It is one thing to say that good teachers motivate pupils by the depth of their knowledge, their ability to put things across, the impact of their personality and the empathy they show with their class. It is another to point, as the committee does, to the more general leadership of the school creating a motivating atmosphere which in turn rubs off on the children.
Then there is the equally difficult problem of the demotivating factors outside the school such as the erosion of the value placed on education in recent times and the increasing polarisation between improving and "stuck"
groups. The inevitable conclusion from the committee's report is that pupil motivation is bound up with all of those things.
The inquiry, inevitably, has raised more questions than it answered.
Perhaps painting with a broad brush was its intention. There is certainly little in it that comes as much of a surprise and little with which one could disagree. But the committee, without being explicit, has possibly put its finger on the most important factor of all - having an open approach where difficulties and differences can be readily admitted. If what Alan McLean describes (page three) as the "potentially transforming recommendation" to build pupils' feedback into their teaching and learning is to bear fruit, such a collegiate approach will certainly be a sine qua non.