources; engagement in anti-social behaviour; and young people’s belief in their own ability at school.
Research shows that cognitive skills are passed from parents to children.

Children from black or minority ethnic groups may require additional support to improve their English language skills to enable them to engage with areas of the curriculum adequately.

Special educational needs
A physical or learning disability might require additional support, either on a group or individual basis, to ensure attendance at school.

Looked after children
Chaotic and traumatic life experiences can mean that children in the care of the local authority do not achieve key learning outcomes within the same timescale as their peers.

Nearly half (49%) of male, sentenced prisoners were excluded from school compared with 2% in the general population.  More than half of male prisoners (52%) and 71% of female prisoners have no qualifications, with 65% having numeracy ability less than an average 11-year-old and 48% with a reading ability less than an 11-year-old.  One in ten prisoners has a learning disability.  At any one time, only one-third of prisoners have access to education (Natale, 2010).  See the offenders topic for further details.


Last updated: 21/06/13

4. What is the level of need in the population?

Key issues

  • Attainment at age 11 is similar to England, but by age 16 tends to be below England.
  • Secondary school attendance is lower than England.
  • Too many young people aged 16 to 18 years are not in education, employment or training.

Primary schools
Primary schools in Redcar & Cleveland have levels of attainment similar to England.  In 2012, 81% of children achieved level four or above at key stage 2, compared with 79% in England.  In a group of eleven statistical neighbours, Redcar & Cleveland ranked 7th for level 4 or above in English and 6th for level 4 or above in maths.
Level 4+ attainment at key stage 4, Tees, 2008 to 2012

Of the 44 primary schools in Redcar & Cleveland, in 2011, there were 17 (39%) where not enough children made 2 levels of progress between key stage 1 and key stage 2 for English, and 12 schools (27%) where not enough progress was made in maths.

Attendance at primary schools in Redcar & Cleveland is similar to or better than England.  In Redcar & Cleveland, 2.6% of children were persistently absent from primary school, missing more than 15% of their education, compared with 3.4% nationally.  The five primary schools with the highest rates of persistent absence are all in the Greater Eston area.  Overall absence in Redcar & Cleveland was 4.2% of half-days missed, compared with 4.4% in England.  The seven primary schools with the highest rates of overall absence are all in the Greater Eston area.

In Redcar & Cleveland in 2011, two primary schools (4%) were below the floor standard, the lowest rate in the North East.  Nationally 10% of primary schools were below the floor standard.

Primary schools and floor satndards, Redcar & Cleveland, 2011

Secondary schools
Secondary schools in Redcar & Cleveland have levels of attainment below or similar to England.  In 2012, 55.0% of children achieved 5 or more GCSEs grade A*-C including English and maths, compared with 59.4% in England.  The gap between Redcar & Cleveland and England narrowed from 2005 to 2010, but has since widened. In 2012, only one academy failed to meet the floor standard for this measure of 35%.  In comparison to statistical neighbours, Redcar & Cleveland had 2.3% more pupils getting 5 or more A*-C GCSEs than it closest neighbour (Doncaster).  Within the group of eleven authorities, Redcar & Cleveland ranked 8th for this measure.

Chilren with 5+ GCSEs A*-C grades, Tees, 2005 to 2012

Of eleven secondary schools in Redcar & Cleveland, in 2012, there were 5 where not enough children made 3 levels of progress between key stage 2 and key stage 4 for English, and 8 schools where not enough progress was made in maths.

Overall absence (both authorised and unauthorised) from secondary schools in Redcar & Cleveland is above the England rate.  A higher proportion of children than nationally are persistently absent, with almost eight percent of secondary school pupils in Redcar & Cleveland missing over 15% of their education.  In 2010/11, Redcar & Cleveland had a rate of permanent exclusions similar to national levels (16 pupils in Redcar & Cleveland).  Rates of fixed-term exclusion are higher than national averages (11.0% and 8.4%, respectively).

Absence from school, Tees, 2012

For secondary schools, Redcar & Cleveland has a higher rate of pupils with special educational needs compared with England, and the highest rate in Tees.  It has the lowest rate of pupils who don’t have English as a first language in Tees, and less than one-tenth of the England average. Eligibility for free school meals is slightly above the England rate.

