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Louise Haigh: Do you agree with the evidence in the previous session that it should be based solely or at least largely on progress rather than on a fresh value?
Louise Haigh: Do you think that it is dangerous to enforce this progress measure retrospectively?
Louise Haigh: But given that progress 8 is not due to come in until 2016, is it right that it should measure schools back to 2014?
Louise Haigh: In the earlier session, we heard that we have little evidence of which formal intervention works best. There are anecdotal examples of academies that have improved, but clearly we cannot say across the board that academisation is the best answer for all schools. What is clear is that teaching and leadership is the most important factor in improving schools. Would you all therefore say whether...
Louise Haigh: So probably no overall impact.
Louise Haigh: So you think that an extra layer of accountability will act as a further disincentive to attracting headteachers into the most challenging areas.
Louise Haigh: Do we need to be heaping further challenges on to what are already the most challenging schools through another accountability measure?
Louise Haigh: Annie, you mentioned the inter-agency barriers that still exist. Could you confirm that the Bill actually does nothing to address any of those barriers other than creating bigger agencies? Secondly, to the whole panel, do you think that this will actually restrict choice for adopters in terms of agencies at a local level?
Louise Haigh: In the written evidence, we were told that the best way to achieve permanence is with low staff turnover and support from the best and most appropriate workforce. Do you think those are accurate descriptions of the environment that local authorities and adoption agencies have found themselves in during the last few years?
Louise Haigh: The British Association of Social Workers has said that the Bill will contribute to demoralising social workers. Do you agree?
Louise Haigh: Given the evidence we have heard today, should not the definition of “coasting” be based completely on value added and measures such as progress 8, rather than the threshold proposed in the regulations?
Louise Haigh: Sorry, but the definition of “coasting” contains a threshold and a progress measure. My question is, should the threshold not be removed completely from the definition?
Louise Haigh: Do you accept that certain schools in certain areas will always miss out on that threshold?
Louise Haigh: And how does that affect morale and recruitment in those schools?
Louise Haigh: Is there any scope to include churn in the assessment? Some primary schools, in particular, have a huge level of churn of pupils and are therefore being judged on pupils they may have had for only six months or a year.
Louise Haigh: No one is suggesting that we lower the ambition for the most deprived pupils in our country; what worries me is the impact that the Bill may have on morale in the teaching profession. As we have heard, recruitment and retention are a problem across the board in teaching. Does the Minister not think that the Bill should have measures to tackle that growing issue?
Louise Haigh: We have heard that a dual accountability system will almost certainly damage morale.
Louise Haigh: The Secretary of State judges schools; this introduces yet another layer and confuses accountability mechanisms even further.
Louise Haigh: You were not here to listen to most of the witnesses this morning, but as Peter Kyle said, we heard time and again that recruitment and retention of teachers is a serious problem, both for entry-level positions and in senior leadership. That is a major factor in the quality of a school’s education and there is nothing in the Bill to tackle it.
Louise Haigh: Yet it is a major issue in our education system. Sir Michael Wilshaw himself has said so.