Key stage 2: guide to registering pupils for the tests

Information for primary schools on how to submit details of pupils who are eligible for key stage 2 (KS2) national curriculum tests (commonly called SATs) in 2023.

Pupil registration actions

Pupil registration opens on the Primary Assessment Gateway (PAG) on Monday 13 February 2023. Pupil registration ensures that you receive the correct quantities of test materials and your test attendance registers are accurate.

To access the ‘Manage pupil registration’ form for the first time, sign in to the PAG, select the ‘My Activity’ tab then ‘Outstanding activity’. Pupil referral units will find the form in ‘Available activity’.

The Standards and Testing Agency (STA) produced the following video demonstrating how to complete pupil registration:

video demonstrating how to complete pupil registration.

Section 6.2 of the 2023 KS2 assessment and reporting arrangements (ARA) also includes further guidance.

By 11:59pm on Friday 10 March 2023, you must:

  • check your pupil list
  • add pupils who are not on you school’s ‘existing pupils’ list
  • if required, correct pupils’ details such as their name or date of birth

All pupils will show as ‘registered’ for each test subject. You can change a pupil’s status by selecting ‘edit’ and selecting one of the following codes from the drop-down list:

Code Description
Registered Pupil is expected to sit the test or will later be recorded as ‘just arrived’ or ‘unable to access’ on the attendance register
Below Pupil is working below the overall standard of the test subject
Future Pupil is taking one or more, but not all, assessments in a future year
Left Pupil has left the school
Previous Pupil took one or more, but not all, assessments in a previous year
Unregistered Pupil appears incorrectly in ‘existing pupils’ list

Once you have checked that your pupils’ details are correct, you must submit the form.

You must still complete pupil registration and submit the form, even if you do not have any pupils at the end of KS2 who will take the tests. It is important that pupil data is correct so that, when you submit teacher assessment data on 30 June, it matches the data already held. It also ensures the results data STA returns to your school matches the pupil data held in your management information system.

If you submitted your school census data to the Department for Education (DfE), your pupil list will be pre-populated. However, you still need to check that the data is accurate.

Your data will not be pre-populated if you:

  • are a pupil referral or a secure unit
  • are a non-maintained special school that did not place a test order by the deadline in November 2022
  • did not submit your school census data to DfE

In these cases, you will need to upload your pupil data. You can do this by adding pupils individually to the ‘Manage pupil registration’ form. Alternatively, you can use the upload template available in the ‘Manage pupil registration - upload multiple pupils’ form. You can find this in ‘Available activity’.

If you have a ‘Manage pupil registration’ form in your ‘Outstanding activity’ section, you must submit this form first before you can successfully upload multiple pupils, if required.

Independent schools

You will only be able to register pupils for the tests if you:

  • placed a KS2 test order in November 2022
  • have a written agreement in place with the local authority that will monitor your KS2 tests
  • informed us of your local authority monitoring arrangement on the PAG by Friday 9 December 2022

You should add pupils’ details individually on the ‘Manage pupil registration’ form or by using the ‘Manage pupil registration - upload multiple pupils’ template.

If you choose to use the ‘upload multiple pupils’ template, you must submit a blank ‘Manage pupil registration’ form first to clear your ‘Outstanding activity’. You can then populate your template with pupil data, upload and submit.

To complete pupil registration, you must navigate to your updated ‘Manage pupil registration’ form, now within your ‘Available activity’, check your pupil data and submit.

If your school does not intend to administer every test, you should unregister pupils for the tests you are not planning to administer. Independent schools that do not upload their pupils’ details and complete pupil registration by Friday 10 March 2023 will not be able to participate in the tests.

Access arrangements

Schools should register pupils who need access arrangements for the KS2 tests, regardless of whether they go on to take them. You should complete pupil registration before making applications or notifications for access arrangements. This is because you no longer need to manually enter pupils’ details in the application forms. Instead, you will select the pupil from a drop-down list.

Pupils with English as an additional language

You should ensure pupils with English as an additional language (EAL) are included in your KS2 pupil registration data, regardless of whether they go on to take the tests. Section 6.5 of the 2023 KS2 ARA provides further guidance on EAL pupils.

Amendments to pupil registration

If you become aware of any pupils who leave or join your school, even after the deadline, it is important that you update pupil registration. You can do this until Friday 19 May 2023.

If you want to make additional changes after you have submitted the form, you can amend the ‘Manage pupil registration’ form and re-submit it.

Attendance register

If you add a new pupil to the attendance register during test week, you must also add them to the ‘Manage pupil registration’ form on the PAG, so that STA has a record of their unique pupil number.

This includes new pupils:

  • who are working below the standard of the tests
  • who are working at the standard of the tests but who are unable to access them
  • whose performance cannot be established because they have just arrived in school

Further information

If you have any further questions about how to register a pupil or require support completing pupil registration, you can contact the national curriculum assessments helpline on 0300 303 3013 or email

Published 18 February 2015
Last updated 16 February 2023 + show all updates
  1. Added further clarification to the 'Independent schools' section

  2. Updated information for the 2023 tests.

  3. This has been updated for the 2022 test cycle.

  4. Updated for the 2020 test cycle.

  5. Updated for the 2019 test cycle.

  6. Updated for the 2018 test cycle.

  7. Updated for the 2017 test cycle.

  8. Updated to reflect 2016 dates and guidance.

  9. First published.