Tag Archives: schools

The truancy map of England and Wales (infographics evaluation)

A new blog-theme I’m getting into  – A critical look at infographics – Mostly going to focus on education for the coming months…

In 2012 Simon Rogers from The Guardian put together this Interactive truancy map of England and Wales which was constructed by ‘mashing together’ two data sets from the Department for Education: truancy figures and numbers of penalty notices issued to parents and carers.

Truancy in England map

(NB – The still doesn’t do it justice, click on the links above to get the full utility)

 What I like about this infographic

  • It’s representative – It appears to show data from all 152 LEAs in England and all 32 in wales.

  • The Trauncy data is clearly labelled – Total percent of persistent absentees 2010/11

  • It’s very easy to compare across LEAs – given that we are given the percentages and these are clearly colour coded.

  • You get a lot more detail when you hover over each area, including the option to download the data as a fusion table.

What could be improved

  • I’m not sure when the data for penalty notices was collected

  • The graphic doesn’t allow you to see changes in truancy rates over time.

  • The infograph doesn’t allow you to easily see if there is a correlation between penalty notices issued and truancy rates, and in any case, IF the years are the same this would probably be conincidental anway.

  • The infograph begs you to do more with slighlty different data to explore the above relationship – what you would need to do this is to include truancy data from previous years (or now later years) and show the percentage change year on year, and then compare this to the number of and type of penalty notices issued over time. Of course this alone wouldn’t allow you to attribute anything like causation.

  • It would also be informative to be able to compare these truancy rates to other local variables – the most obvious one being deprivation (FSM) indicators.

Snow Day work due to school closure…

Whatever work you set your students this snow day, this is probably how most of them will interpret it –  

Work is as follows –
  1. Lay in (as if you haven’t already done that)
  2. Buy sledge
  3. Go sledging
  4. Don’t break leg
  5. or anyone elses
  6. Have snowball fight with random people – must be random
  7. just make sure you pick people that look like they fancy a snowball fight (no ‘moany old bears)  
  8. Build snowman
  9. not a ‘rude’ snowman -that’s way too crude
  10. Go home, eat cake
  11. Engage in audio visual entertainment of your choice
  12. Make sure you watch the news reports about all those poor people that had to go to work today.