Leader magazineASCL - Association of School and College Leaders

In the news

Diploma expert

The Independent TES and Sec Ed have this autumn all published commentary pieces by John Dunford on ASCL's views on the way forward for diplomas, especially in regard to the future of A levels. Funding remains a major concern, John emphasised, and this is one initiative in which the Government cannot afford to cut corners. "There is too much at stake to get it wrong," he said.

New minimum targets

ASCL has been strongly critical of the new minimum target for schools - 30 per cent of all students achieving five good GCSEs by 2012 - announced by Gordon Brown in a speech on 31 October. In the Times, John Dunford said: "Improvement trends, not just raw results, must be taken into account when judging the performance of teachers and schools."

In the Independent, he added that, while school and college leaders also had high aspirations for students, to judge schools on "figures plucked out of the air" was not the answer.


ACSL defended schools' record against media claims that truancy was at a ten-year high (according to the Daily Mirror), following publication in October of the latest absence statistics. ASCL was at pains to point out that unauthorised absence is not one in the same as truanting.

As Deputy General Secretary Martin Ward said in the Times: "The increase in unauthorised absences shows that schools are getting tougher on attendance by refusing to authorise student absences which are not absolutely necessary."

The Daily Mirror, Guardian and Telegraph also carried ASCL's rebuttal.

© 2021 Association of School and College Leaders | Designed with IMPACT