Dr Tom Perry

Dr Tom Perry

School of Education

Contact details

School of Education
University of Birmingham
Edgbaston, Birmingham
B15 2TT, United Kingdom

Tom is an education researcher, lecturer and former school teacher working to foster research- and evidence-informed policy and practice in education. His research and teaching centres on school improvement and educational leadership, equipping school and system leaders at all levels to use research and evidence for school improvement. Tom is a nationally-recognised expert in quantitative research and secondary data analysis.

Tom’s current work and affiliations include:

  • Programme Leader and Lecturer, MA School Improvement and Educational LeadershipUniversity of Birmingham
  • Research Associate, Centre for the Use of Research and Evidence in Education (CUREE)
  • Editorial board member, Educational Review
  • Associate Analyst, UK Government Department for Education(Quantitative Research and Secondary Data Analysis specialism)
  • Fellow, Higher Education Academy
  • Professional Affiliate, Chartered College of Teaching 

Find out more about Tom’s work and publications on his personal website: www.thomasperry.education


  • PhD Education, University of Birmingham
  • PGCE – Secondary Business Education, University of Warwick
  • MSc Economics, University of Leicester
  • BSc Economics, University of Leicester


Tom has an academic background in economics and a professional background in teaching. He has over 10 years of experience teaching a large range of ages and groups from early years children to PhD students and headteachers. Tom did his PGCE at secondary level, specialising in teaching economics and business before spending 4 years as a KS2 classroom teacher, mostly in Birmingham and Sandwell. Tom joined the University of Birmingham School of Education as a PhD Education student in 2012. He started teaching on the MA School Improvement and Educational Leadership (SIEL) programme in 2013 and has since held positions as a research fellow and teaching fellow. He is now a lecturer in educational leadership and leader of the MA SIEL programme. Tom has also been a research manager at the Centre for the Use of Research and Evidence in Education (CUREE), where he is still a research associate.


Doctoral research

PhD title
PERRY, T. (2016). The validity, interpretation and use of school value-added measures (Ph.D. thesis, University of Birmingham, School of Education). Available: http://etheses.bham.ac.uk/6773/ Funding: Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) (Studentship with enhanced Advanced Quantitative Methods Stipend) Tom’s PhD research was on school value-added measures. He examined the validity of the value-added method in relation to its uses in education policy, research and practice. The core research concern was the various threats to measure validity and the robustness of the method to evaluate whether various areas of application are justified.


Tom’s areas of specialist expertise include research- and evidence-informed policy and practice in education, research and evaluation design, quantitative methods and data analysis, school value-added (‘Progress’) measures, teacher evaluation, and school effects on wider (‘non-cognitive’) outcomes.

Tom’s research to date includes:

  • Formative and summative evaluations of education policies and programmes;
  • reviewing evidence (systematic and rapid assessment) for education policies and practices;
  • designing monitoring and evaluation approaches for large school improvement (e.g. DfE SSIF) programmes;
  • examining key measures and evidence used in education policy;
  • evaluating school improvement and school effectiveness evidence and methodology;
  • researching the use of quasi-experimental (regression discontinuity) research designs;
  • examining how schools and policy makers can collect evidence relating to wider pupil outcomes (such as attitudes to learning); and
  • understanding how policy-makers, teachers, parents and school leaders do and should use evidence and research.

Other activities

  • Editorial board member for Educational Review
  • DfE Associate Analyst pool member (Quantitative Research and Secondary Data Analysis specialism)
Tom has reviewed for British Educational Research Journal, Educational Review, Review of Education, the LINK journal, the Journal of Professional Capital and Community, and Harvard Education Press.


Journal Articles

Perry, T. (2018). ‘Phantom’ Compositional Effects in English School Value-Added Measures: The Consequences of Random Baseline Measurement Error. Research Papers in Education. https://doi.org/10.1080/02671522.2018.1424926.

Perry, T., Davies, P. & Qiu, T. (2017). Great Grade Expectations? The Role of Pupil Expectations in Target Setting. International Journal of Educational Research. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijer.2017.10.010

Perry, T. (2017). Inter-method reliability of school effectiveness measures: a comparison of value-added and regression discontinuity estimates. School Effectiveness and School Improvement. available: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/09243453.2016.1203799

Morris, R & Perry, T (2017). Reframing the English Grammar Schools Debate. Educational Review. Available: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00131911.2016.1184132

Perry, T. (2016). English Value-Added Measures: Examining the Limitations of School Performance Measurement. British Educational Research Journalhttp://dx.doi.org/10.1002/berj.3247

