We look at the different options pupils face after GCSEs and how they affect employability and earnings

How prevalent is Year 12 drop-out from selective schools?

Following the coverage of St. Olave’s school in The Guardian, I revisited the analysis I did on Year 12 retention to examine the prevalence of drop-out from selective schools. I look at a subset of pupils: those who made it to the end of Year 12 and were entered for at least three AS-Levels in [...]

By | 2017-10-23T12:55:24+00:00 September 1st, 2017|Admissions, Post-16 provision|

GCSE results day 2017: Good news about resits in English

[This post was updated at 18.15 on 24th August 2017 to amend 2016 figures for maths] One bit of good news from this year’s GCSE results is that the percentages of 17-year-olds in England achieving A*-C grades in English have gone up. However, working out by just how much they have improved is made slightly [...]

By | 2017-10-23T12:55:36+00:00 August 24th, 2017|Exams and assessment, Post-16 provision|

A-Level results day 2017: A look at changing grade distributions

We looked at some of the main A-Level results trends this morning, and separately we have looked at how results changed in subjects that have been reformed (in brief: attainment fell slightly). But there are a couple of other interesting trends in grade distributions to be drawn out. Some specific subjects are seeing quite large [...]

By | 2017-10-23T12:50:06+00:00 August 17th, 2017|Exams and assessment, Post-16 provision|

A-Level results day 2017: The impact of reform in England and Wales

A massive 59% of A-Level exams sat in England this year were in reformed subjects which follow the new, linear model of sitting one set of exams at the end of the two-year course. Overall, and perhaps surprisingly, A-Level entries by 18-year-olds in reformed subjects increased by 2.3% in England. This compares to 0.7% in [...]

By | 2017-10-23T12:50:17+00:00 August 17th, 2017|Exams and assessment, Post-16 provision|

A-Level results day 2017: Is it the end of the road for AS-Levels?

Last year, we reported on entries and grades in the first set of AS-Levels to be reformed. Compared to 2015, entries fell in all subjects, ranging from 11% (business studies) to 33% (art and design). This year, more subjects have been reformed and decoupled from A-Levels. Data published by Ofqual earlier in the summer showed [...]

By | 2017-10-23T12:51:16+00:00 August 17th, 2017|Exams and assessment, Post-16 provision|

A-Level results day 2017: The key trends in three charts

Overall, A-Level pass rates have edged up slightly A*-A passes were up slightly (26.3% of all awards v 25.8% last year), though the overall A*-E pass rate was down slightly (97.9% v 98.1%). The proportion of A*s awarded was also up - to 8.3% of all awards, versus 8.1% last year. However, in England the [...]

By | 2017-11-13T15:14:42+00:00 August 17th, 2017|Exams and assessment, Post-16 provision|

Can we compare the A-Level performance of independent schools and state schools?

Last week the TES ran a story based on some research by Tom Richmond [PDF] comparing the A-Level value added scores of independent schools and state schools. In the story, the average value added score for the 10 highest attaining independent schools was given as 0.19, and for the 10 highest attaining non-selective state schools 0.26[1]. [...]

By | 2017-10-23T12:50:32+00:00 August 14th, 2017|Post-16 provision, School accountability|

Measuring two-year retention post-16: what does it show?

Each year, the government of the day publishes performance indicators about schools and colleges. While ostensibly they provide the public (and particularly parents) with information, and so inform choice, they are also a lever to encourage the system to function in the way the government wants. Indicators come and go as governments change. Plans for [...]

By | 2017-10-23T12:50:55+00:00 August 9th, 2017|Post-16 provision, School accountability|

Young people are taking fewer A-Levels as qualification reforms kick in and per-student spending falls

Post-16 education is in a period of flux, with major qualification reforms and a drop in per-student spending. Reformed A-Levels began to be introduced from September 2015, with a concurrent decoupling of AS-Levels. And, as the IFS have reported [PDF], spending per student in school sixth forms and further education has been falling since 2010/11. [...]

By | 2017-10-23T12:50:47+00:00 May 18th, 2017|Exams and assessment, Post-16 provision|