Latest Educational News

Primary school Sats: Pupils and parents protest

by BBC, April 25, 2019

Parents, pupils and teachers made their opposition clear to testing four-year-olds in English schools.

For Politics Live, reporter John Owen spoke to some campaigners in Parliament Square before they delivered a 65,000 name petition to Downing Street against the plans to test youngsters, weeks after they start primary school.

Exclusive: Third of teachers lost a week of Easter break to the job

by TES, April 25, 2019

Almost a third of teachers spent at least a working week of their Easter "break" on their jobs, a snap poll has suggested.

The survey by Tes shows that 30 per cent of those polled spent between five and nine days doing their job over the holidays. And another 2 per cent worked at least 10 days of the holiday.

The #FutureofEducation is to power up teachers, not just #EdTech

by FE news, April 25, 2019

Put teaching before technology. That’s the message from Mike Sharples, Emeritus Professor of Educational Technology at The Open University.

Computer companies including Google, Apple, Amazon and Microsoft are funding personalised learning systems, virtual reality history classes, even drones for teaching geography. But technology alone won’t solve the deep problems of education.

Sharples says, “We need to focus on how teachers make good use of technology to enhance learning, not just the technology itself. The key to this is pedagogy.”

School named 'best in England' by The Sunday Times told it needs to improve by Ofsted

by Gazette Live, April 25, 2019

A Teesside primary named 'the best state school in England' last year has been told it requires improvement by Ofsted.

According to the Sunday Times, St Bede's in Marske was the top performer in the state school category in its Parent Power survey in November.

It highlighted its excellent Sats results and the close bond the school has with its parents and the local community.

'We want to do the same things as boys', girls say

by TES, April 25, 2019

Almost 16,000 schoolgirls say not being able to do the same things as boys is the most unfair thing about being a girl.

When asked what was unfair about being a girl today, 83 per cent of Guides named being treated differently to boys, and 65 per cent cited prejudice against women in jobs or careers.

Incontinence: 'Lack of support' for older children

by BBC, April 25, 2019

"One boy told the whole class I wear nappies. Everyone looked at me and I could feel my cheeks go red."

For Gruff, double incontinence has made some days at secondary school an anxious and humiliating experience.

Campaigners claim there is a lack of support in Wales, estimating that 1 in 10 UK children suffer bedwetting, daytime accidents and constipation.

The Welsh Government said it expected health boards to provide specialist-led continence services for under-19s.

As a teacher, I know parents are right to march against unfair tests for under-fives

by Guardian, April 25, 2019

When I imagine the perfect way for a four-year-old to spend an afternoon, it chiefly involves making mud pies, eating raisins, finger painting with friends, all topped off by a much-needed afternoon nap. What it does not include is marching to Downing Street to protest against government education policy. Nor does it involve being subjected to a high-stakes assessment in the first six weeks of beginning school.

Yet the government’s plans to reintroduce compulsory baseline assessments for four-year-olds next year means that parents and their young children have been left with little choice but to protest. The baseline tests will supposedly assess the maths and literacy ability of children when they start school. Schools can then be held accountable for the “progress” students make from reception to year six. But the March of the Four-Year-Olds will descend on Downing Street on Thursday to deliver a petition, signed by 64,000 people, demanding that the government listens to the growing evidence that these tests are both damaging and unnecessary.

Literacy: 5 ways to boost reading with parents

by TES, April 24, 2019

Along with more than 3,000 others across the country, I am a reading volunteer in a primary school, where I work one-to-one with three Year 4 children every week.

I am also managing director of the national reading charity Coram Beanstalk, where I have seen growing demand from schools looking to help parents develop their skills around reading with children.

Fewer than half of UK schools and colleges believe they are GDPR compliant

by FE news, April 24, 2019

New research findings released today by RM Education and Trend Micro shows fewer than half of UK schools and colleges (48%) believe that they are fully GDPR compliant. Plus, there remains confusion over staff responsibility in terms of GDPR compliance.

Last year 156 education professionals were surveyed about how practices and systems have changed since the arrival of GDPR in May 2018 and their ongoing concerns about the legislation.

Key findings from the research include:

Half of schools believe that they are in breach of the regulations - 52% of schools surveyed did not think they are GDPR compliant. In addition, 14% of schools still do not have a strategy in place to become GDPR compliant.

Scottish exams: How can you cope with stress?

by BBC, April 24, 2019

As Scottish school pupils get set to start their exams on Thursday, BBC Scotland's education correspondent Jamie McIvor looks at some of the ways students can avoid harmful stress and look after their mental health.

