Tables may be turned

November 24, 1995

This could be the last year that schools and colleges have to put up with the "serious flaws" contained in the schools and colleges league tables published this week by the Department for Education and Employment.

Alternative rankings proposed by Harvey Goldstein of the Institute of Education in London are being considered by the department. Mr Goldstein said that his rankings adjusted the raw results data to take account of prior achievement. It was then possible, he said, to measure the progress achieved by individual students. This would form a real basis for comparing institutions and could transform the much criticised examinations league tables.

In a paper to be presented in the New Year, Mr Goldstein says the current aggregate data obscures important information and the failure to take account of students' prior achievement results in misleading information.

He says this presents prima facie evidence for the potential inequity of unadjusted league tables.

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