Latest Educational News

Grammar schools lose top spots after league table shakeup

by Guardian, January 20, 2017

DfE’s latest tables, ranked using new Progress 8 measure, show schools that made greatest advances in pupils’ grades
The government’s new performance measure has upended the traditional pecking order of England’s secondary schools, knocking grammar schools out of the top spots and boosting schools that dramatically improved results among their pupils.

The Department for Education’s latest performance tables, published on Thursday — including 2016’s GCSE exams and ranked by its new Progress 8 measure — reveals that the best schools in England are those which make the greatest advances in their pupils’ grades.

Grammars profit from sales of ‘mock’ 11-plus exams

by Schools Week, January 20, 2017

Classified as 11 Plus.

Grammar schools are pocketing tens of thousands of pounds from mock 11-plus tests, fuelling worries that reintroducing selective schools will “end up assessing wealth not ability”.
Sutton grammar school’s parent teacher association (PTA) openly advertises the sale of mock tests at £28 a pupil to help to prepare them for entrance exams.

A newsletter put out by the association towards the end of last year said the group had generated £70,000 from the scheme. This year it aims to raise nearly £80,000 by selling 2,800 tests. Profits are donated back to the south London school.

In Orpington, Kent, St Olave’s grammar school’s PTA charges £60 for its mock exam, earning nearly £35,000 last year. It aims to make £55,000 this year.

The discovery of pupils coached at a premium to gain a place at selective schools has increased fears that Theresa May’s promise to reintroduce grammars will disadvantage poorer pupils.

Thousands could miss out on free childcare, warns lobby group

by BBC, January 20, 2017

The government has underestimated the number of children in England eligible for 30 hours of free childcare promised from September, warns a lobby group.
The government says 390,000 three and four-year-olds will be eligible.
But research for the Pre-school Learning Alliance suggests the figure will be nearer 500,000, meaning tens of thousands could miss out.
The government says it is spending more on childcare than any previous administration.

British universities have not appointed a single black academic in senior management roles in the past three years, study finds

by Daily Mail, January 20, 2017

.A study by the Higher Education Statistics Agency have published new figures
.Their research shows how not a single black person was in a senior role last year
.Out of 565 people in these roles - 510 were white (90 per cent) and 15 were Asian

British universities have not hired a single black academic in senior management roles in the last three years, according to a new study.
The Higher Education Statistics Agency published figures which highlight how no black academics were appointed in the 'managers, directors and senior officials' category throughout the year 2015-16.
Of the 565 people listed, 510 were 'white' - 90 per cent - while 15 people said they were 'Asian'.

More than 1,500 schools score negatively as new government league tables revealed

by Independent, January 20, 2017

The Government claims new progress and attainment measures used to compare schools present a clearer picture of how well they are performing

More than a third of schools are failing to meet new government targets at A-level, official league tables have revealed.

And of 6,235 schools measured under the Government’s new GCSE ranking system, 1,910 were given a negative rating, meaning they were performing below average.

This year is the first time schools have not been judged solely on how many pupils score at least 5 GCSE grades A*- C, but by the two new measures Progress 8 and Attainment 8.

Shortage of places warning over 30-hour free childcare scheme

by BT , January 20, 2017

The 30-hour free childcare scheme could face a shortage of tens of thousands of spaces, new figures suggest.

Early years organisation Pre-school Learning Alliance has warned that findings from an independent report indicate the Government has underestimated the number of families likely to be eligible for the scheme.

Britain World Editorial Features Sport Arts One In 10 Schools Failing Under New Tory Assessment

by Morning Star Online, January 20, 2017

NEARLY one in 10 secondary schools are underperforming, with those in north-west England doing worst, Department for Education data revealed yesterday. But teachers warned that the government stats were not to be trusted.
A total of nearly 300 secondaries failed to meet new government targets, one in six of them in the north-west. Knowsley North West had a 100 per cent rate of underperformance.
Darlington North East was named the second worst, with 42.9 per cent of its schools underperforming, and Oldham North West followed with 38.5 per cent.

