Skip to content ↓



All Year 6 children are required to take externally-set assessments in English and Mathematics. The standard papers cover levels 3-5, with level 4 being the expected national average at the end of primary school. Children sit the following tests:

Year 6 English SATs

  • English grammar, punctuation and spelling – Paper 1 comprises 40 to 50 short-answer questions covering grammar, punctuation and vocabulary, taking 45 minutes; Paper 2 is a spelling test with 20 questions, taking approximately 15 minutes.
  • English reading – one paper based on reading comprehension of three texts, with a total of 35 to 40 questions of increasing difficulty. Children are allowed one hour in total, including reading time.

The English grammar, punctuation and spelling test covers sentence grammar, punctuation, vocabulary, handwriting and spelling and was introduced in 2013. This replaced the old writing paper, with writing now being tested purely through teacher assessment

Year 6 Mathematics SATs

  • Mathematics – Papers 1 and 2, each lasting 45 minutes, and Paper 3, a 20-minute mental maths test. Calculators are not permitted.

Teacher assessment 

  • Other subjects, including English writing, speaking and listening, science, are assessed by teachers rather than by children taking a formal written test. This assessment data is then submitted to the Department for Education, and is subject to moderation.
  • Children’s progress, as well as their achievement, will be measured and reported on.