Author Archives: James Coombs

Lies, damned lies and the Tory manifesto on Education

To quote Mark Twain, There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics. Perhaps it’s time to replace the last of these with political manifestos. In April the government opened consultation on the way they capture educational outcomes … Continue reading

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The myth of ‘grammar school standard’ exposed in five and a half minutes.

Why are the results of tests used to decide who attends publicly funded schools withheld from the public?  Watch the film and find out. Click here to see the film. 

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Will poorer families benefit from the return of Grammar Schools?

On Monday the outgoing chief Ofsted inspector Sir Michael Wilshaw said, “The notion that the poor stand to benefit from the return of grammar schools strikes me as quite palpable tosh and nonsense” (gov.uk, Sept 2015).  In a House of … Continue reading

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Proposed annexation of Devon

The Rt Hon Nicky Morgan Education Secretary The Government London 13 May 2016 Dear Nicky Morgan, Following the announcement that the Weald of Kent grammar school will be opening an annexe in Sevenoaks, I’m delighted about the additional choice this … Continue reading

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Einstein on SATs

Einstein captured the issue in a single sentence.  “Sometimes what counts can’t be counted, and what can be counted doesn’t count.”  With Maths in particular it’s possible to get very good marks in standardised tests just by applying various methods … Continue reading

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Schools Adjudicator to ban complaints from campaign groups

I am a proscribed organisation. I wasn’t even aware of the fact until I read Fiona Millar’s article for Guardian, School admissions, the dodgy practices need to stop.   Schools Adjudicator Dr Elizabeth Passmore has recommendation that ‘campaign groups’ should be … Continue reading

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“wholly or mainly …”

The Academies Act 2010 mandates that Academy schools, “provide education for pupils who are wholly or mainly drawn from the area in which the school is situated.”  To see how that works for Reading’s seven Academy secondary schools here’s an … Continue reading

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Information Security Policy

1. INTRODUCTION TRAK will be undertaking research, scholarship and learning and is heavily dependent on using information in whatever form and wherever it exists.  Because of its importance, we recognise that this organisation must protect its information assets.  We will … Continue reading

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