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Value-added trouble

The Department for Education has admitted that it is unlikely to be possible to put schools in rank order under any value-added scheme which may be adopted.

In a briefing paper sent out to local authorities and interested MPs, the DFE points out that the transition between key stage 3 and GCSE gradings and chance variations between schools - particularly small primaries - and colleges mean the exercise will not be accurate enough for rankings. However, it should be possible to establish whether an institution's value added is above or below the national average by a statistically significant amount. Value Added in Education is available free from the DFE Publications Unit, order on 0171 510 0150.

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