Two teachers resign after Sats results investigation at Colburn Primary School

Former school headteacher Mike Watt has been banned from teaching.

Two teachers have resigned after an investigation into Sats tests at Colburn Primary School.

Headteacher Mike Watt and a second member of staff, understood to be year six teacher Emma Kelly, have left the school, it has been confirmed today.

An investigation was launched in July after concerns were raised about the administration of this year’s statutory teacher assessment for key stage 2 writing.

The results were later annulled. North Yorkshire County Council has now confirmed that some pupils have had other Sats results annulled following the conclusion of the investigation.

Richmondshire Today understands several pupils were interviewed over the summer holidays about how the Sats tests were conducted by the two teachers.

One parent, who asked not to be named, said parents had been left frustrated and angry that the children had worked hard, but the tests had counted for nothing due to the failings.

She added: “Mr Watt has been off on full pay on £80,000 a year since before the summer which must have been hard for him.”

Judith Kirk, North Yorkshire County Council’s assistant director for education and skills, said: “The Standards and Testing Agency has written to the chair of governors at Colburn Community Primary School to confirm that key stage 2 test outcomes have been annulled for a number of Year 6 pupils who were involved in end of key stage 2 Sats last academic year.

“This follows the annulment of Colburn’s key stage 2 writing assessments after concerns were raised about the administration of the statutory teacher assessment of writing.

“During an investigation commissioned by the school’s board of governors, allegations regarding the administration of the tests were received.

“These allegations were passed to the Standards and Testing Agency for consideration.

“The outcome of the STA investigation is that some of the test results for last year’s cohort have been annulled.

“We have supported Colburn Primary throughout the investigation and worked with them to inform the affected pupils’ new secondary schools to make sure that their learning is not adversely affected in any way.

“School governors are taking relevant actions to ensure that future processes for the administration of statutory assessments are comprehensive and follow national guidance.

“We will always act swiftly to ensure fair and proper practice and to safeguard the educational futures of our pupils. As with this process we will always investigate thoroughly so that families can always be confident of accurate and fair assessments of their children’s learning.

“Following investigation by the Standards and Testing Agency, the headteacher accepted that the outcome of the investigations of the STA did not serve the best interests of the school. Consequently, the school governors have accepted his resignation to leave at the end of the autumn term.

“Additionally, the resignation of a teacher as a result of the outcome of the STA investigations has also been accepted.

“Governors have secured robust interim leadership arrangements while they consider the longer term leadership of the school.”

Deputy head Debbie Nicholas was appointed acting head after the allegations came to light.

Angie Dale, Colburn’s chair of governors, said: “As governors we have been working with North Yorkshire County Council throughout this process to make sure that no child is disadvantaged by these annulments.

“This is an upsetting development, but we are determined to continue to take appropriate actions and change processes in school, as necessary, to ensure the integrity of future assessments.”


  1. Karma!
    so many great staff lost their jobs at Colburn School undeservedly whilst people stood by and knowingly watched. its a disgrace. Where is the justice for the 15+ staff now

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