Latest Educational News

Keeping schools mentally healthy: sometimes young people just need to talk

by Schools Week, April 16, 2019

Sometimes young people just want to talk, says Lisa Fathers, who explains how the devolved administration in Greater Manchester has trained up teachers and peer mentors to provide mental health support in schools

The recent figures from the Children’s Commissioner highlighting that a third of areas in England are reducing real-terms spending on vital mental health services such as counsellors is worrying. The numbers underline why all individuals working in a school environment need skills to be able to recognise and help children requiring mental health support, but who may not qualify for specialist treatment.

Number of children taught in 'super-size' primary school classes is highest in a decade, data shows

by Telegraph, April 16, 2019

The number of children being taught in “super-size” primary school classes is at its highest in a decade, official data shows.

More than one in ten pupils (10.8 per cent) aged between four and 11 are now taught in classes of 31 or more - the largest proportion since 2007 - according to figures published by the Department for Education (DfE).

Four out of 10 teachers plan to quit, survey suggests

by BBC, April 16, 2019

Where do you see yourself in five years' time? No longer working in education, 40% of UK teachers surveyed by a teachers' union replied.

It may sound like a cliched interview question, but the National Education Union says that the answer is evidence of a "culture of fear" in schools.

Its survey of 8,600 members found most of those leaving blamed "huge workloads and excessive accountability".

Education Secretary Damian Hinds has promised to tackle the workload issue.

Do A-level results matter or not? A question for our unscrupulous universities

by Guardian, April 16, 2019

If you’re the parent of an 18-year-old , it is time to pat yourself on the back. The country has a shortage of this age group, due to a birth dip at the time of the millennium. Not only does this mean the group will have an incredible market value in a few years’ time when graduate recruiters struggle to fill their vacancies; this little cohort has also done us a massive favour and shown just how unscrupulous our university sector can be.

Teacher gender split in top UK universities confirms that it is harder for women to climb the career ‘ladder’

by FE news, April 13, 2019

There is an ongoing debate on the gender pay gap and women’s access to senior roles - but how well are female professors represented in the teaching profession in higher education?

RS Components have analysed the teaching staff at the UK’s top universities for a number of core subjects to discover the female-to-male breakdown - and in what may come as no surprise to some, females are largely outnumbered by males.

Why one Birmingham school believes health and wellbeing should be a family affair

by TES, April 13, 2019

Over a third of children in England are leaving primary school overweight or obese, and when I discovered that Birmingham pupils are struggling more than most – more than a quarter of 10- and 11-year-olds in the area were classified as obese or severely obese – my colleagues and I wanted to do something about it.

We decided to review the day-to-day running of the school – Dorrington Academy in Perry Barr, Birmingham – and the entire curriculum in order to maximise the health of our 693 children. We were determined to help them to avoid the health risks associated with being very overweight, which include diabetes, heart disease and certain cancers.

Teaching no longer allows us the time to get to know our pupils

by TES, April 13, 2019

It was Friday afternoon. After an intense week of fractions and persuasive writing, I decided it was time to down pens and do some PSHE.

The children eagerly rearranged furniture and we were soon sat in a circle. A few minutes in, they reminded me that our worry monsters needed checking so I dutifully unzipped their mouths to see what lurked inside and found – nothing.

Spalding Grammar team takes on the world in Jaguar Land Rover challenge

by Spalding Today, April 13, 2019

A team of 18-year-olds from Spalding Grammar School will be hoping to claim a world title at one of the world’s top education challenge world finals this weekend.

The Land Rover 4x4 in Schools World Finals will bring together national champions from around the globe to compete for the world title.

Team Trigonometric - Megan Kendall, Tristan McNeill and Samuel Eady - will be competing over two days at the University of Warwick, close to Jaguar Land Rover’s headquarters. Students will also participate in a visit to the company’s Gaydon Design and Engineering Centre to learn about its automated, connected and electric innovations and career opportunities.

Conal Gregory: How to cope with the soaring costs of a private education

by Yorkshire Post, April 13, 2019

A private education is an aspiration that many parents have for their children as they weigh up the advantages of small class sizes, often excellent sports facilities and the breadth of extra-curricular activities offered by many independent schools.

Private schooling is a major financial commitment and needs good planning. With the cost of fees continuing to rise above inflation, the earlier your money can be invested, the better chance it has to pay all or a major part of the expense.

Improving access is not enough

by Cherwell.org, April 13, 2019

Oxford and Cambridge have an access problem; this is news to nobody. In September, we found out that Oxford spends £108,000 to recruit each extra low-income student. In October, a Fellow of Jesus College, Oxford, said that Welsh students lack the confidence to apply to Oxbridge. In December, thanks to new research, we discovered that eight schools send as many pupils to Oxbridge as three-quarters of schools altogether.

