Ofsted’s Data Dashboard

The Data Dashboard is closing down on 30 September 2016 to be replaced by a new comparison tool. The Data Dashboard was designed for use by governors and members of the public as a means of understanding school performance and identifying priorities for improvement. Although the school comparison tool has ostensibly been created for the same audience, it now sharpens the focus with more detailed information reminiscent of the headlines in Raiseonline.

The comparison tool provides information about four key considerations - achievement, pupil destinations, absence and the workforce. Secondary school GCSE achievement data contains many of the usual headlines about attainment and progress reflected in comparison with national and local authority averages rather than the relative position of the quintiles of the Data Dashboard; much of this information is considered over the last three years. The English Baccalaureate has a higher profile than in the Data Dashboard and pupil progress data now includes value added measures and expected progress in the context of pupils’ prior attainment. Data about the achievement of disadvantaged pupils is set against that of other pupils at the school. We’ll wait another year to find out how the tool reflects the introduction of the 1-9 scale.

Secondary schools’ performance compared with similar schools is now ranked, and identifies schools within 75 miles of the school in question as well as those with a similar proportion of disadvantaged pupils. Achievement data for secondary schools with a sixth form is compared in relation to the national averages for academic attainment at A level and for vocational performance; reference to these courses includes average point scores and value added.

Samples of the achievement data available for primary schools currently shows headline measures as the proportions of pupils achieving level 4 in reading, writing and maths and progress in terms of pupils making two or more levels between Key Stage 1 and 2. It will take some time for the 2016 scaled score assessment information to appear on the comparison tool following validation. A reminder that the floor standard this year for Key Stage 2 attainment is 65% of pupils making sufficient progress to achieve the expected standard. In principle, pupils may have been offered early entry; another consideration when interpreting the data. There does not appear to be any reference to EYFS.

There are few changes in the second of the four main considerations, pupils’ attendance. This compares attendance and persistence absence with national levels in the context of the school’s characteristics. The third area is new and for secondary schools only compares pupils’ destinations including the number of those staying in education as well as a more detailed breakdown of post-16 education destinations.

In the final section, the features of the school workforce are provided for comparison. This marks a return to the days considering the implications of the schools performance in terms of value for money with information about pupil to teacher ratios and teacher salaries. The school’s funding agreements and financial statements can also be downloaded from this page.

You can find the new school comparison tool on the GOV.UK website.

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