Head calls for end to 'misleading' results figures - The Leamington Observer

Head calls for end to 'misleading' results figures

Leamington Editorial 18th Jul, 2014 Updated: 28th Oct, 2016   0

A HEADTEACHER is urging schools in the district to refuse to play the exam league tables game.

Paul MacIntyre, head of Myton School in Warwick, is calling for support to put an end to misleading exam results and simplistic league tables ahead of the release of forthcoming A-level results.

Mr MacIntyre said initial figures released on GCSE and A-Level ‘results day’ – such as the percentage of pupils achieving A-C grades – could sometimes change dramatically at a later date and therefore give parents the wrong impression of how a school was performing.

And starting with next month’s A-level results, Myton has decided to celebrate successes of individual students but not to publish details of its overall performance until September.

Mr MacIntyre, said: “It has long been accepted that they (provisional results) can be quite misleading and at Myton we do not think potentially inaccurate data is helpful for parents.

“We have encouraged other schools to follow our lead but there is no unanimous agreement amongst local schools. However we will take the lead as we feel secure in our examination performance and morally want to do the right thing.

“We are mindful that the first school to do so may well be suspected of not publishing whole cohort results because ‘results are not very good’. So, as we don’t yet know the results, although we are expecting them to be very good, we are publishing our plans now and explaining our reasons.”

He added the pressure to ‘spin’ results added little to parents’ perception of schools and results published later in September were likely to be a more accurate reflection of a school’s overall performance.

Mr MacIntyre said the best way for parents to judge schools in the district was to visit them and experience what each had to offer.

Nigel Minns, Head of Learning and Achievement at Warwickshire County Council, said while a school’s overall results could change significantly from the initial data, they remained a valuable tool for parents.

He said: “The whole cohort results are one of the most important factors, but not the only factor, for prospective parents in judging whether to send their children to a particular school.

“Parents will expect to have the latest information available to them when making this decision and it is important that schools share their results in a timely way so that they are available alongside open evenings and other admissions events.

“Myton School is planning to make the results available on their website in September once they are confident that they are accurate. This is well before parents have to make their decisions.”

He added the council was not aware of any other schools in Warwickshire planning not to publish provisional results in August.

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