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ERIC Number: ED502439
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2007
Pages: 116
Abstractor: As Provided
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-8447-8931-3
Playing for Success: An Evaluation of its Long Term Impact. Research Report RR844
Sharp, Caroline; Chamberlain, Tamsin; , Morrison, Jo; Filmer-Sankey, Caroline
National Foundation for Educational Research
The "Playing for Success" (PfS) initiative is targeted on underachieving young people. It aims to contribute to raising educational standards, especially in numeracy and literacy, bringing the attainment levels of lower achieving pupils closer to the average expected for their age. This study set out to consider whether there was any evidence of long term changes in pupils' performance in National Curriculum Assessments (NCA) associated with attending a PfS Centre. It also aimed to gather information on the strategies adopted by PfS Centres to encourage schools to capitalise on the learning gains achieved by pupils attending PfS. The statistical analysis indicated that: (1) In Key Stages 2, 3 and 4, low attainers who attended PfS Centres did better than expected and higher attainers did less well than expected in NCAs (except in respect of English in Key Stage 4, where no statistically significant difference was found); (2) In Key Stage 4, pupils who had attended PfS made greater progress in maths when compared to similar pupils that did not attend. The difference was equivalent to one in seven PfS pupils attaining one higher grade in maths GCSE (General Certificate of Secondary Education) than expected. PfS pupils also made greater progress overall at GCSE; (3) In Key Stage 2, pupils who attended PfS made less progress in English; no statistically significant impact was found in Key Stage 3; and (4) An analysis of the progress achieved by pupils attending each Centre identified eight PfS Centres that had performed significantly better than other Centres on at least two of six NCA outcome measures. The qualitative analysis of "more effective" Centres indicated that: (1) Centres and partner schools were focusing on the details of liaison and good practice that provided a well targeted, high quality learning experience during the course and facilitated transfer of learning after the pupils had left; and (2) Partnership working between Centres and schools was critical, before, during and after pupils attended the PfS programme. Overall findings from the statistical analysis employed in this study present a mixed picture. However, rather than see this as evidence of a lack of impact at Key Stage 2 and 3, the contribution of the qualitative analysis suggests that longer term progress should be viewed as a shared responsibility between Centres and schools. Recommendations for those managing PfS at local and national levels as well as for PfS Centres and their partner schools include: (1) Government, local authorities and sponsors should continue to support PfS with further consideration given to the opportunities for pupils to transfer their learning from PfS to other contexts; (2) Given that this study has found evidence of greater long term impact among lower-attaining pupils, Centres may wish to reconsider their selection criteria; (3) Local authorities and Centre Managers should consider carrying out their own studies of longer term progress; and (4) PfS should share information about best practice in contributing to longer term impact. Three appendixes are included: (1) Procedure and Approach to Quantitative Data Analysis; (2) PfS and Comparison Groups' Background Characteristics; and (3) Multilevel Models. (Contains 16 footnotes, 9 figures and 8 tables.)
National Foundation for Educational Research. The Mere, Upton Park, Slough, Berkshire, SL1 2DQ, UK. Tel: +44-1753-574123; Fax: +44-1753-637280; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: National Foundation for Educational Research
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A