Commission proposes school report card and slimmed down exams at 16

​A new school report card as part of a reformed Ofsted, slimmed down exams at 16, an “electives premium”, better SEN identification, and a 15-year strategy for education – after more than 600 witnesses and 12 months’ work, the Times Education Commission has reached its conclusions.

The final report offers a 12-point blueprint which has been backed by 10 former education secretaries and two former prime ministers.

The commission was set up to consider how education must evolve to meet challenges such as declining social mobility and wellbeing as well as developments in technology and the changing nature of work.

Fortnightly evidence sessions took place involving 22 commissioners who heard testimony from experts across the education sector and beyond. Evidence was also collected from school visits (here and abroad), youth panels, and parents focus groups.

Among the key challenges facing the education system, the commission identifies the inequalities which are “ingrained from an early age”. It calls for a significant focus on preschool education, including more finding for early years, pointing to research showing that 46% of children are not “school-ready” when they arrive at primary school.

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