Latest Educational News

What are the pressures of being a modern student?

by The Guardian, September 19, 2016

With university tuition fees trebling since 2012 we’d like to hear what’s expected of students today

Going to university for the first time can be daunting. As well as adapting to a new environment and meeting new people, there are other pressures that continue right through university.

Keeping on top of work, making ends meet with limited money and getting through university without dropping out are just a few of them. With growing debt from student loans and pressure to graduate with the best possible degree to secure a job, it’s unsurprising to find more students are looking to their university’s mental health service for help.

Parents ditch education to take children on ‘global unschooling’ trip

by Metro, September 19, 2016

A family have ditched the education system to take their children on a trip around the world for a lesson in ‘global unschooling’.
Paul and Caroline King sold their home and gave up everything to live like nomads.

They found the schools in Sweden where they lived ‘too restricting’ for their liking and wanted to try a more radical approach to teaching.
Now their sons Winston, six, and Henry, four, have travelled to 26 countries, from Bali’s beaches to the ancient pyramids of Egypt.

Disruptive primary school pupils 'can cost classmates £75,000 in pay'

by Evening Standard, September 19, 2016

Classified as General.

Naughty primary school pupils can cost classmates £75,000 in lifetime earnings, a US study has found.

According to the research, a classroom with one disruptive child can lower children’s future earnings by more than 3 per cent.

Experts said badly behaved children can take up too much teacher’s time leaving the rest of the class to suffer, with the effect particularly prevalent in primary schools.

Previous studies have shown exam results could suffer if a teacher is struggling to control a pupil rather than teach the class.

School has not one but TWO pupils with higher IQ than Stephen Hawking

by, September 19, 2016

TWO 14-year-old classmates have been found to have higher IQs than genius Stephen Hawking.

Liam Gormley and Michael Gowie, both studying for their GCSEs at St Bede's Catholic College, Bristol, have both achieved outstanding scores of 162 in the IQ test for Mensa, the global society for people with high IQs.

That is higher than the renowned theoretical physicist Professor Stephen Hawking, who has an IQ of 160.

Failing Woodside Primary Academy turns Outstanding after Ofsted report

by This is Local London, September 19, 2016

A FAILING school has turned its fortunes around thanks to the “ambitious, hard-working and dedicated” children.

Woodside Primary Academy, in Wood Lane, Walthamstow, was put into special measures by Ofsted in 2012 – but has now been branded Outstanding.

Head of school, Jill Rowlings, said she was “disheartened” when joining the school five years ago – but says the new rating is also down to head teacher, Shane Tewes.

Ms Rowlings said: “In all honesty, when I first came here it was failing in all areas.

Grammar schools: a very English solution to a very English problem

by The Conversation , September 19, 2016

Classified as 11 Plus.

The government’s decision to pass new legislation for the reintroduction of grammar schools took most people by surprise and was met with outcry by quite a few working in education. Details about how these new grammar schools would work in practice are still vague – in particular how they would avoid the traditional bias towards the middle classes. However what seems to stand out strongly in the debate is the generally negative response to this policy by the experts and even those in the Conservative Party.

Despite this, Theresa May seems determined to push ahead with her plans, quite possibly because grammar schools are simply popular with the public. The cynic might well argue that the new prime minister wants to endear herself to the electorate – and what could be more convenient than to bring back a policy which resonates strongly with aspiring middle class and working class parents.

Leading private school offers bursaries for children of parents who earn £120k a year

by Independent, September 18, 2016

Classified as General.

The headmaster admits the fees are 'unaffordable'

One of Britain's leading private schools is offering bursaries to children whose parents earn a combined salary of £120,000 because its headteacher deems the fees "unaffordable".

St Paul's School, a boys' school in London whose alumni includes former chancellor George Osborne, charges pupils £7,827 a term and £11,723 for boarding.

Grammar schools: 'fear of being left behind' will push comprehensives to select

by TES Connect, September 16, 2016

'Domino effect' of schools rushing to select is likely if proposals go ahead, sources claim
Comprehensive school headteachers will be forced to apply to select pupils on the basis of ability for "fear of being left behind", a union leader has warned.

Ministers this week set out more detail of how they will expand the number of grammar schools in England, including plans to allow existing comprehensives to select their students.

Russell Hobby, general secretary of the NAHT headteachers' union, said the majority of heads and teachers were against the government’s proposals to expand academic selection as set out in the government’s Green Paper.

But he predicted that as soon as one head decided to select their intake on the basis of academic ability, many more would be pushed into doing the same in a bid to compete.

"A large percentage of the profession are hostile to this," Mr Hobby said. "In the early days, there certainly won’t be large-scale uptake on it. But as with all these situations, it can sometimes just take one school in an area to opt for it, and other schools will fear they will be left behind and feel they have to do it or get marginalised."

Faith schools segregate kids - so why is Theresa May expanding them?

by NewStatesman, September 16, 2016

Classified as General.

Theresa May’s desire to bring back grammar schools has united the Labour party in outrage, divided the Tory party and even briefly eclipsed the pending terror that is Brexit. The Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has accused May of taking the country “back to the 1950s”.

And yet, there has been surprisingly little complaint about another plank of the Government’s education platform – faith schools.

