Apology to Oscar-winner over wrong percentage

13th June 1997 at 01:00
I wish to apologise to Maureen Mather for an error in my statement of "OFSTED Oscar"-winning Bethune Park's 1996 national test results in our letter (TES, May 23). Their joint average in English and maths was in fact 51 per cent and not 48 per cent as we stated.

But this does not affect our points about the paradox and injustice of an Office for Standards in Education failing school in Liverpool scoring higher at 54 per cent, that it was also below the national average of 56 per cent, and that these are surely not high standards of achievement in literacy and numeracy as claimed for "Oscar" schools by HMCI in his annual report, whatever success they may represent for their specific pupils' capabilities.

I also wish to make it clear that we have never made any criticism of the value of the school's achievements with particularly disadvantaged and hearing-impaired children, and to express our regret for any distress caused by the form in which our citation of the school was reported. Our criticism was only of OFSTED. Whatever miracles the achievement of almost national average standards may represent for some pupils, the fact remains that high value-added achievement should not be confused with high "raw" achievement. If "OFSTED Oscars" are awarded on a value-added basis rather than on a "raw" achievement basis, then this must be made clear to avoid such confusion and a potential lowering of expectations.

CHARLES BELL, Article 26, BM Bell, London WC1

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number

Comments

The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now