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ERIC Number: ED502600
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2005
Pages: 169
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 16
ISBN: ISBN-1-8447-8482-7
Vulnerable Children's Access to Examinations at Key Stage 4. Research Report RR639
Kendall, Sally; Johnson, Annie; Martin, Kerry; Kinder; Kay
National Foundation for Educational Research
This research project was commissioned by the Department for Education and Skills (DfES) in 2004 to examine barriers to vulnerable children accessing examinations at the end of key stage 4 and to identify strategies employed to overcome these barriers. Key groups of vulnerable children identified by the DfES included: (1) Looked-after children; (2) Pupils unable to attend school because of medical needs; (3) Gypsy/Traveller pupils; (4) Asylum seekers; (5) Young carers; (6) School refusers; (7) Teenage parents; (8) Young offenders; (9) Pupils with special educational needs (SEN); (10) Excluded pupils; (11) Minority ethnic pupils; and (12) Children whose parents choose to educate them at home. Interviews were conducted with a range of stakeholders working with vulnerable children, as well as with exam-related agencies and organisations. Research was conducted between June 2004 and February 2005, and was divided into two phases. Phase 1 provided an overview of existing research evidence. During Phase 2, a telephone survey was conducted with a range of key stakeholders from 40 local education authorities (LEAs) working with vulnerable children, to explore their insights into supporting young people's access to examinations. The research highlighted barriers that prevent or increase the difficulties surrounding vulnerable young people's access to examinations, focusing on difficulties at a number of levels. The study also demonstrated that, where vulnerable children have successfully participated in the examinations system, the key to their success lay in flexible approaches adopted by support staff and schools, and effective communication between providers. Six appendices are included: (1) Overview of Key Issues for Vulnerable Groups; (2) Key Contacts and Useful Documents; (3) Access Arrangements; (4) NAA Exam Cycle; (5) Small-Scale Survey Regarding Pupils with SEN; and (6) Vulnerable Children's Access to Examinations and the 14-19 White Paper. (Contains 13 footnotes and 14 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: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: National Foundation for Educational Research
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom