HC Deb 05 July 1965 vol 715 cc180-1W
Mr. Derek Page

asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what steps he is taking to improve statistical data on education, and in particular, to obtain figures to enable comparison of academic achievements between segregated systems of secondary education such as that of Norfolk and comparable areas having comprehensive systems.

Mr. Crosland

The improvement of statistics of education is a continuous business which has been proceeding for some years. The Statistics Branch of my Department is being further strengthened by the appointment of additional qualified staff so that this process can be continued. There is, however, a limit to the extent of the information we can reasonably ask headmasters, local education authorities and other bodies to provide.

Statistics of examination achievements by secondary school pupils are based on an annual survey of 10 per cent. of all school leavers. The results from such a sample survey are adequate for analysis on a national basis but not always reliable for comparisons between relatively small groups. I do not contemplate an increase in the proportion of school leavers covered by this survey which is already a heavy burden on all concerned.