Sixth Form Education

Education written question – answered on 3rd July 2012.

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Photo of Alex Cunningham Alex Cunningham Labour, Stockton North

To ask the Secretary of State for Education how many schools with a sixth form success rate of less than 80 per cent were graded (a) outstanding and (b) good by Ofsted in the last two years.

Photo of Nick Gibb Nick Gibb Minister of State (Education)

This question is a matter for Ofsted. HM Chief Inspector, Sir Michael Wilshaw, has written to the hon. Gentleman, and a copy of his response has been placed in the House Libraries.

Letter from Richard Brooks, dated 25 June 2012

Your recent parliamentary question has been passed to me for response.

Success rates data for school sixth forms are under development. In line with the Code of Practice for Official Statistics, these are currently classified as experimental statistics. They are published in order to involve users and stakeholders in their development as their reliability and accuracy is being improved.

Experimental statistics; covering the 2009/10 academic year were released by The Young People's Learning Agency on 5 March 2012. They were published following a data checking exercise with schools. However, only about half the schools made returns to adjust their success rates, so the figures are not robust enough to be used for comparative purposes.

The statistics released showed, at a headline level, the proportion of young people that start a qualification in an institution and achieve it by the end of the required period of study.

Since 2009/10 further work has been taking place to improve quality. No data have yet been released to cover either the 2010/11 or 2011/12 academic years.

School sixth form success rates have not as yet been used as evidence in inspection by Ofsted inspectors. In the academic year 2009/10, there were 24 schools judged outstanding for their overall effectiveness and 76 schools judged good for their overall effectiveness that had sixth form success rates (on the basis of the experimental statistics) of less than 80%.

During the same year Ofsted inspected 888 secondary schools including 617 sixth forms. No generalisations can be drawn between these success rates and the overall effectiveness judgement made on section 5 inspections.

Statistics covering the outcomes of all inspections carried out in each academic year can be found at:

The most recent official statistics release covering the outcomes of maintained school inspections carried out between 1 January 2012 and 31 March 2012 was released on 12 June 2012 and can be accessed at the same link.

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