The Guardian is reporting that Nicky Morgan has defined ‘coasting’ schools as those that fail to ensure 60% of pupils get five good GCSE grades, leaving the schools liable for intervention…
…In addition to the 60% GCSE benchmark, schools will also be judged on pupils’ progress. From 2016 onwards, secondary schools that fail to score highly enough over a three-year period on “Progress 8” – the government’s new accountability measure that shows a child’s progress between the end of primary school and their GCSEs – will also be classed as coasting.
Primary schools will similarly be deemed to be coasting if, over a three-year period, fewer than 85% of 11-year-olds achieve a level 4 in reading, writing and maths, and a higher-than-average proportion of pupils fail to make expected progress. Currently, the threshold for intervention in primaries is if fewer than 65% of pupils get a level 4.
For headteachers in areas with more demanding intakes, the move is likely to represent a daunting new challenge, with potentially dramatic consequences for school communities.
Schools classified as coasting will be asked to come up with a credible plan for improvement for consideration by the government’s eight regional schools commissioners; if the plan is convincing, schools will be supported, if it’s not good enough, they will be taken over and turned into academies…
In announcing the new measures, the education secretary said: “Our one nation approach is very much about making sure children are being properly supported to achieve their best in school. But, for too long, a group of coasting schools, many in leafy areas with more advantages than schools in disadvantaged communities, have fallen beneath the radar…”
Your reaction to the criteria that have been unveiled now by Nicky Morgan to define schools as ‘coasting’?
The education secretary claims to want to tackle what she calls coasting schools in leafy communities, but won’t the GCSE measure play into their hands and hit schools in deprived areas harder? The ‘Progress 8’ measure might potentially work the other way, but schools would appear to need to tick both boxes, not one or the other?
Also, how will these measures work alongside Ofsted? Their assessments are not mentioned here so will we effectively have two parallel systems in place for judging schools? Will this make Ofsted verdicts less important moving forwards?
Please give us your immediate reactions to these new criteria and let us know what impact – for good or bad – you expect they might have…
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