Ministers to bring back compulsory times table tests for primary school children

Posted On: 
14th February 2018

The Education Secretary will signal a return to more traditional schooling by announcing that all primary school children will have tests on their times tables.

Children will soon face a national test on times tables
Credit: 
PA

The tests were shelved by Justine Greening when she was in charge of England's schools, but have been revived by her successor Damian Hinds.

It will be the first time since the 1940s that there will be national standardised testing, with trials due to launch this spring ahead of a rollout across the country next year.

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The idea was mooted by Nicky Morgan when she was education secretary, but was put on the back-burner during Ms Greening's tenure.

Schools minister Nick Gibb said the change would help children compete with the best performers overseas.

“The huge prize here is that there will be huge strides forward in other forms of mathematics, such as long form multiplication,” he said.

“They will be far better prepared to the secondary school curriculum than previous generations have been.

“We are determined to raise maths standards in our schools, and these checks form part of a number of reforms to the maths curriculum from primary school to GCSEs.

“We want to be the best in the world, and it absolutely right to say that we want to be up there with Shanghai, Singapore and other centres of excellence.”