Published Book Chapters

Rogers, K. I. & Perry, T. (2015). Exploring the Impact of Sentencing Factors on Sentencing Domestic Burglary. Exploring Sentencing Practice in England and Wales. England: Palgrave

Conference Papers and Presentations 

Perry, T. & Crisp, B. (2017) Embedding Learning through the Arts in the Curriculum: Lessons from the Paul Hamlyn Foundation Teacher Development Fund Pilot Evaluation. British Educational Research Association Conference, Brighton. 5th to 7th September 2017. (Presentation)

Davies, P., Perry, T. & Brady, J. (2017) Using video clubs to developing teachers’ thinking and practice in feedback and dialogic teaching. 17th Biennial EARLI Conference, Tampere, Finland. 29th August to 2nd September 2017. (Presentation)

Perry, T. (2016). School Effects on Pupil Attitudes to Learning and Schools: Value-added and Regression Discontinuity Estimates. 29th ICSEI Congress 2016. Glasgow, Scotland. (Presentation)

Perry, T. (2015). Measures of school effectiveness: a test of inter-method reliability. 16th Biennial EARLI Conference 2015. Limassol, Cyprus. (Presentation)

Perry, T. (2014). Value-added and Accountability: Fit for Purpose?, British Educational Research Association Conference, London. 16th-19th September 2014. (Presentation)

Perry, T. (2014). Measuring School Effectiveness: An Introduction. In: BARRIE, R., MORRIS, R., PERRY, T. & HAND, M., eds. Education Doctoral Research Conference, 2013 University of Birmingham. School of Education, University of Birmingham. (Conference Proceedings)

Selected Reports

Perry, T., Cordingley, P., Johns, P., Bradbury, M. (2018) International Review of Teacher Evaluation Systems: Executive Summary, Main Report, Technical Report and System Case Studies. Prepared for the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB). (Review reports currently not in the public domain)

Cordingley, P., Greany, T., Crisp, B., Seleznyov, S., Bradbury, M., & Perry, T. (2018). Developing Great Subject Teaching: Rapid Evidence Review of Subject-Specific Continuing Professional Development in the UK. Wellcome Trust. Retrieved from http://www.curee.co.uk/node/5032

CureeE (2017). External Evaluation of the ENTHUSE Partnership Programme (EPP) - Final Report, STEM Learning. Retrieved from: https://www.stem.org.uk/sites/default/files/pages/downloads/ENTHUSE-partnerships-programme-final-report.pdf

Davies, P., Perry, T. & Kirkman, J. (2017). IRIS Connect: Developing classroom dialogue and formative feedback through collective video reflection Evaluation report and executive summary. Retrieved from https://educationendowmentfoundation.org.uk/public/files/EEF_Project_Report_IRIS.pdf

Curee (2016). Paul Hamlyn Foundation Teacher Development Fund Pilot Evaluation – Interim Report

Perry, T. (2013). Graydin Evaluation Report, Project Oracle, University of Birmingham

View all publications in research portal


Selected Media Impact

PERRY, T. (2018). School progress measures are a missed opportunity for a fairer and more informative approach. Social Sciences Birmingham Blog. Available: https://blog.bham.ac.uk/socialsciencesbirmingham/2018/05/25/school-progress-measures-are-a-missed-opportunity-for-a-fairer-and-more-informative-approach/

BBC RADIO (2018) Expert interview for BBC Radio 4 More or Less programme for a feature on school progress measures (programme to be aired in April).

ROBERTSON, A. (2018) How Progress 8 disguises grammar school pupils’ true performance. News Report - Schools Week. Available: https://schoolsweek.co.uk/how-progress-8-disguises-grammar-school-pupils-true-attainment/

PERRY, T. (2018) Progress 8 is biased towards grammar schools – here’s the solution. Expert Piece - Schools Week. Available: https://schoolsweek.co.uk/progress-8-is-biased-towards-grammar-schools-heres-the-solution/

SANDERSON, D (2018) Education undervalued in Scotland, teachers say. The Times. 3rd January 2018. Available:
(Times article based on survey results from CUREE international teacher professionalism comparative research)

PERRY, T. (2017) How much confidence should we place in a progress measure? SSAT Blog. Available:

PERRY, T. (2017) Why new school performance tables tell us very little about school performance, The Conversation. Available: https://theconversation.com/why-new-school-performance-tables-tell-us-very-little-about-school-performance-71235

PERRY, T. and MORRIS, R. (2016) Time for an honest debate about grammar schools. The Conversation. Available: https://theconversation.com/time-for-an-honest-debate-about-grammar-schools-62370