“Today’s results show EBacc entries continuing to plateau, confirming that the Department for Education must abandon the delusional expectation that 90% of young people will take it. Teachers and leaders, who know their students better than ministers ever could, continue to reject the policy.

“Since 2010 too many young people have been pushed on to inappropriate subject pathways and denied the opportunity to thrive in other valuable and challenging subjects. The EBacc policy is squeezing subjects such as Art, Music, Technology and Drama out of the curriculum, and must be stopped.

“The statistical release includes data on the grade 5 ‘strong pass’ or above in English and maths. The strong pass applies to school performance measures, rather than what a student needs to achieve to pass: grade 4.  The introduction of the standard pass/strong pass is a confused and confusing measure that conflates students’ grades with school accountability measures in ways that are disheartening to students.

“And research shows that the accountability measures used to create the league tables published by the DfE are not fit for purpose – they are not an accurate or reliable indicator of school effectiveness. Schools and colleges are worth so much more than data alone can ever demonstrate and as such league tables based purely on data will never, with any tweaking, be able to define or measure a provider. The DfE should stop using accountability measures in this flawed, damaging and inaccurate way.”