Latest Educational News

New initiative launched to help schools find fundraising opportunities

by Edexec, June 6, 2019

A new fundraising project has been launched to help schools raise money and improve the lives of pupils
FundStar, a not-for-personal-profit enterprise set up by David Evans MBE, has been formally launched after successful trials to offer schools a strategic and coordinated approach to their fundraising activity.

As schools experience a reduction in real-terms funding and increased costs, the pressure to raise money by alternative means is growing.

Whilst campaigns for more central government funding continue, schools must consider every route to pay for both the bare essentials and the added-value opportunities which will help children to thrive in their education. Many are even inviting parents to contribute to the cause.

Education website launched offering free revision courses in English and Maths

by Express.co.uk, June 5, 2019

It’s exam time again, and in households up and down the country, countless children and their parents will be filled with anxiety during the SATs and GCSE exams that will continue until the end of June. As a father of three school-aged children, my family and I have regularly experienced the stresses that accompany this time of year. Over the past few weeks, I have read countless articles discussing the primary school SATs exams, a debate that never fails to emerge at this time of year.

The 7 per cent problem: how to reform private schools

by NewStatesman, June 5, 2019

The “7 per cent problem” – that small proportion of Britain’s children attending private school but then going on to enjoy so much privilege and influence in adult life – remains an emotive issue. Just last month Stowe’s headmaster, Anthony Wallersteiner, was ridiculed for claiming that earmarking more Oxbridge places for state school pupils is a sign of “social engineering”, and for likening critics of private schools to anti-Semites.

Royal Grammar School in High Wycombe planning huge extension

by Bucks Free Press, June 5, 2019

Plans have been submitted by the Royal Grammar School to adjust the layout of the school, including extensions to the library and the creation of a new sixth form centre.

The Royal Grammar School hope the plans will respond to a recent audit of the site, which ‘highlighted a major deficiency in the spaces for Post 16 students’ and give the sixth form centre ‘prominence and pride of place within the school’.

Why the battle to save BTECs must be won

by TES, June 5, 2019

Next Monday was the deadline for responding to the first stage of the Department for Education’s consultation on “post-16 qualifications at level 3 and below in England” – better known to those outside Sanctuary Buildings as “the review of BTECs”.

Positive writing 'boosts poorer pupils' maths scores'

by TES, June 5, 2019

Giving pupils time out to write about the things that are important to them can improve the maths performance of disadvantaged pupils by giving them a psychological boost, new research suggests.

In the study, published in the British Journal of Educational Psychology, more than 500 pupils aged 11-14 were asked to carry out a 20-minute writing exercise three times during the school year.

University regulator unveils £14m mental health scheme to reduce student suicides

by Independent, June 5, 2019

A £14.5m programme to help reduce the number of student suicides at universities and colleges in England has been unveiled by the higher education regulator.

Nicola Dandridge, the head of the Office for Students (OfS), has said too many students are having their experience “blighted by mental ill-health” and more should be done to tackle the issue.

Cutting tuition fees could ‘prove to be a wolf in sheep’s clothing’

by Edexec, June 5, 2019

As reported by The Guardian, proposals to cut tuition fees and extend student loan repayments could ‘prove to be a wolf in sheep’s clothing’
A new report suggests that students from less advantaged backgrounds should be given £3,000 to remain in education.

Former prime minister, David Cameron, scrapped maintenance grants during his administration.

However, Theresa May stated that this was a ‘mistake’ and grants could be reinstated to ensure less well-off young people remain in education.

Perfect, We Can Abolish Private Schools – But, Then, Why Would We Bother?

by Continental Telegraph, June 4, 2019

There’s a vociferous section of British opinion that insists that we must abolish private schools. This is just the rich buying privilege for their offspring. The extra money available for teaching budgets means that these little fauntleroys can lord it over their poorer bretheren in later life just because they passed the exams and thus were able to take that elevator to the top.

