Statutory assessment and moderation

Statutory assessment and moderation

Changes to KS1 assessments from the 2023/2024 test cycle

Following the 2017 consultation on primary assessment, end of KS1 assessments will no longer be statutory from the academic year 2023 to 2024 onwards. The necessary legislative amendments have now been made and will take effect from 1 September 2023.

The following KS1 assessments will become optional:

  • teacher assessment judgements in English reading, English writing, mathematics and science
  • tests in English reading and mathematics (the English grammar, punctuation and spelling test will also remain optional)
  • where relevant, using the pre-key stage standards or engagement model

There will be no legal requirement for schools or local authorities to report KS1 teacher assessment data. There will also be no requirement to report results from end of KS1 assessments to parents. As with other years in which there are no statutory assessments, there will still be a requirement for headteachers to provide an annual report to parents or carers about a pupil’s general progress in year 2.

The reception baseline assessment (RBA) will replace the end of KS1 assessments as the baseline for cohort level primary progress measures. This will happen when the first cohort with a statutory RBA reaches the end of key stage 2 (KS2) in 2028.

The phonics screening check will remain statutory. While there will be no legal duty on local authorities to moderate KS1 teacher assessment, they will still be required to monitor the phonics screening check.

The existing end of KS1 teacher assessment frameworks will continue to be available on GOV.UK for schools who wish to use them optionally as part of their ongoing assessment of children. STA will also continue to develop and supply materials for the optional, non-statutory end of KS1 tests in:

  • English reading
  • English grammar, punctuation and spelling
  • mathematics

STA will publish formal guidance on accessing and administering the optional tests, for those who want to use them, in autumn 2023.
The optional tests will be developed to the same specifications as previous KS1 papers, so that they may continue to inform classroom practice and help schools understand where pupils need additional support as they transition into KS2.

They may also provide helpful information when reporting to parents. To enable STA to do this, there will continue to be a legal requirement for a small number of selected schools to participate in the trialling of the tests each spring. Trialling does not test the pupils’ abilities and is not a test of the school; it only tests the materials in development.

STA will continue to take a proportionate approach to trialling; testing the optional assessment materials will not create any additional work for schools compared to the current requirements. For more information, refer to our page about statutory participation in trialling of national curriculum assessments.

KS2 Assessment and moderation

Local authorities continue to have a statutory duty to moderate the teacher assessment judgements each year for a minimum sample of 25% of schools in key stage 2.

At key stage 2 moderation takes place for writing judgements only.

Local authorities also have a statutory duty to monitor the administration of key stage 2 (KS2) national curriculum tests and the phonics screening check.

The management of this process is delivered by Buckinghamshire Council.

Early Years Foundation Stage Framework:

Early years foundation stage (EYFS) statutory framework - GOV.UK (

The Teacher Assessment Guidance document for KS2 is now published for 2024. 

This supports schools in making statutory TA judgements at the end of key stage 2 and schools and local authorities in undertaking statutory moderation of these judgements. Please see:-

The Teacher Assessment Guidance document for KS2 2024

These support schools in making statutory TA judgements at the end of each key stage, and schools and local authorities in undertaking statutory moderation of these judgements.

Key stage 2 teacher assessment guidance 2024 - GOV.UK (

The Access Arrangements Guidance for KS2 2024

2024 key stage 2 access arrangements guidance (

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