Flawed tables

19th September 1997 at 01:00
In November the Department for Education and Employment will publish GCSE performance tables which, as a matter of policy, contain inaccurate information.

The historic data, which are being published for the first time, do not take into account the results of appeals received after the publication date of the relevant year's performance tables. Any school which received results of appeals last October and whose percentage of pupils gaining five or more top grades increased as a result will not have this taken into account 12 months later.

A DFEE official told me that this was because there was not enough time to update the figures and get this year's tables published in time. So, to ease an administrative burden some schools may have false information published about them.

If the Government insists on putting so much emphasis on the league tables, it owes it to schools to publish accurate figures.

IAN THOMSON

Headteacher Crispin School Street, Somerset

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