Need-to-know: Rules for new Y4 times tables check published

14 November 2018

You can take part in a voluntary pilot in June 2019, before the assessment becomes statutory in June 2020.

What is it?

The multiplication tables check (MTC) is a new assessment being introduced for year 4 pupils.

Subject to parliamentary approval, it’ll be statutory from the 2019/20 academic year. All eligible year 4 pupils in maintained schools, special schools and academies in England will be required to take it.

School-level results won’t be published in the performance tables, but the DfE will report on national and local authority results. 

Take part in the voluntary pilot

Between 10 June and 28 June 2019, there’s going to be a national voluntary pilot for the MTC. 

You’ll be able to access the MTC administration area from 1 April 2019, via NCA tools. There’s no requirement for you to pre-register.
You and your pupils can use this to become familiar with the check before it becomes statutory.


As the assessment framework explains:

  • It’s an online, on-screen assessment
  • You’ll have a 3 week window in June to administer the test
  • Each pupil will:
    • Take fewer than 5 minutes to complete it
    • Have 6 seconds to answer each question
    • Receive a score out of 25
  • There’s no expected standard 

The Standards and Testing Agency will publish further information in the assessment and reporting arrangements (ARA) document in autumn 2019.

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