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Croydon primary school's exam results under investigation by Standards and Testing Agency

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A PRIMARY school's exam results are under investigation by the Department for Education (DfE).

Heavers Farm Primary, in South Norwood, has been unable to release its SATs results while the Standards and Testing Agency (STA), an arm of the DfE, completes its review.

The Advertiser understands the investigation relates to the conduct of a member of the school's support staff during the exam process.

The school believes the issue is "minor" and it is "extremely unlikely" the results will be annulled, a source said.

In another development, Heavers Farm has confirmed head of school Andrea Cousins has resigned and another member of the senior leadership team is on long-term sick leave.

It is understood that matter is not directly connected to concerns about the school's exam results.

It has, however, fuelled rumours among concerned parents that have led several to contact the Advertiser.

Ms Cousins and her deputy worked under head teacher Susan Papas, who spent most of the last school year at Selsdon Primary, where she took over as executive head last September.

They were left in charge of Heavers Farm, in Dinsdale Gardens, while Ms Papas concentrated on raising standards at Selsdon.

Ms Papas said she was unable to comment in detail on changes to the management of Heavers Farm but they were unconnected to the STA investigation. 

"There is a delay in getting the results back but we are expecting them any day," she said.

Ms Papas confirmed Ms Cousins had resigned and said the deputy head was away from school for "personal reasons".

"The delay and the other matters are unconnected," she added.

It is understood there were disagreements within the leadership team about how Heavers Farm was managed while Ms Papas was away.

Selsdon posted significantly improved SATs results last month, with 82 per cent of pupils reaching at least a Level 4 in English and maths, the benchmark standard, an increase of 21 per cent. In 2013 Heavers Farm scored 65 per cent.

A spokesman for the council said: "We are aware of the concerns of the Standards and Testing Agency and are working closely with them, the school, and the Department for Education to ensure that the investigation is concluded swiftly."

A Department for Education spokesman said: "The Standards and Testing Agency is currently conducting an investigation into the administration of the 2014 Key Stage 2 national curriculum tests at the school.

"While these types of investigation are undertaken it is standard procedure to suppress a school's results until the investigation is concluded. As no final decision on the case has yet been made the school's results have not been returned to them."

Last year SATs results at South Norwood Primary were annulled by the STA after discrepancies with how maths exams were administered. 

Croydon primary school's exam results under investigation by Standards and Testing Agency


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