Foster And Brown Research


What we are up to

The GCC 2018 OPS is open Wednesday 17th January

The Gloucestershire schools Online Pupil Survey (OPS) is open from Wednesday 17th January until Friday 23rd March 2018.

All signed-up schools should have received their instructions via email from the County Council. Please contact us if you have not received your email.

It is not too late to sign up! Contact Paule to add your school to the 95% of Gloucestershire schools signed up this year.

Details about our Online surveys »  

LodeSeeker just got better!

LodeSeeker™ now has a school dashboard which gives an overview of results, trends and response statistics at login time along with quick access to summary reports. Originally LodeSeeker™ was developed to provide centrally-based analysts with a detailed view of the responses from our surveys, including filters for drilling down and comparing data in the most flexible way. Over the years the number of filters and report types has increased and can sometimes be daunting for new users. The dashboard will give schools quick access to information important to them whilst still being able to continue to delve deeper into their data using the Advanced Search facility. Here you can read an overview of LodeSeeker™ and examples of analysis resulting from 2016 data as a pdf.

More details » Overview (pdf) »

OPS helping to understand self-harm

Gloucestershire OPS results were used as part of a study investigating the incidence of suicide and self-harm in adolescents in England - published in The Lancet 12th December 2017 - Incidence of suicide, hospital-presenting non-fatal self-harm, and community-occurring non-fatal self-harm in adolescents in England (the iceberg model of self-harm): a retrospective study Guelayov G, Casey D, McDonald K.C, Foster P, Pritchard K, Wells C, Clements C, Kapur N, Ness J, Waters K, Hawton K

Shaping the future of Education

in Gloucestershire

We will be exhibiting on the 7th February when Shaping the future of education in gloucestershire is delighted to be returning to Cheltenham racecourse for their 2018 Customer Conference.

Here's more interesting stuff »»»

Interesting stuff

Scrub up on Science 2018

Scrub up on Science is an educational website providing free practical Chemistry resources to UK secondary schools. They also run an annual schools competition like this one for 2018

Their website has details of the Scrub up on Science challenge for 2018 and there are some free Chemistry resources available, including practical experiments for KS3 and KS4 in the teacher's area.

As part of British Science Week (9th - 18th March) there is a Teach the Teachers Event at Acheson and Acheson, Trowbridge on Thursday 15th March - there are 30 free places, first come first served.

Sex education in schools

On 1st March 2017, Justine Greening, Secretary of State for Education announced that she was proposing to legislate for sex education to be compulsory in all schools .

As from our 2016 Online Pupil Survey, we have included several Sex and Relationship Education (RSE) questions and are well placed to follow any impacts this legislation may have on pupil knowledge and behaviour.

Good example of school survey use

This is a really good example of how gathering data and obtaining a deep understanding of behaviour can help tackle what may appear to be intractable problems with substance abuse - read about how Iceland is stopping teen substance abuse . Our survey asks very similar questions regarding substance abuse and type of activities and our reporting software allows analysts to compare schools and identify problem areas.


A recent presentation and report on electronic cigarettes by Public Health England South West identified key messages for specialist nurses which follow the messages in this blog from Public Health England. One of the remaining questions is whether e-cigarettes are a gateway to smoking in young people. One of our survey questions is attempting to gather evidence regarding this.

OPS accuracy

For those of you who are interested in the accuracy of our results, here's some figures for Gloucestershire in 2016:

Year Group Number in database % population based on NOR (as of October 2015)
Year 4 5,257 81.4%
Year 5 (new optional yeargroup) 3,613 58.0%
Year 6 4,898 79.6%
Year 8 5,428 83.3%
Year 10 5,156 81.5%
Year 12 in schools (not colleges) 2,674 76.5%

Statistically, that’s a confident interval of 0.28 at 95% confidence level or 0.36 at the 99% confidence level (this means if we repeated the survey over the entire population we would get the same results + or – 0.36% and we can be certain of this 99% of the time).