The NFER blog

Evidence for excellence in education


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How should secondary schools be held to account?

I’m very lucky working at NFER in that I have a large team of incredibly knowledgeable people around me – we work well together sharing out the jobs that need doing.  But when the consultation on secondary school accountability was launched I knew this was something I wanted to lead on myself.  The ways in which schools in England are held to account is at the very heart of whether our education system delivers what we, as a society, need it to or not. Continue reading


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Whose needs will the new TechBacc serve?

The government has recently announced its plans to introduce a new TechBacc performance measure.  There must be virtually unanimous support among young people and stakeholders for such an idea, in particular I would expect this route to be appealing for young people who prefer and are more motivated by an applied learning route.  There are some valuable elements of the proposal, however, I also have some concerns about the detail, as well as the speed of its implementation. Continue reading