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Last Updated: Thursday, 19 January 2006, 17:48 GMT
The value of school league tables
Children in a classroom
More or Less
Thursday, 19 January, 2006
BBC Radio 4, 1500 GMT

On More or Less this week we looked at the value added tables for secondary schools published this week.

Click here to have your say

Our question is do they really show which schools add most value? And if they do not, what is the point?

If you want to know how much value a school adds, the method seems simple. Find out how good children are at age 11, compare that to how good they are at age 16, and then compare whatever improvement there has been to that in other schools.

But the way it is done at present suggests that the comparison may not tell you anything.

Find out why by listening to the programme.

Life expectancy

Also this week, the debate about whether left-handedness is associated with dying younger.

Babies

And if you have already had two boys, or two girls, but rather fancy a bit more variety, what are the chances that your next child will be different?

One figure you can find easily on the web is that if you have already had two of a kind the chance the third one will be the same is 70%. Is it true?

'Bad numbers'

Plus an essay by Joel Best, author of Damned Lies and Statistics, on whether the bad numbers that seem to flourish in the news are really the result of lying.

BBC Radio 4's More or Less was broadcast on Thursday, 19 January, 2006 at 1500 GMT.


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SEE ALSO
School results tables under fire
19 Jan 06 |  Education

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