Latest Educational News

A bonus for all teachers at Christmas? Why we should expect a big cheque from the government

by TES, December 23, 2015

Nicky Morgan seems a sensible woman, writes one teacher. Surely she can see that now is the time to give school staff a pay rise?
As the bells ring out on Christmas Day, the education secretary, Ms Morgan, will broadcast a surprise goodwill package for teachers – a Christmas bonus of £2,000 and the promise of a bumper pay-rise matching the one received by her fellow MPs at Westminster. The traditional toast to “Good old Saint Nick” will forever have a new meaning before the week is out.

Malala and Muzoon reunite to proclaim benefits of education

by BBC, December 23, 2015

"Are two Malalas better than one?" I ask, only partly in jest, of two smiling teenagers sitting on a purple sofa in a gleaming public library in northern England.
It elicits some quiet giggles. "Or two Muzoons," 18-year-old Malala Yousafzai immediately chimes in. Muzoon Almellehan, 17, hands clasped demurely in her lap, smiles shyly at the world's most famous campaigner for girls' education who is fast becoming the best of friends.

Be bold, Mr Osborne, and embrace international students

by The Guardian, December 22, 2015

The state of the UK as a provider of international education has received much attention over the past year. On the plus side, George Osborne announced plans to recruit an additional 55,000 international students by 2020 in the autumn spending review. This is simultaneously a welcome yet unambitious move – and one that will, in any case, require cabinet support if it’s to overcome the Home Office’s migration regime.

Dear Santa, here's our Christmas wishlist for education – love, teachers

by The Guardian, December 22, 2015

Dear Santa, As you know, teachers are a dedicated bunch, working tirelessly to help the nation’s sprogs, sorry, next generation.
Anyway, we think they deserve some extra special festive gifts this year, and to make it easier for you to know exactly what to give them, our community has put together a Christmas wishlist.

Nicky Morgan: schools must monitor pupils' internet use to prevent radicalisation Kaye Wiggins

by TES, December 22, 2015

All schools will have to monitor pupils’ internet use to protect them from cyberbullying, pornography and radicalisation, under government proposals announced today.
A new set of measures, set out by education secretary Nicky Morgan, means schools will have to introduce filtering systems on their computers, and monitor internet use.

'How many Oxbridge academics does it take to decide if a student should get a place?'

by TES, December 22, 2015

The answer is 'a lot', writes on experienced admissions expert – and that's exactly as it should be The end of last week marked not just the beginning of the final countdown to Christmas, but also the end of an intense two weeks for more than 7,000 students who have been interviewed for admission to Oxford this year and the academics who make selection decisions. As a lecturer in Italian with nearly a decade of admissions interviews under my belt, I’ve seen how much preparation and energy on the part of students and their teachers goes into each application. And there’s no doubt we ask a lot from students, parents and ourselves in putting aside so much time and energy for these two weeks at the end of a long autumn term.

Charity project needs urgent help to spread word on global benefits of education

by TES, December 22, 2015

An international storytelling project highlighting how education can change lives needs financial support to get off the ground. The Steve Sinnott Foundation educational charity, hopes to make three short animated films to promote the United Nations’ goal to secure primary education for all children around the world.

Government criticised for 'cutting feminism' from A-level politics

by TES, December 22, 2015

Labour has jokingly questioned whether the female reproductive system would ever be dropped from biology lessons, after the government moved to "cut feminism" from the politics A-level. Government whip Baroness Evans of Bowes Park said politics A-level would have a "new focus" because universities had indicated that the three core theories of conservatism, socialism and liberalism would "best prepare" students for their undergraduate studies.

‘Why social media should be banned for under-16s’

by TES, December 21, 2015

Usually, I am a vocal critic of telling young people what their problems are. It happens more than you’d imagine. A steering group somewhere sits and imagines what it might be like to be a young person today and makes proposals based on how difficult they’d find it, rather than doing something truly innovative and pioneering like, erm, actually asking an actual young person.

