A recent literature review on the subject of primary to secondary school transition concluded that there was “fairly robust evidence that pupils' educational outcomes decline after they move to secondary school” (Jindal-Snape et al, 2019).
The report found “evidence of a decline in pupils' motivation, school engagement and attitudes, and an increase in absence and dropping out”, as well as “evidence of a negative impact of transitions on wellbeing, a decline in feelings of school belongingness and connectedness, poorer social and emotional health, and higher levels of depression and anxiety”.
In my book, Making Key Stage 3 Count (2016), I reported similar findings and argued that, often, this decline – both academic and pastoral in nature – was the result of insufficient or ineffective communication between primary and secondary schools which had several harmful consequences:
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