Friday, June 17th, 2011 A study apparently demonstrating the benefits of academy status seems to have been highly influential in recent weeks. The research, by academics at the London School of Economics, was published in April. It has been picked up not only by Blairite commentators who backed the original academies policy, but now by the Department for Education in its push to encourage all schools to become academies. I would also hazard a guess that it was in the mind of the Today programme presenter Sarah Montague when she asked a sceptical head teacher yesterday morning to accept the statement that academies improveRead More →

Wednesday, 1st June, 2011 Right, I haven’t blogged for a while, but thought I’d just post here an extract from a speech I made just after Christmas about what can be read into English Sats results for 11-year-olds. I’ve been prompted to do this after reading, over the last two days, the Evening Standard’s coverage of what it claims is a literacy crisis in London. Yesterday, part of its front-page coverage talked about one in four children being “practically illiterate”, seemingly based on the proportion of pupils achieving level 3 or below in English Sats. Today, it highlighted the number of pupils “with a readingRead More →