Latest Educational News

Is it any surprise that primary teachers find it hard to cope when they are faced with this avalanche of change?

by TES, January 20, 2016

Schools are not like the latest iteration of Clash of Clans. Their effectiveness does not improve with endless upgrades
If any more proof were needed that tech rules the world, consider how nothing nowadays ever gets finished.

The role of regional schools commissioners is 'confused', say MPs

by TES, January 20, 2016

The role of the regional schools commissioner (RSC) is “confused” and “lacking in transparency”, a panel of MPs has warned. The position of commissioner has become increasingly powerful as­ the number of academies continues to grow, but the Commons education select committee believes the role remains “unclear”.

Academy scrutiny confused, say MPs

by BBC, January 20, 2016

Scrutiny of academy schools is "confused, fragmented and lacking in transparency", say MPs in a report. With more than 5,000 schools in England now academies, the system for monitoring them needs reassessment, says the Education Select Committee. The role of Regional Schools Commissioners (RSCs), appointed to approve and monitor free schools and academies, is unclear, the MPs add.

Minecraft to launch education edition

by BBC, January 19, 2016

An "education edition" of Minecraft is to be launched by Microsoft. The product will offer teachers new ways to use the world-building video game in a range of subjects.
Microsoft paid $2.5bn (£1.8bn) for Mojang, Minecraft's Swedish creator, in 2014. And late last year, it bought the four-year-old MinecraftEdu version of the game from Finland-based independent developer TeacherGaming.

GCHQ summer school will pay students £250 per week

by BBC, January 19, 2016

UK intelligence agency GCHQ has announced it will pay £250 per week to students attending its Cyber Summer Schools this year. Each course teaches students, who must be 18 or older when attending, about GCHQ's work to combat cyber-threats and helps them develop their "cyber-skills".
The schools are held at four sites in the UK, an increase from two last year.

Academy chain to scrap governing bodies

by BBC, January 19, 2016

An academy chain is scrapping the current form of governing bodies for its schools in England. The E-ACT academy group says it will replace them with "academy ambassadorial advisory bodies". These new bodies will "play a central role in celebrating the academy's achievements", E-ACT has told its school governors in a letter.

Student grant protest blocks Westminster Bridge

by BBC, January 19, 2016

Students protesting against government plans to scrap maintenance grants in England blocked Westminster Bridge for more than an hour and a half.
The demonstrators gathered outside Parliament to coincide with a debate on reversing the government's decision to replace the grants with loans.
From this autumn, means-tested grants are to be switched to loans repayable after graduation.

Just a quarter of teachers have a say over what ed tech they can use, survey shows

by TES, January 19, 2016

Only a quarter of UK teachers say they are consulted on what technology should be deployed in their classrooms, a major new survey has shown. Teachers believe that cost is the biggest factor when it comes to schools and local authorities deciding what ed tech should be used, rather than which technology has the biggest effect on student outcomes, the study shows.

'Coding lessons are good, but not enough. We need the next generation of Brunels, too'

by TES, January 19, 2016

One expert in digital training questions the emphasis on coding. Computer programming is hailed as a vital skill; so essential that coding is now a mandatory part of primary and secondary school curriculums. Teaching new skills and updating schooling to match the modern world is undoubtedly a positive step. However, is coding alone the bedrock upon which the 21st century will stand?

Teach First recruitment advert targets career-changers

by TES, January 19, 2016

Teach First has launched a new recruitment advert, as part of its first ever campaign to recruit career-changers to challenging schools. The advert is part of a three-month drive to recruit people from other professions, with schools in many areas complaining of being unable to fill posts – especially in shortage subjects such as maths and science. Teach First, which traditionally recruits high-flying graduates to train and teach in schools in disadvantaged areas, says it has been working on developing “flexible” training for those swapping to teaching from other careers.

