There was a debate yesterday on educational attainment in Yorkshire and the Humber led by Jo Cox, Labour MP for Batley and Spen, where the Sutton Trust and the Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) were referred to several times.
Jo Cox called for more investment in the region so its schools could recruit and retain the best teachers, saying that “evidence from the Sutton Trust and the London School of Economics shows that if we were to raise the performance of the least effective teachers in our schools just to the national average, England would rank in the top five systems in the world for reading and mathematics.”
Sarah Champion, Labour MP for Rotherham, mentioned the Sutton Trust’s Missing Talent when she said that “research from the Sutton Trust shows that one in three boys eligible for free school meals who got top marks at key stage 2 fail to achieve among the top 25% of marks at GCSE”.
Richard Burgon, Labour MP for Leeds East, in commenting on the government’s academies plans, referred to both editions on Chain Effects and quoted the report directly by saying that “far from providing a solution to disadvantage, a few [academy] chains may be exacerbating it”.
Former Education Select Committee Chair Graham Stuart, Conservative MP for Beverley and Holderness, referred to the Sutton Trust’s most recent report Caught Out when he said that schools can end up “putting barriers in the way of poorer children getting places at their schools” adding that “according to the trust, more than 1,500 primary schools have socially selective intakes”.
Melanie Onn, Labour MP for Great Grimsby, directly referred to the EEF when discussing the use of teaching assistants. She said that “teaching assistants are a huge resource for schools, but they are often undervalued and not used effectively”, adding that “the Education Endowment Foundation has called for closer working relationships between teachers and TAs, and for more training opportunities”.
The debate appeared to be prompted by the January 2016 report from the Social Market Foundation – who are running a commission on inequality in education – which found that Yorkshire and the Number was the poorest performing region in the UK.