Latest Educational News

Ethnic minority students get fewer university offers, research shows

by Guardian, July 23, 2014

Students from black and ethnic minority backgrounds are less likely to receive conditional university offers than comparable white British applicants, research from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) has shown.

The research, the most comprehensive study of its kind, looked at 50,000 Ucas applications and found that applicants from non-mixed race minority groups were significantly less likely to be offered a university place than white applicants.

How not to motivate students for their GCSEs: too much stick and not enough carrot

by Guardian, July 23, 2014

Just as one cohort of Year 11 students finish taking their GCSEs, before we know it, we'll be back into the new school year with another group students to prepare.

Many teachers will now be considering the best way to try and motivate their new Year 11 students to work hard and prepare for their exams. One commonly used strategy, by many teachers, is to draw attention to the importance of GCSEs: why they are valuable; why is it worthwhile to invest effort, time and energy in revising and practicing exams questions; what does the student get out of it?

University offers show ethnic bias

by Yorkshire Post, July 23, 2014

Ethnic minority students and those who went to a state comprehensive school are less likely to be offered a place at university than other young people, research has found.

It also suggests that women and teenagers from richer backgrounds are more likely to get an offer of a degree place.

The new study, by academics at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), analysed 2008 university applications from 50,000 individuals, all of whom were under 21 and had a minimum of two A-levels or equivalent qualifications.

The findings show that applicants from most black and ethnic minority backgrounds were less likely to receive offers from universities than their white British peers.

White British more likely to get university offers than other ethnicities

by Guardian, July 23, 2014

A new report has strengthened earlier findings that there are significant differences in university offer rates for ethnic groups, relative to white British applicants.

The research, which examines the question of ethnic differences in university offer rates using UCAS admissions data from 2008, determined that applications from 12 of the 14 minority groups included in the analysis were significantly less likely to result in an offer than applications from white British applicants.

Trojan horse inquiry was politically motivated, says former Park View chair

by Guardian, July 23, 2014

The Trojan horse investigation into an alleged plot to infiltrate Birmingham schools by Islamic hardliners was a politically motivated offensive led by Michael Gove, the former chairman of a Birmingham education trust has said.

Tahir Alam, who until his resignation last month was chairman of Park View Educational Trust, said Peter Clarke, the former Metropolitan police counter-terrorism command who led the investigation, had not even visited some of the schools mentioned in his report. The report said Alam's trust had allowed an "aggressive and intolerant" Islamic ethos in its schools.

10 inspiring teachers: as nominated by our readers

by Guardian, July 23, 2014

As the school year comes to a close, we asked you to tell us the most inspiring lesson you were taught by a teacher.

Following the viral success of a letter sent by a headteacher in Lancashire, you got in touch with all sorts of stories from the classroom.

From the funny tales about an eccentric educator to truly heartwarming comments about the ones which really made a difference, hundreds of commenters contributed to the thread. Here are the best of their stories.

'Fewer university offers' for minority groups

by BBC News, July 23, 2014

Ethnic minority students are less likely than their white British peers to receive offers from UK universities, research suggests.

A study, by the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), analysed university applications made in 2008 by 50,000 would-be students.

Degree applications from 12 minority groups analysed were "significantly" less likely to result in an offer.

Universities UK said institutions were "actively addressing" the issue.

Priority school places for poorer pupils proposed

by BBC News, July 23, 2014

Schools in England could be allowed to prioritise places for the poorest children in their area, under proposals put forward by the government.

Under a draft admissions code, children eligible for the pupil premium would have first choice on school places.

The pupil premium is extra money given to schools to help improve the attainment of disadvantaged pupils.

In 2014-15 it will be worth £1,300 for primary school pupils and £935 for secondary school students.

Student loans: what went wrong?

by Channel 4 News, July 22, 2014

MPs from the Commons business, innovation and skills select committee are sounding the alarm after finding out that government forecasts suggest that around 45 per cent of student loans taken out will never be repaid.

Under the current system, students can borrow to cover the full cost of £9,000-a-year tuition fees, and do not have to start paying back their loans until they have finished studying and are earning above £21,000 a year. Any outstanding debt is written off after 30 years.

Students beat finance staff to rent London's priciest properties

by The Courier, July 22, 2014

Properties in prime central London are increasingly being rented by wealthy students, many with international backgrounds, according to research yesterday.

Students now make up an astonishing 41 per cent of tenancies taken up in the capital’s priciest central areas, according to data from London Central Portfolio (LCP).