Playing the odds to tackle pupils’ online gambling

by TES, January 20, 2017

With websites and apps making it easier than ever for young people to place bets, it’s time for teachers to tackle the subject in online safety lessons
When it comes to online safety, there are many considerations as we prepare pupils to navigate their way sensibly and safely: connecting with strangers, the risks of sexual exploitation and protecting their own online identity. One that has never really crossed my mind is online gambling. But looking at recent headlines, perhaps we’re missing a significant problem facing young people today.

It turns out that almost half a million children between 11 and 15 are gambling online each week in the UK, according to a recent study by the Gambling Commission. This astonishing figure is much higher than the equivalent for problems that usually get the limelight, such as smoking, drug and alcohol misuse.

Exclusive: Schools may try to 'lose' vulnerable pupils because of Progress 8

by TES, January 20, 2017

Heads' warning comes as study reveals a single pupil’s poor results can cancel out the achievements of many more classmates under new GCSE accountability measure
Schools could try to “lose” their most vulnerable pupils because their GCSE results could be particularly damaging to league table positions under Progress 8, heads have warned.

School leaders spoke out in the week that the Department for Education published the first official Progress 8 (P8) scores for England’s secondaries.

The system is designed to be fairer by taking into account the achievements of pupils of all abilities, not just those who achieve at least five A*-C grades under the previous performance measure.

However, the new measure means that lower-ability pupils can do far more damage to a school’s overall league table position, increasing the risk of them falling below floor standards.

Exclusive: New boss at England's biggest academy chain to consider converting schools to grammars

by TES, January 20, 2017

Classified as 11 Plus.

Julian Drinkall, Academies Enterprise Trust chief executive, says selection decision will depend on his academies' 'markets'
The new head of the country’s largest multi-academy trust has told TES that he will consider introducing academic selection to his schools.

Julian Drinkall, chief executive of the Academies Enterprise Trust, said: “I think that as we look at each of those schools in the particular markets and catchment areas in which they exist, there might be arguments for selection in certain places."

Exclusive: At least 1,100 small rural schools facing cuts despite minsters' funding protection pledge

by TES, January 20, 2017

Warnings that funding changes could threaten viability of many of the schools
More than a thousand small rural schools face the prospect of cuts under the government’s proposals for a national funding formula, despite ministerial assurances that they would be protected, TES can reveal.

Critics are warning that the changes could threaten the viability of many of the schools.

A TES analysis of government figures illustrating the impact of the plans shows that at least 1,101 rural schools that meet the Department for Education’s official definition of “small” would have their budgets cut.

'The transformation into an academy isn't burdensome for colleges'

by TES, January 20, 2017

Hereford Sixth-Form College is set to become the first college academy converter within weeks. Here principal Jonathan Godfrey reflects on academisation
The announcement made by George Osborne in 2015, allowing sixth-form colleges to become academies and thus eligible to reclaim VAT, was the culmination of a long "Drop the Learning Tax" campaign by the Sixth-Form Colleges' Association. It is no surprise that a significant number of sixth-form colleges are considering this, given the significant financial benefit. This is not to say that the issue of the wholly unjustifiable 20 per cent funding gap between the post-16 sector and other phases of education has been resolved.

Parents shell out thousands on private tutors

by ITV News, January 20, 2017

Business is booming for private tutors in Essex and Hertfordshire as parents try to get their kids into grammar schools.

According to one tutor, parents are shelling out thousands of pounds a year to help their youngsters pass the 11 plus.

Critics claim the system only benefits children from more privileged backgrounds.

Secondary school league tables 2016: Grammar school children excel while comprehensives fall behind, figures show

by Telegraph, January 19, 2017

Classified as 11 Plus.

Grammar schools allow children to achieve their potential, new Government figures reveal, while the brightest 150,000 state school children do not excel at comprehensives.

