The Educational Publishers Council (EPC) has released a report which demonstrates the link between professionally-published teaching resources and improved results at Key Stage 2 (KS2) and Key Stage 4 (KS4).
The four-year study showed that primary schools that spent more on educational books were a third more likely to achieve better results between Key Stage 1 (KS1) and KS2 than those schools with a below-average spending on educational books.
Now, many will say that this is stating the obvious, but it is important to remember that education spending is under pressure following the Comprehensive Spending Review. Although education ‘won’ with the review, savings in schools will still have to be made.
This is particularly worrying for those primary schools which currently spend below the average of £2,100 per year over the last four years. In the last four years 80.7% of KS2 results have been static or seen a reduction when compared to KS1 results.
Looking closely at the data, the percentage of KS2 results that remain static compared to KS1 remains consistently around 40.1%, regardless of spending on professionally-published resources. However, with a below-average spending on resources, 40.8% percent of pupils performed worse at KS2 that KS1, compared to 32.3% of those at schools with above average spending. Similarly, those with above-average spending saw more than a quarter of pupils (25.7%) improve their attainment levels KS1-KS2, whilst this drops to less than one in five (19.3%) when schools spend less than average on educational resources.
So what does this mean?
Books retain their importance in the classroom, but with budgets slashed, we are set to see Key Stage 2 results decrease if the book purchasing budgets are cut.