Cut down teacher workload through SATs disruption

SATs Companion

SATs Companion is headed up by director and former headteacher Nasir Qurashi. Nasir leads a group of dedicated teachers and headteachers who have researched the challenges teachers, pupils and parents were facing with the new SATs curriculum changes. His team has developed an innovative, pupil and teacher-oriented system which has reduced teacher workload, improved pupil progress, and saved schools money.

Website: Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Images courtesy of supplier. Images courtesy of supplier.

When it came to SATs, Natalie Carry, deputy headteacher at St Edward’s Primary School in Birmingham, had a real problem. “We were finding it difficult to find questions for the pupils to answer,” explains Natalie, “and we were using booklets but these can only be used once.”

This is something our research told us was a key challenge for teachers. Finding appropriate resources which didn’t come with a mammoth price tag was a difficult task by itself! Add to the mix 30 worksheets or books, which then needs to be marked by the teacher, and you have a workload which very quickly becomes unmanageable.

We wanted to tackle this problem head on. For the teachers and headteachers here at SATs Companion, using technology has always been about finding innovative ways to help teachers. However, the challenge wasn’t just reducing workload (which we did!); it was also the new curriculum coverage and style of questions. For the latter, we conducted cutting-edge R&D, bringing them into the 21st century by taking them online with SATs Companion. We have developed over 40 different question-styles based on the government framework.

Natalie has found that this aspect of the system has helped St Edward’s tremendously with SATs prep: “With SATs Companion, we’re able to have questions which can change. So, we can set the children a task one day, and the next day we can set another task in the same area, but with a whole new set of questions.”

This means saving both time and money, as well as no more queueing for the photocopier!

Another challenge we found during our research: teachers felt there was too little support, and too few resources, to effectively implement the new curriculum. They were concerned that there was not enough time for them to plan, teach, mark, assess and report on pupil progress. PPA time was not enough, leading to stress and, sadly, some staff leaving the profession.

Thankfully, Natalie has found that using SATs Companion enables St Edward’s teachers to quickly and effectively plan, prepare and provide intervention: “It was clearly set up so that it supports teachers. We’ve been able to quickly analyse pupil data to ensure that they are aware of the gaps in pupils’ learning. This has saved time, and ensured that they can then spend time looking at exactly which questions the pupils need to answer next.”

Hearing feedback such as this really motivates us as a team. When we initially developed SATs Companion, we had one simple objective in mind: To free up teachers’ time.

SATs Companion quickly identifies intervention areas for individual pupils, groups and classes. Teachers can review data at the touch of a button, before assigning differentiated questions. Pupils can also independently access our bank of 28,000 questions. SATs Companion records, marks and shows pupil responses to questions, so teachers can identify and address misconceptions quickly.

Sound good? Take our one-hour workload-buster challenge! Book a 20-minute online demo to receive £100 worth of SATs test papers for FREE! Visit or contact [email protected] / 020 8767 1971 for more information.

Want to receive cutting-edge insights from leading educators each week? Sign up to our Community Update and be part of the action!

Register for free to continue reading
Registration is a free and easy way to support us.
When you register, you'll join a grassroots community where you can:
• Enjoy unlimited access to articles
• Get recommendations tailored to your interests
• Attend virtual events with our leading contributors
Register Now

Latest stories

  • How to handle stress while teaching in a foreign country
    How to handle stress while teaching in a foreign country

    Teaching English in a foreign country is likely to be one of the most demanding experiences you'll ever have. It entails relocating to a new country, relocating to a new home, and beginning a new career, all of which are stressful in and of themselves, but now you're doing it all at once. And you'll have to converse in a strange language you may not understand.

  • Is Learning Fun for You, Teacher?
    Is Learning Fun for You, Teacher?

    Over the weekend, my family of five went to an Orlando theme park, and I decided we should really enjoy ourselves by purchasing an Unlimited Quick Queue pass. It was so worth the money! We rode every ride in the park at least twice, but one ride required us to ride down a rapidly flowing river, which quenched us with water. It was incredible that my two-year-old was laughing as well. We rode the Infinity Falls ride four times in one day—BEST DAY EVER for FAMILY FUN in the Sun! The entire experience was epic, full of energizing emotions and, most importantly, lots of smiles. What made this ride so cool was that the whole family could experience it together, the motions were on point, and the water was the icing on the cake. It had been a while since I had that type of fun, and I will never forget it.

  • Free recycling-themed resources for KS1 and KS2
    Free recycling-themed resources for KS1 and KS2

    The Action Pack is back for the start of the brand new school year, just in time for Recycle Week 2021 on 20 - 26 September, to empower pupils to make the world a better and more sustainable place. The free recycling-themed resources are designed for KS1 and KS2 and cover the topics of Art, English, PSHE, Science and Maths and have been created to easily fit into day-to-day lesson planning.

  • Inspire your pupils with Emma Raducanu
    Inspire your pupils with Emma Raducanu

    Following the exceptional performance from British breakthrough star Emma Raducanu, who captured her first Grand Slam at the US Open recently, Emmamania is already inspiring pupils aged 4 - 11 to get more involved in tennis - and LTA Youth, the flagship
    programme from The LTA, the governing body of tennis in Britain, has teachers across the country covered.

  • 5 ways to boost your school's eSafety
    5 ways to boost your school's eSafety

    eSafety is a term that constantly comes up in school communities, and with good reason. Students across the world are engaging with technology in ways that have never been seen before. This article addresses 5 beginning tips to help you boost your school’s eSafety. 

  • Tackling inequality in EdTech
    Tackling inequality in EdTech

    We have all been devastated by this pandemic that has swept the world in a matter of weeks. Schools have rapidly had to change the way they operate and be available for key workers' children. The inequalities that have long existed in communities and schools are now being amplified by the virus.

  • EdTech review & The Curriculum Lab
    EdTech review & The Curriculum Lab

    The world is catching up with a truth that we’ve championed at Learning Ladders for the last 5 years - that children’s learning outcomes are greatly improved by teachers, parents and learners working in partnership. 

  • Reducing primary to secondary transition stress
    Reducing primary to secondary transition stress

    As school leaders grapple with the near impossible mission to start bringing more students into schools from 1st June, there are hundreds of thousands of Year 6 pupils thinking anxiously about their move to secondary school.

  • Generation Z and online tutoring: natural bedfellows?
    Generation Z and online tutoring: natural bedfellows?

    The K-12 online tutoring market is booming around the world, with recent research estimating it to grow by 12% per year over the next five years, a USD $60bn increase. By breaking down geographic barriers and moving beyond the limits of local teaching expertise, online tutoring platforms are an especially valuable tool for those looking to supplement their studies in the developing world, and students globally are increasingly signing up to online tuition early on in their secondary education schooling. 

  • Employable young people or human robots?
    Employable young people or human robots?

    STEM skills have been a major focus in education for over a decade and more young people are taking science, technology, engineering, and maths subjects at university than ever before, according to statistics published by UCAS. The downside of this is that the UK is now facing a soft skills crisis and the modern world will also require children to develop strong social skills as the workplaces are transformed by technology. 

In order to make our website better for you, we use cookies!

Some firefox users may experience missing content, to fix this, click the shield in the top left and "disable tracking protection"