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Only research will provide true clarity of vision

I agree with Frank Furedi's observation that comparisons between education and medicine often miss the point. It will never be possible to prescribe the perfect lesson plan or to construct a formula for feedback that works for every child.

Regrettably, I struggle to support the remainder of his argument, which appears to rest on a misleading false dichotomy. While teachers are not doctors, they are professionals who deserve access to high-quality information to support the choices they must make every day. There are no off-the-shelf solutions, but it is useful to know what ideas - new and old - others have tried and how they have fared. Educational research that provides this type of information is a useful starting point for decision-making.

It is both unhelpful and incorrect to portray the use of evidence and the exercise of professional judgement as mutually exclusive.

Dr Kevan Collins, Chief executive, Education Endowment Foundation.

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