Special educational needs, English as a second language and free school meals, Tees, 2012

Only one school (Freebrough Academy) fell below the government floor standard in 2011. However, only two secondary schools (Nunthorpe and Huntcliff) have no identified risk element for rates of progress in English or maths.

Floor standards, Redcar & Cleveland secondary schools, 2011

Improving under-performing schools
The local authority submitted its ‘Improving under-performing schools plan’ to the Secretary of State in April 2011. This plan identifies schools at risk using local intelligence, performance data and Ofsted inspection information to ensure that schools are identified early to avoid failing an Ofsted inspection.

Ofsted judgements, Tees Valley primary schools, 2012

Ofsted judgements, Tees Valley secondary schools, 2012

In addition, there are seven primary schools in which  fewer than  60% of the pupils gained Level 4 and above in English and maths combined.  Six of these schools are in the most deprived wards in Redcar & Cleveland.

Young people not in education, employment and training (NEET)
Redcar & Cleveland has a high proportion of young people not in education, employment and training.  The rate is higher than the England average, the North East and Gateshead (a comparable area).  Fourteen out of twenty-two wards in Redcar & Cleveland have a NEET rate higher than the national average, the worst being Grangetown with a rate of over 19%.  The number of young people who are NEET has increased from 479 (9.7%) in October 2010 to 644 (12.7%) in October 2011.  The following chart shows the average NEET rate for November 2011 to January 2012, when 560 young people were identified as NEET.
NEETs aged 16-18, Redcar & Cleveland, 2012

Further education
There are fewer learners from the deprived areas in Redcar & Cleveland attending further education (FE) courses at local colleges. However, at the same time, increasing numbers have been drawn into new school sixth-form provision which has supported a net gain in participation in Eston and Ormesby.  This has not totally mitigated a drop in overall numbers in the Greater Eston areas of Grangetown, Normanby, Teesville and South Bank. In Redcar & Cleveland, the number of learners starting an apprenticeship increased in 2010/11.

In terms of attainment, the proportion of Redcar and Cleveland learners reaching a full Level 2 qualification (equivalent to 5 GCSEs at A*-C) at age 19 increased from 73% in 2008 to 78% in 2010.  The proportion of young people achieving a full Level 3 (equivalent to 2 A levels) has also increased from 42% to 50%.  The Level 2 figure is similar to the North East and England whilst the Level 3 figure is above that of the North East as a whole and only 1% lower than the national figure.

For those in  apprenticeships, between 2009/10 and 2010/11, success rates overall for Redcar & Cleveland  learners increased from 74% to 76% and were significantly better than those for the North East and England (66% and 70% respectively).

Success rates at Level 3 increased to over 80% for young people in Further Education in Redcar & Cleveland compared to 77% for learners travelling to Middlesbrough.

In respect of higher education, the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills shows that 32% of young people who attended school in Redcar & Cleveland had entered Higher Education by the age of 19 in 2008/09, just one percent less than the rate for England.

Working age population
About one in seven people in the working age population in Redcar & Cleveland have no qualifications.  This is a higher rate than Gateshead (a similar area), the North East and England.
Working age population with no qualifications, Tees, 2011


Last updated: 11/01/16

5. What services are currently provided?

In Redcar & Cleveland there are:

  • 44 Primary schools
  • 11 Secondary schools
  • 3 Special schools
  • 2 Further education colleges.

Redcar & Cleveland Council provides a School Improvement Service within the Education & Skills Department. The core purpose of the School Improvement Service is to ensure that all children and young people attending schools receive high quality teaching and learning. In partnership with schools, the service will raise standards and improve the effectiveness of schools and other settings. It operates a comprehensive school effectiveness consultancy and advisory service to all schools and academies in Redcar & Cleveland, providing support and training in ways that best suit individual schools including: monitoring, challenge, support and intervention work mainly through the work of School Improvement Officers.  The service also provides:

  • Intervention and intensive support in schools causing concern;
  • Specialist early years services focused on standards, quality and training including the use of the Literacy Centre and Inspire2Learn;
  • A range of guidance, training and support for school leaders and other school staff.

