The central myth of the two-tier dogma is that two school transfers are bad and this causes terrible disruption to our children’s education.
Hmm…SMS wonders why in the last OFSTED report for each of the 7 upper schools, negative effects of transition were not mentioned once? Isn’t that interesting ! OFSTED doesn’t see fit to comment yet Geoff Bent (Educational Official with responsibility for School Improvement) believes that these transitional dips are worth changing a whole school system for.
What complete and utter nonsense. There is no evidence that two transitions are any worse than one transition ultimately in pupils’ lives.
Two transitions managed well from small lowers to medium-sized middles to human-sized uppers are much less damaging than one harsh change from a small primary to a massive secondary of around 2000 pupils. That is precisely why the Plowden Report (1967) encouraged school system change to three-tier education in the first place: the sizes of schools match pupils’ development stage.
The second myth being propagated is that GCSE choices are terribly difficult as Year 9s are in a new school. This again, has no evidence to support it. GCSE choices are always tricky whatever system you have. They are dependent on school, teacher, pupil, the time of the day you ask a 14 year old what they want to do with their lives…
Show us the evidence that this is any worse in three-tier than two-tier.
SMS says focus resources on communication between schools to manage transitions well. If they can’t manage this now, how on earth are they going to manage the advanced communication needed during the massive disruption that our school system will face should we decide unwisely to change to two-tier.