TES at Bett 2016: Free digital special edition and live seminar programme

by TES, January 19, 2016

Are you attending Bett 2016? If so, visit our stand, download our special digital edition and take part in one of our free seminars. All the info you need is here
How can you make homework a happy experience? How do you handle a challenging class? How do you produce teaching resources that are the envy of your colleagues?
These questions – and more – will be answered in a series of TES-organised seminars, to be held at Bett, the world’s leading education-technology fair, this month. TES is the global knowledge partner for the event and will be organising a live newsroom and publishing a free daily digital edition especially for delegates.

Mentoring network set up to help more women break into headship

by TES, January 16, 2016

A new mentoring network to help female teachers become heads is being set up by the Leading Women’s Alliance. The initiative was one of the practical steps discussed at a conference in London today as a way of tackling the gender disparity at the top of education – 74 per cent of classroom teachers are women but only 65 per cent of heads are female, and a recent analysis found that when they do make the move into headship, women get smaller pay rises than men.

Wealthy children more than a year ahead when they start school

by TES, January 16, 2016

Children from the wealthiest parts of Scotland are already 14 months ahead of their peers from poorer neighbourhoods when they start school, according to research involving almost 20,000 children. The Performance Indicators in Primary Schools (Pips) figures on P1 children, who usually start aged 5, also shows that progress in school over that year varies widely depending on which school a child goes to, by as much as 12 months for reading and 14 months for maths.

Nick Clegg: 'Quality of teachers is important factor'

by BBC, January 15, 2016

A study suggests that where children grow up in England has an increasing impact on how well they do at school.
The Social Market Foundation examined test results and found that regional differences have become much greater.
Pupils' results are highest in London and lowest in Yorkshire and Humber.

New Oxford vice-chancellor urges 'open-minded' students

by BBC, January 15, 2016

The first female vice chancellor of Oxford University has called on students to be open minded and engage with "objectionable" ideas.
Louise Richardson was formally installed at a meeting of the university's ruling body at the Sheldonian Theatre.
"In an increasingly complex world the best may not be those who look and sound like ourselves," she said.

Nicola Roberts calls for better mental health education in schools

by BBC News, January 15, 2016

Singer and former Girls Aloud star Nicola Roberts joined the BBC's This Week to talk about mental health. In a discussion with Andrew Neil, Michael Portillo and Jess Phillips, she said the "huge" issue was not promoted enough in schools, saying better education would lead to less bullying of young people."We’re taught about how our bodies work, how our hearts work, but there’s nothing about the brain," she added.

Politicians, stop squabbling about education and agree a long-term plan

by Guardian, January 15, 2016

Tommy is shouting at Jonny that the mobile phone is his, and he wants it back. Jonny is insisting, just as loudly, that it is his and he won’t be giving it back. Both of them have their hands on the phone, attempting to prise it from the other. The outcome is inevitable: pieces of phone fly across the playground, while insults and accusations about whose fault the whole sorry affair is waft down the corridors.

Fragmented school places system 'harms children'

by BBC, January 15, 2016

The system for creating new school places in England is fragmented and confusing, risking harm to children's education, head teachers have warned.
Lack of cohesive local planning means new schools are not always opened where there is most need, says the National Association of Head Teachers (NAHT).
The warning comes on the final day for parents to submit this year's applications to primary schools.

More than half a million primary pupils taught in 'supersize' classes, Labour warns

by TES, January 15, 2016

More than half a million primary children in England are being taught in supersize classes, the Labour party has claimed. The analysis of official government figures, which shows that hundreds of thousands of pupils are being taught in one-teacher classes of more than 30 children, comes on the deadline day for parents to submit applications for children starting primary school.

Female headteachers get smaller pay rises than men

by TES, January 15, 2016

Female teachers still find it harder to make the final leap to headship, and at secondary level they face a smaller pay rise if they do, new analysis reveals today.
One leading unionist said that the study, based on teachers working full-time, provided evidence of the “pernicious glass ceiling” that women can encounter in their careers.