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Good League Tables Have Potential

media release


THURSDAY 2 FEBRUARY 2012


Good League Tables Have Potential


“Ever since national standards were first suggested, there has been disagreement about how the information that is collected should beused. The primary teachers’ union (NZEI), want the information kept private. But the new Minister of Education, Hekia Parata, is saying that not only will the information be made public but that the Ministry of Education may actually compile such ‘league tables.’ Minister Parata is right to consider this,” says Steve Thomas, Researcher at Maxim Institute.

“The data has the potential to be very useful. Information about schools is a precious commodity and the reason it is so highly sought is simple—people want to know what goes on in classrooms and how well children are learning at school. This can help us understand which schools need the mostassistance, and can help parents make informed choices about their children’s education. As long as the data is reported well and with sufficient detail,there is absolutely no need for alarm,” says Thomas.

“It is better that the Ministry releases the data in a way that gives the most helpful and accurate indication about how school’s are performing, rather than leaving others to crudely interpret the data or to speculate with inadequate information,” says Thomas.

“Good reporting would mean, among other things, that the data is adjusted to account for pupils’ socio-economic background, and that pupils’ progress, not just pupils’ raw test scores are reported.”


ENDS

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