Councils seek new powers to check on home-schooled children

by Guardian, September 16, 2016

Local Government Association wants to be able to enter homes and premises and to compel parents to register home-educated children

Council leaders are calling on the government to give them greater powers to check on the growing number of children who are apparently being home-educated – a trend that is thought to be linked to a rise in the number of illegal schools across England.

The schools watchdog Ofsted has previously said unregistered schools are exploiting the rules on home education. The Local Government Association (LGA), which represents more than 370 councils in England and Wales, wants local authorities to be given powers to enter homes and premises to check on the suitability of education being offered.

Councils call for greater powers to tackle illegal schools

by BBC, September 16, 2016

Classified as General.

Councils are calling for powers to enter houses and other premises, such as illegal schools, where home-educated children are being taught.
The Local Government Association says its ability to check if children withdrawn from schools in England and Wales are suitably educated is limited.
Currently, council officers can enter a premises only if they have specific concerns about a child's safety.
The government said it was "cracking down" on unregistered schools.

Anger as German education chief claims grammar schools only benefit better-off pupils

by Daily Mail, September 16, 2016

Classified as General.

Andreas Schleicher said UK is 'drastically overplaying' grammar benefits
Campaigners claim data from her own organisation slams current system
Comes after May unveiled £50million plans to expand selective schools

A German education chief has hit out at Theresa May’s policy on grammar schools, saying only wealthy pupils are likely to benefit.
Andreas Schleicher, of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, said the UK government was ‘dramatically overplaying’ the capacity for grammar schools to drive up academic standards and improve social mobility.

Secondary school learning slump 'can last three years'

by BBC, September 16, 2016

Classified as General.

Adolescence and boredom can turn pupils off learning for three years in early secondary school, suggests a study.
The overwhelming majority of pupils start secondary school with "initial enthusiasm" but this wanes during the first two years, figures suggest.
The proportion who "feel good about school" falls 10 percentage points to 84% between ages seven and 14, suggests a GL Assessment poll of 32,000 pupils.
Head teachers' leaders said schools were working hard to address the issue.

Exclusive: heads predict surge of private schools 'seeking switch to the state sector'

by TES, September 16, 2016

Around 20 per cent of private schools in the North might apply for state funding if selection were allowed, according to one head
Theresa May’s grammar schools revolution will lead to a surge in independent schools seeking to join the state sector, headteachers are predicting.

The government’s plan to allow an expansion of academic selection and lift the cap on faith-based admissions will make all the difference to independent schools facing an increasingly uncertain future, school leaders have told TES.

Could the best sports training be at school?

by Telegraph, September 16, 2016

If you thought blood tests to measure lactic acid, on-tap physiotherapy and video analysis were the domain only of Olympic athletes, think again.

Some independent schools are using methods that were once the preserve of national squads, and have facilities beyond the reach of many clubs and universities.

Culford School in Suffolk has performance programmes in four sports, with tennis at the forefront — there are seven GB juniors at the school.

“We have six indoor and six outdoor courts, 14 full-time tennis and two full-time strength and conditioning coaches,” says director of sport Dave Watkin. “That’s not at all typical.”

This teacher’s list of ‘101 ways to cope with stress’ is inspiring more than his students

by Metro, September 16, 2016

Classified as General.

Life is stressful.
If you’re anything like us, you’ve already slept through your alarm, lost three important things and got drenched on the way to work this morning.
Sometimes, you just want someone who’s been there to put their arm around you and tell you to just breathe for a second.
Well, this list is basically that.
Alina Ramirez, a high school student from California, shared a list of ‘101 ways to cope with stress’ on Twitter that her psychology teacher Brett Phillips gave the whole class.

A wholesale return to grammar schools would be a disaster

by Spectator, September 15, 2016

Classified as 11 Plus.

It is almost mandatory, if you want to discuss grammar schools, to swap personal histories. Here’s mine: I am the beneficiary of three generations of social mobility, three generations of academic selection. My grandfather won a free scholarship to a public school (Christ’s Hospital) and left school at 16: his family needed him to work. But his education allowed him to become achartered surveyor. Both of my parents enjoyed free, selective education in schools that now charge about £16,000 a year.

National phonics check 'too basic'

by BBC, September 15, 2016

Children can pass the phonics test with just a basic knowledge of the government's preferred system for learning to read, research suggests.
Six-year-olds have to read aloud 20 real words and 20 made-up words in the check, testing their ability to sound out words using the phonics system.
It is meant to test knowledge of the system's 85 letter combinations, but looks at only two-thirds of them.
Pupils also needed vocabulary knowledge to read the test words, the study said.

Grammar schools benefit rich, says OECD

by BBC, September 15, 2016

Classified as 11 Plus.

Grammar schools are likely to benefit wealthy families without raising overall standards, says the OECD's head of education.
Andreas Schleicher said international evidence suggested that selection was not linked to improving schools.
He said bright pupils in England were not getting enough opportunities, but grammar school tests were not reliable.
"Any kind of one-off test is likely to favour social background over true academic potential," he said.

Significance of grammar schools 'dramatically overplayed'

by BT News, September 15, 2016

Classified as 11 Plus.

The significance of grammar schools is "dramatically overplayed" and the system runs the risk of "social selection", according to an international education expert.

The significance of grammar schools is "dramatically overplayed" and the system runs the risk of "social selection", according to an international education expert.

Andreas Schleicher, of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), said it would be best to make "most schools more demanding, more rigorous" and for them all to provide "better opportunities for disadvantaged children".