Key Stage 1 National Testing


Key Stage 1 SATs consist of formal assessments in maths, reading and spelling, punctuation and grammar that take around 3 hours in total to complete, plus informal assessments in science that take place throughout the year.

SATs are just one aspect of the KS1 assessment process. Your child's teacher will be taking all their work in Years 1 and 2 into consideration in order to build a full, accurate picture of how well your child is doing. The full, teacher-assessment report about your child's progress in maths, English reading, English writing and science should be sent to you by the end of the summer term.

When will my child take KS1 SATs?

Maths and English SATs usually take place in May (they're not date-specific as KS2 SATs are, so you probably won't know in advance when the tests are due to take place) and are not given all at once – assessments are spread out over a period of time, and teachers try to work them into the normal routine in such a way that students may not feel like they’re being tested.

KS1 SATs are not timed.

How do I know whether my child has done well?

KS1 SATs results show where your child’s academic knowledge ranks against the national average.

The grading system involves children's raw score – the actual number of marks they get – being translated into a scaled score, where a score of 100 means the child is working at the expected standard. A score below 100 indicates that the child needs more support, whereas a score of above 100 suggests the child is working at a higher level than expected for their age. The maximum score possible is 115, and the minimum is 85.

KS1 SATs papers are marked by your child’s teacher. Schools don't publish KS1 SATs results, and they are not sent to the government. You won’t receive your child’s KS1 SATs results from school automatically, but if you’d like to see them you can ask for them.

Children will also be matched against ‘performance descriptors’ such as working towards the expected level, working at the expected level and working above the expected level, when being assessed by their teachers at the end of Key Stage 1.

How important are KS1 SATs?

As soon as the word ‘exam’ pops up, it can set off the parental panic button! Think of Key Stage 1 SATs as evaluations rather than exams – they’re not designed to be passed or failed, and they gauge what level your child has reached rather than whether or not they meet the standards set in the test. It’s another way to highlight where your child is doing well, and where they might need extra help.