PUPIL NUMBERS CLIMB TO EIGHT MILLION

by Edexec, July 22, 2014

England's pupil population is set to exceed eight million for the first time in almost half a century, placing "huge pressure" on the state education system, according to The Telegraph.
Projections from the Department for Education show the number of children enrolled in state schools is expected to soar by almost a million over the next decade - hitting its highest total since the mid-70s.
The rise in the number of pupils seen between 2014 and 2023 will be equivalent to the addition of more than 1,900 schools, it emerged.

Graduate jobs up but posts unfilled

by The Courier, July 22, 2014

Employers are struggling to to find candidates for almost one in four positions due to a gap in what graduates can offer and the skills, knowledge and attitudes needed, according to new research.

The Association of Graduate Recruiters' (AGR) summer survey reveals that UK employers are predicting a 17% increase in available graduate vacancies this year, with many industries seeing a growth in demand for university leavers.

How can I help my teenage daughter feel less stressed?

by Nottingham Post, July 22, 2014

Q "My 15-year-old daughter's just finished her exams, yet she still seems very stressed because of other things going on in her life, like the way she looks, her results, and the future generally. What's the best way I can help her?"

A Shelley Davidow, author of Raising Stress-Proof Kids, says: "Being 15 isn't easy. Couple that with exam stress and your teen could be at the end of her tether.

Nicky Morgan to follow Gove policies on free schools and exam system

by Guardian, July 22, 2014

Nicky Morgan, the new education secretary, has pledged to carry on the work of Michael Gove by radically expanding free schools, supporting unqualified teachers and keeping changes to the exam system, despite the unpopularity of her predecessor with teachers.

Many in the education establishment rejoiced at the departure of Gove and were hoping the reshuffle would lead to Morgan slowing down or halting some of the government's most controversial changes.

Student loan system is almost financially unworkable, say MPs

by Guardian, July 22, 2014

The entire student loan system is nearing a point where it is financially unworkable, the group of MPs in charge of scrutinising university policy has found.

In a scathing report, the Commons business committee called for an urgent review of the system, amid predictions the government is heading towards a multibillion-pound black hole in the funding of universities.

Extremist? Steiner schools are no such thing

by Guardian, July 22, 2014

Laura McInerney compares Steiner schools to religious fundamentalist schools based on the fact that "views [in Steiner schools] also fall outside 'the norm'" (Trojan horse: why some 'extremists' are more acceptable than others, 17 June). This misses the point. The educational practices in our schools may have been created as a result of the personal insights of Rudolf Steiner, but they have endured because their effectiveness has been shown over nearly 100 years.

Why are so few exam cheating claims upheld?

by Guardian, July 22, 2014

How seriously are Ofqual and the exam boards taking whistleblower allegations of exam cheating and malpractice? The question springs to mind after we received a freedom of information response showing that only one in seven cases reported to Ofqual over the past two years have been upheld. Even when guilt is established, investigation reports and outcomes are usually kept secret.

Last month, we revealed Ofqual's first response to our FOI request, showing it had received 73 complaints of exam and coursework malpractice by teachers, schools, colleges and the boards themselves since April 2012. Ofqual said then that it did not have information on the complaints' outcomes.

Dear Ms Morgan: don't try to drive a wedge between teachers and parents

by Guardian, July 22, 2014

Dear Ms Morgan

You've inherited one of the most powerful jobs in the country. This runs counter to the myth put about by your predecessor that the secretary of state for education is a victim in the throes of being suffocated by "the blob". With Michael Gove's demotion to Minister for Twisting Tory MPs' Arms (special responsibility, schmoozing Paul Dacre), you'll be able to see just how much of a myth it is.

Why Welsh should be taught in British schools

by Guardian, July 22, 2014

Last weekend I took part in a festival called Gwyl Arall in my home in north Wales, where I gave a talk in Welsh (well actually, half Welsh – the organisers were kind enough to make allowances for my deteriorating skills). When I told friends in England what I was doing, many responded as though I’d just announced I was travelling to the Acropolis to deliver a sermon in ancient Greek. “People still speak Welsh?” is a common refrain all Cymrys living in England are accustomed to hearing.

UK graduate jobs 'recover but posts left unfilled'

by BBC News, July 22, 2014

There has been a significant increase in the number of graduate jobs in the UK but many employers are struggling to fill skilled posts, a survey says.

The Association of Graduate Recruiters (AGR) predicted there would be 17% more graduate jobs available during 2013-14.

However, its summer survey of 189 top employers found nearly a quarter had been unable to fill posts last year.

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