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Peer effects and pupil attainment - evidence from secondary school transition

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It is a common belief that children will thrive if educated amongst better class and schoolmates. This belief guides many parents in their choice of school and has many important implications for policy on school choice and organisation.

A report by researchers Dr Steve Gibbons| and Dr Shqiponje Telhaj| of LSE's Centre for the Economics of Education finds it is unlikely that the balance of success or failure at school will be tipped according to whether a child attends a school alongside other high or low ability children.

In Peer Effects and Pupil Attainment: evidence from secondary school transition, the researchers use the population of state secondary school pupils in England to explore how pupil attainment at 14 respond to differences in the prior, age 11 attainments of their current school grade peergroup.

Click here to download a copy of the report| (PDF)



Press cuttings

The Observer
Moving house for your child's education 'may be pointless' (11 June)
Spending a fortune on a home because it is near a top school may be a waste of money. Your child will do almost as well no matter who their classmates are, a new study has concluded. Steve Gibbons, one of the authors of the report, said: 'Although the attainment of a child's peer-group does matter, the effects are small. His study - from the Centre for the Economics of Education at the London School of Economics - measures the impact a move of school will have on GCSE results.

posted 12 June 2006