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Primary academies in England

Attendance at a primary academy leads to no discernible improvement in pupils’ test scores, according to research by Andrew Eyles, Stephen Machin and Sandra McNally. This suggests that further extension of the academies programme into primary schools is unlikely to improve education in England. The researchers note that since a majority of secondary schools in England are now academies, any further ‘academisation’ will be concentrated in the primary sector. So the time is ripe for this first comprehensive evaluation of primary academies’ effectiveness at raising pupils’ achievement. The evidence suggests that primary academies have been less effective than the disadvantaged secondary schools that thrived in the first wave of academies.

Andrew Eyles, Stephen Machin and Sandra McNally

13 December 2016     Paper Number CEPCP490

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This CentrePiece article is published under the centre's Education and skills programme.