Educational outcomes in North Yorkshire are some of the best in the Country, and we are rightly proud of that. But this isn't true for all of our children.
In common with many other local authorities, particularly rural ones, the progress made by our most disadvantaged young people does not match that of their peers. Pupil achievement data shows that disadvantaged pupils continue to perform less well than their peers at all key stages and the gaps between those eligible for free school meals and others are wider in North Yorkshire than the national average. This is a matter of deep concern to us all - politicians, Headteachers, and professional colleagues.
In recent years there has been some progress in the County, especially in raising achievement for our disadvantaged pupils in early years and at Key Stage 4; however, this remains inconsistent. For some of our pupils the gap in attainment is not yet closing, for example for some groups of pupils with special educational needs and disabilities.
Our "Strategy for Closing the Gap in Educational Progress and Attainment 2015 2018" and the "Closing the Gap in Early Years 2015 2018" set out the Local Authority priorities to ensure rapid progress in this area.