Stable results compared to 2021, but CE1 and 6e are struggling in French

It is a useful barometer for measuring the level of French pupils. At each start of the school year, the national assessments, which now concern the classes of CP, CE1 and 6th, make it possible to gauge their level in French and mathematics. The Ministry of Education unveiled the figures for the 2022 vintage on Friday.

Overall stable results compared to 2021, after 2020 assessments which had shown a drop in student performance due to the closure of schools during the health crisis. A point of concern, however, relates to the pupils of 6th, whose level of French is in decline. “The effect of the health crisis on the results is not lasting over time. We managed to overcome the difficulties. But the disruptions linked to Covid-19 have had an impact on the level of French, a fortiori in the field of writing”, analyzes Edouard Geffray, director general of school education.

The effect of splitting large sections

Regarding CP students, they show results at least at the same level, in French as in math, compared to 2021. And even on the rise in oral word comprehension, as well as in the ability to solve problems or to compare numbers. The performance gaps between pupils in REP+ and those in non-priority education schools even greatly reduce, in the areas of “knowing the names of letters and the sound they produce”, “manipulating phonemes”, “comparing numbers” and “solving problems”.

“It is probably the effect of the duplication of the large sections in REP +, which has made it possible to substantially reduce the differences at the start of the CP class”, explains Edouard Geffray. But these gaps remain for the oral sentence comprehension exercise.

The writing of words down in CE1

CE1 students show lower results in French in several areas compared to their peers assessed in 2021. For example, writing words, reading words aloud, understanding sentences and texts. “This is most likely explained by the health situation in January and February, a pivotal moment in the CP year for learning to read and write,” says Edouard Geffray.

In math, their results are down for “reading whole numbers”, but up in the field of subtraction. At this level, there is also a reduction in the differences in results compared to 2021 in maths between pupils in priority education and their other classmates in lambda classes.

Lower results in French in 6th grade

The class that interests the most this year is undoubtedly that of 6th, the Minister of Education having announced his intention to remodel the college this year. Announcements will be made on this subject next week. However, while student results are stable in mathematics compared to 2021, they are down in French. Their average score in this subject is 256.5 points, compared to 260.8 points in 2021. At the same time, there is a drop in the share of students in the high levels, which are 33.8% this year compared to 36.7% in 2021.

And the performance of students in fluency (ability to read aloud a large number of words quickly), even if it is up this year, is not terrible, since students arrive at an average score of 126 words read in one minute. “In detail, we see that in this area, 55.6% of students have a satisfactory level and 15% have a very insufficient level,” says Fabienne Rosenwald, director of evaluation, forecasting and performance ( Depp). Results that Pap Ndiaye will scrutinize to propose measures at the entrance to college.

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