The Education Funding Agency (EFA) provides funding to Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council for:

  • Young apprenticeships
  • Diplomas
  • Foundation learning
  • 16-18 learner responsive monies for school sixth-forms
  • 16-19 Student bursary
  • Astra Zeneca funds to support Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).

The Skills Funding Agency provides funding to Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council for:

  • Elite ESF-funded NEET project
  • Adult Learning Service
  • Apprenticeship Programme.

Services provided by the 14-19 Education and Skills Team:

  • The Adult Learning Service
  • Connexions
  • Routes to Employment.


Last updated: 21/06/13

6. What is the projected level of need?

Content to be developed.

Last updated: 21/06/13

7. What needs might be unmet?

Intervention is needed to secure improvement where schools are at risk of falling significantly below government targets.

In terms of participation in learning post-16, the rate for 16-year-olds is at 92.1%, the lowest in Tees Valley. The participation rate for 17-year-olds, at 85.8%, is the lowest in Tees Valley.  The participation rate for 18-year-olds, at 71.6%, is again the lowest in Tees Valley.

In Redcar & Cleveland, in 2011, there were 12,100 working age people (14.2%) with no qualifications, compared with 10.4% nationally.

In 2012, 18 pupils left school at age 16 with no qualifications.

Last updated: 21/06/13

8. What evidence is there for effective intervention?

The Education Endowment Foundation Toolkit (Higgins el at, 2013) is an accessible summary of educational research which provides guidance for teachers and schools on how to use their resources to improve the attainment of disadvantaged pupils.  The Toolkit covers 30 topics, each summarised in terms of their average impact on attainment, the strength of the evidence supporting them and their cost.  It highlights feedback; meta-cognition and self-regulation; peer tutoring; and early years intervention as the top four evidence-based interventions.

The Centre for Excellence and Outcomes in Children and Young People's Services (C4EO) provides a range of products and support services to improve outcomes.  Excellence in local practice, combined with national research and data about 'what works' is being gathered in one place.

Ofsted provides Our expert knowledge, a resource that brings together expert knowledge.  It includes survey reports and examples of good practice by both key stage and subject.


Last updated: 21/06/13

9. What do people say?

Schools, colleges and Connexions have suggested:

  • Young people and their parents/carers are concerned that there is a lack of specialist provision in Redcar & Cleveland within the further education sector for young people with learning difficulties and/or disabilities.
  • Young people are unable to enter apprenticeships because of the lack of opportunities offered by employers and the requirement to have “employed status”
  • Young people are concerned about the withdrawal of the Education Maintenance Allowance.


Last updated: 21/06/13

10. What additional needs assessment is required?

Annual performance of all schools affects the level of intervention and support needed. The local authority has a statutory duty to intervene in schools deemed at risk.  There is continuous need to assess school performance.


Last updated: 21/06/13

Key contact

Name: Diane Hunt

Job title: Principal Manager 14-19


Phone number: 01642 771500



Local strategies and plans

Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council (2012). Our Plan 2012-2017.


National strategies and plans

Department for Education (2010). The Importance of Teaching - The Schools White Paper 2010.

Department for Education (2012).  Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage 2012.

Department for Education (2012).  Development Matters in the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS).

Department for Education (2012).  Support and aspiration: A new approach to special educational needs and disability - Progress and next steps.


Other references

Allen, G (2011). Early Intervention: The Next Steps - An Independent Report to Her Majesty’s Government.

Centre for Excellence and Outcomes in Children and Young People's Services (C4EO).

Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG, 2011). English indices of deprivation 2010.

Department for Education (2012d). School performance tables for Redcar & Cleveland.

End Child Poverty (2012). Child Poverty Map of the UK, 2012.

Higgins, S., Katsipataki, M., Kokotsaki, D., et al. (2013). The Sutton Trust-Education Endowment Foundation Teaching and Learning Toolkit.

Natale, L (2010). CIVITAS Factsheet – Education in prisons.

The Social Exclusion Unit (2002). Reducing reoffending by ex-prisoners.