Assessing the Variance in Pupil Attainment: How Important is the School Attended?

26 Pages Posted: 12 Mar 2018

See all articles by David Wilkinson

David Wilkinson

National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR)

Alex Bryson

UCL ; National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR)

Lucy Stokes

National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR)

Abstract

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 others indicators that were not directly part of how schools were assessed.We show that schools account for a minority of the variance in pupil attainment, and the extent of the variation accounted for by the school is sensitive to the measure of pupil attainment used. In addition, we find that the majority of the explained school level variance in attainment is related to school composition. However, most of the variance in pupil attainment remains unexplained, raising questions about what other factors contribute to the variation in school performance.

Keywords: schools, school performance, pupil attainment

JEL Classification: I21

Suggested Citation

Wilkinson, David and Bryson, Alex and Stokes, Lucy, Assessing the Variance in Pupil Attainment: How Important is the School Attended?. IZA Discussion Paper No. 11372, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3137503

David Wilkinson (Contact Author)

National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR)

2 Dean Trench Street
Smith Square
London, SW1P 3HE
United Kingdom

Alex Bryson

UCL ( email )

20 Bedford Way
London, WC1H 0AL
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://https://iris.ucl.ac.uk/iris/browse/profile?upi=ABRYS65

National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR) ( email )

2 Dean Trench Street
Smith Square
London, SW1P 3HE
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://www.niesr.ac.uk/staff/staffdetail.php?StaffID=307

Lucy Stokes

National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR)

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
9
Abstract Views
136
PlumX Metrics