Apple turns stores into classrooms By Sean Coughlan

by BBC, December 21, 2015

Apple is using all of its worldwide network of stores as temporary classrooms this week to teach coding. The technology firm is using its 468 stores as bases for tutorials in the annual "Hour of Code" project.

UK among world's worst for 'teaching to the test', research finds

by TES, December 21, 2015

UK schools are among the worst in the developed world for “teaching to the test”, a new analysis of the effect of income inequality on education suggests.
According to the study by researchers at the University of Oxford, Britain and the US are the worst culprits for educating students just to pass an exam. The statistics were taken from the Programme for International Student Assessment (Pisa) rankings and the Survey of Adult Skills (PIAAC), both of which are administered by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development.

I'm no Grinch, says headteacher who 'rationalised' Christmas

by TES, December 21, 2015

A headteacher accused of being a "Grinch" for cancelling Christmas plays has defended his decision, saying it was necessary to “rationalise” celebrations in a climate of tough Ofsted scrutiny. Andrew Gould, acting headteacher at Barming Primary School in Maidstone, Kent, told TES that he chose to end school plays for all but Reception pupils because he “could not justify” taking children out of lessons to rehearse.

‘Join the resistance! How school staff can subversively wrestle back influence over exams and put teaching above testing’

by TES, December 19, 2015

Out of sight, below the surface of school life, there are signs of a fight back against the all-powerful exams system, writes a director of innovation
Teachers don’t expect the curriculum content we learned and teach now to be of much use in later life. After all, that’s not the point of liberal, general education. The things that stay with us should be the skills, attitudes and dispositions imbibed and honed in the classroom. There’s lots of discussion around these "transferable" qualities, and their importance over "mere" subject knowledge.

How to interpret your pupils’ Christmas presents

by TES, December 19, 2015

What do gifts of deodorant and Homer Simpson socks really say about a teacher?
“Grumpy Git!” says Marcus, bouncing up and down in the face of my incomprehension. “Do you get it, Mr Eddison?”

I shake my head in confusion.

“Grumpy Git!” he persists, desperate for me to understand. “It’s called Grumpy Git!”

Slower than a snail sliding home from the Allotment Society Christmas Social, the glow of enlightenment shows across my face.

‘We work as hard as (or harder than) lawyers. We should be paid like them – or even more’

by TES, December 19, 2015

The ever-increasing work and responsibilities associated with teaching are never going to go away, writes one successful economics teacher. What we need is a pay packet that reflects it.

10 ways to boost the number of maths and physics teachers

by TES, December 19, 2015

Paying off student loans and higher pay are two of the ideas to boost the numbers of maths and physics teachers suggested by headteachers today.

Ofqual considers GCSE and A-level overhaul that could ration top grades for bright pupils

by TES, December 19, 2015

England’s exams regulator is considering rationing A and A* grades in the GCSE and A-level subjects that attract the brightest pupils, it has been announced today.

The proposal from Ofqual is one of three potential changes that the watchdog is considering in a major overhaul of grading, designed to make exam results in different subjects more easily comparable.

We need fewer exams and more wilderness in education

by The Guardian, December 18, 2015

Government plans to introduce national tests for seven-year-olds shows just how far our exam obsession has come. Our kids now face constant assessment as politicians attempt to measure the success of schools. Children have become tiny cogs in a box-ticking government machine. Education has lost its way.

How To Make Pupil Tracking Fast, Simple And Effective

by Teaching Times, December 17, 2015

On 1st December, Sue Hackman popped in to the office to discuss her Climbing Frames pupil progress tracking app. The assessment tool gives schools fast and effective assessment and far-reaching data. We couldn’t miss the opportunity to film the conversation!

Schools Feel Pressurised To Convert To Academy Status

by Teaching Times, December 17, 2015

New research has found that over 80 per cent of schools in England feel pressurised to convert to academy status. The study of over 100 schools in England by HCSS Education found however, when teachers and school leaders were asked whether they would actually want their school to convert to an academy, over half of schools (59%) said no.