Grammar school students do not lead healthier or wealthier lives, finds study into pupils who passed 11-plus in 1970s

by Daily Mail, April 13, 2019

Children who attend grammar school do not go on to lead healthier or wealthier lives finds study.

An in depth study found that those who attended the schools were more likely to get better A-levels and a degree but that the advantages stopped there.

The analysis of the grammar school goers who took the 11 plus exam in 1969 found that they are no more physically or mentally healthy, wealthier or likely to be employed than their comprehensive school counterparts.

With teenagers from all backgrounds now taking A-levels and many going on to do a degree the study concluded that any benefit of attending a grammar school over a comprehensive may be wiped out all together.

Letter: Guidelines exist for private schools

by Times Union, April 12, 2019

The article "Private schools sue over audit plans," March 7, did a fine job outlining many of the concerns that independent schools have with proposed state Department of Education "substantial equivalency" guidelines. However, we believe it missed the fact that a perfectly good remedy already exists for the state Education Department's concerns.

Brexit stress? Try GCSEs

by Financial Times, April 12, 2019

Brexit has been mercifully overshadowed in our household by the significantly more terrifying run-up to GCSEs. The family has moved seamlessly from stockpiling toilet paper and long-life milk for a no-deal crash-out into caching comfort food for the cliff-edge exam scenario. While other families fret about the availability of fresh lettuce or European blueberries, we are endeavouring to ensure uninterrupted supplies of pickled cucumbers and fig rolls.

Why the UK apprenticeship levy is struggling to boost social mobility

by Financial Times, April 12, 2019

Kavindi Wickramaarachchi was only a month into studying for her A levels when she realised she could no longer cope with school.

She had arrived in the UK as an outsider — her parents had emigrated from Sri Lanka when she was just six-months-old, seeking a better life for the family — but this was nothing compared with the alienation she felt at school, where exam pressure was giving her anxiety attacks.

Apprenticeships were her saving grace. Searching for jobs she chanced upon WhiteHat, a London start-up that connects young people with employers looking to make use of money from the apprenticeship levy, especially those from disadvantaged and ethnic minority families.

A guide to public school rivalries

by Life Spectator, April 12, 2019

Every time a public schoolboy reveals where he went to school, another similarly well educated chap looks down on him.

Jacob Rees-Mogg (Eton) was at it just the other week in the Commons, when he disagreed with Nick Boles (Winchester) over Brexit.

Boles had just said he voted to leave the EU by backing Theresa May’s deal, while Rees-Mogg voted against it.

London is named ‘Educational Capital of the World’ for 2019

by London Post, April 12, 2019

Over 40% of postgraduates in the UK come from overseas and are studying at some of the top universities in the world. Although Brexit uncertainty continues, recent research shows record numbers of international students continue to apply to study at university within the UK.

Fresh Student Living has looked at what makes London and the UK one of the most desirable education destinations for international students, particularly in times of uncertainty.

University of Essex plans largest ever expansion of staff and students

by Guardian, April 12, 2019

The University of Essex will recruit 150 new members of staff, amid a spate of planned redundancies and cutbacks at other universities as a result of a shrinking pool of students and political uncertainty.

Essex is to create 100 new academic and 50 new professional posts as part of the largest expansion of staff in its 55-year history. The university aims to grow student numbers by 5,000 to reach 20,000 by 2025.

Wealthier families twice as likely to secure a school place on appeal, EPI report shows

by Edexec, April 12, 2019

A new EPI report shows that families living in wealthier areas are twice as likely to secure a school place on appeal
According to a new Education Policy Institute (EPI) report, financially well-off families are more likely to succeed in securing a school place on appeal.

The report draws on the stories of 86,000 families who didn’t get their first choice of secondary schools.

The study found that families from wealthier areas of England were twice as likely to get a place through either waiting lists or appeals.

Stem: Inquiry explores impact of science teaching on nursery children

by TES, April 12, 2019

The importance of teaching science, technology, engineering and maths (Stem) to young children will be explored by MSPs.

The Scottish Parliament’s Education and Skills Committee has today launched an inquiry to examine the impact of Stem subjects on children aged three to seven, and how successfully they are being delivered. It will also consider the impact Stem teaching at this stage has on broadening children's horizons about possible careers.

Imaginative play: what teachers need to know

by TES, April 12, 2019

Work and play are complete opposites. One requires concentration, focus and productivity; the other relaxation, fun and silliness.

A child playing pretend – acting like a dragon, or a tree, or Elsa from Frozen – surely falls into the second category; they may be enjoying themselves, but they’re not likely to be making progress. Right?

Wrong, according to cognitive psychologist David Whitebread, a former acting director of the Centre for Research on Play in Education, Development and Learning at the University of Cambridge.