Soft targets and hard facts



This week I’ve been thinking about the relationship between soft and hard data, how we value these as educators and how we manage and even measure both.

Soft data (descriptive information rather than numerical) is what we swim through every day as we go about school; this is in the outlook and behaviour of the pupils and staff: how they feel, how they work together, the feel of the people and the place. This is highly valuable information, it’s the kind of information you can sniff the minute you walk into a classroom or a school. When all of this is running smoothly, then the ground for learning is ready, waiting to be planted.

Then again, if relationships are poor; if attitudes to learning are poor and pupils are unsettled, then the foundations for learning are unstable. This is why working on improving soft data is so important and really underpins…

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