Official data released by the Department for Education (DfE) shows that 94 per cent of children at grammar schools have made good progress by the time they are 16, compared to less than half (49 per cent) of students at non-selective schools.

The figures will come as a boost for Prime Minister Theresa May’s plans to overturn the ban on grammar schools imposed by Labour some 20 years ago.

Every single Kent secondary school ranked by GCSE results in 2016

by Kent Llive, January 19, 2017

Classified as 11 Plus.

Tonbridge Grammar School was the best performing school in Kent in 2016 - and one of the best performers in England - according to analysis of its GCSE results.

Trinity Mirror's data unit has crunched the numbers and found the grammar school came out on top in the county - and also 7th in the country - based on its Attainment 8 performance, with an average score per pupil of 76.7. This is roughly equivalent to an A* grade for each of the eight subjects included.

Pupils at the school are making good progress, with a positive Progress 8 measure of 0.75. Overall, 95% of pupils passed the English Baccalaureate, with 100% gaining an A* to C grade in both English and Maths.

Grammar schools: a toxic policy or will they benefit pupils?

by ITV, January 19, 2017

Classified as 11 Plus.

A toxic policy or one that will benefit pupils?

A headteacher from Cambridgeshire has described the government's plan to open more grammar schools as a toxic policy that won't help pupils from poorer backgrounds. Robert Campbell the Executive Principal of Impington Village College says instead, there needs to be more investment to provide greater schools for all.

The Education Secretary has indicated she will press ahead with the controversial plans in the face of stiff opposition.

GCSE and A Level tables: Results for every London state and independent school

by Evening Standard, January 19, 2017

These league tables show the results of GCSEs and A-levels taken by pupils in 2016.

For GCSEs and A Levels the boroughs of London are listed alphabetically. You may find it easier to use the Find function to locate the school or borough you are interested in.

Schools in each area, including both state and most independents, are ranked according to the percentage of pupils achieving at least five A* to C grades including English and maths in their GCSEs. This measure is historically seen as the standard way of ranking schools and the benchmark expected by employers. These scores are shown in the second column. Ties are broken by the number of pupils who took the exams, shown in the first column.

GCSE results league table - how did your local school do? Type in the name to find out

by Mirror, January 19, 2017

In a victory for the state school system, all of the top ten are Academy status apart from one independent school which came in at second place

MirrorOnline can today reveal the best performing schools in England based on GCSE results - and gives you the chance to check how your local schools did.

The Henrietta Barnett School in Barnet has come out on top as the best performing school in England last year - with an average Attainment 8 score per pupil of 78.5.

This means that pupils at the school were averaging 7.8 points per subject - almost an A .

The high-flying school also achieved a positive Progress 8 measure of 0.55 - meaning pupils did even better than expected in the subjects that were counted towards their Attainment 8 scores.

League tables: New targets see 282 secondaries underperforming

by BBC, January 19, 2017

A total of 282 secondary schools in England are deemed to be failing by the government, as they have not met a new set of national standards.
From this year, schools are being judged by new measures, which take greater account of pupil progress and their basic ability than raw results.
The Department for Education says the measures present a clearer picture of how well schools are performing.
Head teachers say the results come amid a funding and recruitment crisis.

Bomb teams sent to schools 600 times in chemical alert

by BBC, January 19, 2017

Bomb disposal teams were called out to almost 600 schools in the wake of government advice about a potentially hazardous chemical.
The warning about stocks of 2,4 dinitrophenylhydrazine (DNPH) sparked a flurry of calls to the Army, which carried out hundreds of explosions.
The Department for Education (DfE) said it worked with the Army to support schools with "necessary disposals".
Some schools were criticised for not warning the public about the blasts.
The controlled explosions were carried out between 21 October and 21 December 2016 after schools were advised to check the chemical by the government advisory science service CLEAPSS (Consortium of Local Education Authorities for the Provision of Science Services).

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