Exams are always stressful.

It's only natural that candidates will worry about whether they have done enough work, or about which questions and topics will come up.

For those whose place on a college or university course depends on their exam results, or who are worried about the class of degree they will be awarded, the stakes are even higher.

Calls for more men to work in the early years

by UK GOV, April 24, 2019

More men are to be encouraged in to a careers in nurseries and early years settings, in a new project to provide more diverse role models for children before they start school.

With men making up just 3% of early years staff in England, the project aims to break down the barriers that prevent men entering careers in children’s early education, including the myth that men are less suited to caring roles.

Special needs education in Suffolk to get £45m boost

by BBC, April 24, 2019

A local authority is to borrow up to £30m to fund hundreds of new special educational needs (SEND) school places.

Suffolk County Council wants to create more than 800 new places. This will take five years and cost about £45m.

The Conservative council's cabinet has approved the first phase of the programme to create places ready for September 2020.

It will borrow a maximum of £30m with a further £15m expected to come from government (DfE) funding pots.

The Lego bricks designed for children with sight loss

by BBC, April 24, 2019

Lego have designed "Braille bricks" to help pupils with sight loss.

The BBC's Victoria Derbyshire programme has been to meet pupils at one specialist school testing them out.

Some say other communication tools should also be taught.

Poorer children 'twice as likely to be out of work in later life'

by Guardian, April 24, 2019

Disadvantaged children who qualify for free school meals are twice as likely to be out of work in later life than their better-off peers, and even when they get good qualifications at school the employment gap remains, according to research.

A report by Impetus, a venture philanthropy charity that aims to support young people from disadvantaged backgrounds, found that 26% of those on FSM were not in education, employment, or training (Neet) after leaving school, compared with only 13% of non-FSM youngsters.


by The Schools News Service, April 24, 2019

Imagine a child who has a total grasp of a subject – perhaps history, or geography, or French, or maths.

But now imagine that same child without the ability effectively to communicate her or his knowledge. As far as the rest of the world is concerned that young person simply hasn’t learned.

Of course this is an extreme case, but in essence every child with poor communication skills has difficulties – not just in self-expression but also in listening and understanding.

A-level and GCSE exam papers are to be micro-chipped for first time in bid to combat online leaks

by Telegraph, April 23, 2019

Exam papers are to be micro-chipped for the first time this summer in an attempt to combat online leaks, one of the country's biggest exam boards has announced.

Pearson, which owns the exam board Edexcel, is piloting a new security initiative which will see micro-chips inserted into packs of A-level and GCSE questions.

The valuable link between technology and education

by The Irish News , April 23, 2019

EDUCATION and technology are ever more closely linked.

On the one hand, there is something of a revolution happening in education as technology changes how universities operate, students are taught, and teachers teach.

Recently, the media covered the story of Beacon, an artificial intelligence (AI) education tool, and the first digital assistant of its kind to be operating at a UK university.

Staffordshire University developed Beacon with cloud service provider ANS and launched it in January this year. The chatbot, which can be downloaded in a mobile app, enhances the student experience by answering timetable questions and suggesting societies to join. Beacon can also apply for an exemption from council tax, order new student cards and connect users with lecturers.

Damian Hinds stresses importance of testing in primary school

by Edexec, April 23, 2019

The education secretary, Damian Hinds, wrote in the Sunday Telegraph on 21 April about the importance of SATs, weighing in on a national debate regarding pupil stress levels and whether these exams are necessary
Damian Hinds has weighed in on the ongoing debate surrounding SATs currently, in a Sunday Telegraph piece. His article is as follows:

“Most of us go to the dentist and the optician to have our teeth and eyes checked on a regular basis. When we turn 40 we can have our health checked by the GP. If something matters, you check that it’s all ok.

Cressida Cowell: 9 books to inspire young readers

by TES, April 23, 2019

I have been a children’s author for 20 years and am constantly reminded of the importance of reading for pleasure at school visits, festival events and through my work as an ambassador for the National Literacy Trust.

Study after study has demonstrated how crucial reading for pleasure is for academic success, mental health and even later economic success: being able to read does not give the same benefits as enjoying it. Getting the right book into the right child’s hands is crucial for helping children to discover a love of reading.

The best tech in the classroom? An old-school whiteboard

by TES, April 23, 2019

Once upon a time there was a “techvangalical” teacher.

Every lesson she taught involved a dizzying array of technology; flipchart voting, notebook computers, moving text boxes and images which danced before students’ eyes.