school performance

What does leadership look like in schools and does it matter for school performance?

We consider the role played by school leaders in improving pupil attainment, going beyond previous studies by exploring the leadership roles of deputy and assistant heads and classroom-based teachers with additional leadership responsibilities. Using panel data for state-funded secondary schools in England for the period 2010/11-2015/16 we find academy schools typically employ more staff in leadership roles than community schools.

Do private schools manage better?

There is a perception among some commentators and policy analysts that leadership and managerial practices in private schools are superior to those in state schools. Analysing a survey of workplaces in Britain, we find little evidence to support this contention when examining the prevalence of modern human resource management (HRM) practices in schools. Rather, the evidence points to greater use of such practices in state schools. Those practices are correlated with improved school performance in the state sector, but not in the private sector.

Assessing the variance in pupil attainment: how important is the school attended?

We explore the variation in pupil attainment at the end of secondary schooling in England. The paper links data on all schools and all pupils within these schools to analyse the role of the school in accounting for this variation. We analyse a number of different indicators of pupil attainment including value added between the end of primary and secondary schooling and attainment levels at the end of secondary schooling. We examine indicators that were the focus of the school accounting framework as well as other indicators that were not directly part of how schools were assessed.