July mentions of the Sutton Trust and EEF in Parliament and Policy.
22 July 2014
Charlotte Leslie MP (Con, Bristol North West)
To ask the Secretary of State for Education what assessment she has made of the efficacy of incentives designed to keep experienced teachers in the classroom.
David Laws MP (Minister for Schools and the Cabinet Office):
Teacher retention remains high: 90% of those entering the profession are teaching one year later, and 78% are teaching after five years. Reforms to teachers’ pay mean that schools have greater flexibility to attract, retain and reward the very best teachers.
A report by the Sutton Trust in 2011, ‘Improving the impact of teachers on pupil achievement in the UK’, concluded that a more flexible pay and promotion system would have the potential to attract and retain more high quality applicants to the teaching profession.
We are intending to evaluate pay implementation, including the impact on teachers’ career intentions. This will begin in the autumn.
The question and answer can also be accessed online here.
9 July 2014
Ian Austin: I welcome every penny that will be spent on improving the facilities at Dudley college. It is fantastic that we will get a new construction centre to go alongside the new manufacturing centre that is being built, the new sixth-form college, and the new college buildings that the shadow Secretary of State visited a couple of weeks ago, which were funded entirely locally, rather than by central Government.
Research by the Sutton Trust shows that bringing the lowest-performing 10% of teachers in the UK up to the average would make our country the third best-performing country in reading, and the fifth best in maths—subjects in which we currently fail to make the top 20……
Despite accounting for just 7% of school pupils, those from independent schools represent seven out of 10 High Court judges, more than half our leading journalists and doctors, and more than a third of MPs. Just five public schools send more pupils to Oxford and Cambridge than 2,000 state schools. I therefore reiterate my call for Ministers and those on our Front Bench to take up the Sutton Trust’s open access proposals.”
3 July 2014
Mention of the EEF in Social Mobility and Child Poverty Backbench Business Debate, instigated by Hazel Blears MP:
Hazel Blears MP (Lab, Salford and Eccles):
“It is also, perhaps in more prosaic terms, a financial issue. Research undertaken by theSutton Trust states that if we do not tackle the issues of social mobility, the subsequent waste of talent and skills could cost this country £140 billion by 2050. There is an ideological justification, but also an absolutely compelling practical and financial justification too.”
“…There has been some extremely good research by the Sutton Trust and I want to outline a few sharp bullet points that might help to put the debate in perspective. The state we are in now in the 21st century, in a modern industrialised, relatively wealthy affluent nation, causes us all a great deal of concern. Children in the poorest fifth of families are already nearly a year behind children from middle-income families when they start school at the age of five. I see this in my constituency day after day. I see children coming to school with speech and language problems—they are not even ready to access education. I see children, because of difficult family backgrounds, falling behind almost immediately when they come to school because they do not have the back-up from home and the community.”
Graham Stuart MP (Con, Beverley and Holderness), Chairman of the Education Select Committee:
“The biggest problem in our society is that we do such a dismal job for those people who are not only poor but do not have massive academic ability. They are not hopeless, however. We know that, if they have the right teaching, they can do well. Our problem as a society is that so many young people end up on the dole. In other countries, such as Austria, Switzerland and the Netherlands, the education system does not leave similarly disadvantaged people in the dole queue; it enables them to enter employment.
I am just throwing this into the debate because social mobility is very popular with people such as Sir Peter Lampl of the Sutton Trust, which does fantastic work. He is from a fairly underprivileged background and has reached the top. I say to him that the challenge is not people like him. It is not our biggest problem if people like him end up in middle management instead of becoming multi-millionaire philanthropists like him. Our biggest problem is that so many people have lousy, miserable, deprived lives because we did not give them the basic tools that they needed, along with a bit of self-belief and the idea that if they worked hard, they could do maths and pretty much anything else they wanted to do in life. I just throw that in to be controversial.”
Simon Wright (Lib Dem, Norwich South):
“The pupil premium is supporting the progress of students from poorer backgrounds. It is vital that head teachers retain the freedom to use this funding in a way that provides the greatest benefit to the circumstances of those it is intended to support. It also vital, however, that head teachers can make well-informed spending decisions through an evidence-based understanding of what works. The Education Endowment Foundationis providing resources to help schools identify the most effective interventions and its toolkit is now used by nearly half of all school leaders, but the attainment gap opens at a very young age, before children have even started school. The Sutton Trust believes that there is a 19-month gap at the start of school between the most and least advantaged children.”
“…One of the most effective interventions would be to attract more highly qualified early-years specialists, and I am encouraged that the remit of the EEF has recently been extended to include the early years. The challenges in raising awareness of what works in the early years will be different, due to the diversity of provision, but this is important work.”
David Laws MP (Minister of State for Schools and the Cabinet Office):
“We are continuing to put our money where our mouth —through the pupil premium. Since 2011, we have invested almost £4 billion to help schools directly to address educational disadvantage. This year, the pupil premium will increase to £2.5 billion a year—the full amount that we promised in the coalition agreement. That means that children who are poor and who receive the pupil premium throughout their school career will now receive—or their schools will receive—an additional £14,000 to boost their attainment, which is a significant amount of money. Schools will be able to make powerful use of that money, and they will be informed by the mechanisms to improve education that theEducation Endowment Foundation has flagged up as things that work.”
The full transcript of the debate can be accessed online here.