Saturday, April 18, 2009

Gotta Laugh

One of the few laughs that DS and I have been getting out of this review, (and believe me, DS's humour is happily dark as a rule: Me at supper: "I think Susan Boyle sings so well because of all the suffering she's experienced". DS: "Well that should mean you sound fantastic, but you don't"), has been trying to work out the maths that is evidenced in quite a few of the responses to the Home Education Review by the Local Authorities.

Take Lancashire's response by way of but one example:

Q13 Total Number of Home Educated Children (Registered with LA)

Q14 Total (Non-registered with LA)
Not known

Q15 Are these figures accurate or based on estimates?

Q19 How confident is the local authority in the accuracy of this data?
Very confident

Q21 What proportion (as a percentage) of your home educated population is statemented for SEN? (please state whether accurate or estimate)
5% accurate

Q22 What proportion (as a percentage) of your home educated population is non-statemented for SEN (please state whether accurate or estimate)
95% accurate

Q23 What proportion (as a percentage) of your home educated population is from Gypsy, Roma and Traveller heritage (please state whether accurate or estimate)

25% accurate


So how exactly do these figures stack up? I guess it might be me as I am dozy this am and any residual ability to calculate accurately goes out the window when tired, BUT if the total number of HEors are not known about, how can they be sure of their percentages of, for example, SENs? Or do they mean their figure for SENs is only 5% accurate? Or are they only using the numbers of children they do know about? In which case, what sort of child is 5% of 479 children?

In defence of their figures, I guess it would be understandable that such a child would have an SEN.


Firebird said...

Having decided not to even guess at the unknowns it looks like they then answered the other questions as if 'not known' = zero.

They could in theory have rounded the percentages to the nearest whole number BUT 5% and 25% certainly LOOK like they just made them up. With 479 children what are the odds that exactly one quarter are Gypsy, Roma and Traveller heritage? I know it's not impossible, but ....

Carlotta said...

Yes re the dubious nature of 5 and 25%.

And yes, re the zero assumption, given that they are so confident that their percentages are right. But then, they do admit in effect, that they don't know if the number of unknowns is zero, so this all rather scuppers this option.

They must therefore only be talking about the accuracy of the figures concerning the HEors they do know about, although this is not specificied as a qualification in the question, as far as I can tell and should therefore rightly be answered as an estimate.

Anonymous said...

Maybe they realised what stupid questions they had to answer, and decided to put any old rot down.


Tania and Andrew on Pegasus said...

thats 24 kids with SEN and 120 G/R/T.
I was riled by the use of the word' missing' when they describes families who move house to a new locality!!