The same people who scream this are those who also insist that genes don’t have much to do with success nor intelligence. That it’s difficult to conceive how intelligence first arose if it’s not genetic is not really explained. To think that genes don’t matter in a sexually reproductive species which selects mates by social standing is also a slight flaw. But, OK, the insistence is that we’re all a tablua rasa, written upon by society. It’s our environment, not genes, that make us what we become.

Teachers strike in key exam period in row over new curriculum changes

by Wales Online, June 4, 2019

Teachers are walking out of the classroom at a key exam period in a row over restructuring, potential job losses and management related to the new curriculum .

It is the first strike of its kind relating to the draft new curriculum, but the NASUWT teaching union predicts other schools across Wales will face similar issues with the possibility of further action.

Twenty six teachers at Ysgol Bryn Alyn in Wrexham will be on strike tomorrow and Thursday, June 6.

'No spare cash' for Edinburgh classroom support

by BBC, June 4, 2019

Head teachers have been told there is no spare funding to provide extra classroom support for a rising number of pupils with additional needs.

City of Edinburgh Council said it had recently received applications for an extra 250 pupils with support needs.

But a senior official has written to schools saying there is no money available for a significant increase in the number of support assistants.

The council said it had already increased additional support funding.

The EIS teaching union, however, said teachers were struggling to meet the increasingly complex needs of pupils in mainstream classes, and warned the council against trying for "inclusion on the cheap".

Accessibility - UK Education Institutes are burying their heads in the sand

by FE news, June 4, 2019

On 23 September 2018, The Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018 came into force for in the UK.

The aim of the regulations is to ensure public sector websites and mobile apps can be used by as many people as possible.

This includes those with:

impaired vision
motor difficulties
cognitive impairments or learning disabilities
deafness or impaired hearing

Barkingside schoolgirl scores highest possible mark in Mensa IQ test

by Ilford Recorder, June 4, 2019

Anushka Dixit, a Year 6 pupil at Avanti Court Primary School in Carlton Drive, scored 162 points, meaning she is well above the "genius benchmark" of 140.

Anushka, who memorised the periodic table in under 40 minutes, took the test on April 20 at the University of East London.

Einstein never took an IQ test but he was estimated to have an IQ of 160, the same score as Stephen Hawking.

New benefit launched in Scotland to help with school costs

by Edexec, June 4, 2019

As reported by The Scotsman, a new benefit payment scheme has been launched for low-income families to help cover the costs of school
Low-income families in Scotland can now apply for a new benefit which will help cover any costs incurred by sending their children to school.

Eligible families applying for the School Age Payment will be provided with £250 per child when that child begins school.

Families can apply now for pupils starting school in August. Applications are open until 29 February 2020.

It is part of the Best Start Grant, which is a package of payments for families who receive Universal Credit, income support, housing benefits and/or tax credits.

Dealing with subject access requests

by Edexec, June 4, 2019

A subject access request (SAR) is a request made by an individual, or another individual on their behalf, for details of the personal data held about them by an organisation, and the purposes for which it is being processed.

As data controllers, education providers are likely to process significant amounts of personal data in relation to students and staff – such as health records, payroll data and CCTV footage of the school grounds.

A-level English can lead to a variety of careers...

by TES, June 4, 2019

I’ve been watching with considerable dismay as the take-up of A level entries for English subjects declines.

Research by the influential English and Media Centre seems to lay the blame at the door of dissatisfaction with the over-mechanised GCSE specifications, putting many students off the much more exciting courses at the next level.

Teachers asked how to help poorer pupils achieve

by TES, June 4, 2019

Schools, teachers and councils across the North East are being asked to come up with ideas to close the performance gap between the region’s primary and secondary schools.

The government will provide funding of up to £1.8 million for plans to improve the transition between key stages 2 and 3 – particularly for the most deprived pupils.

11-Year-Old From Pinner Achieves Top Score on Mensa Test Beating Albert Einstein And Stephen Hawking

by Harrow Online, June 3, 2019

Jiya Vaducha, a Year 6 pupil at Pinner Wood School, has shocked her parents after scoring the highest possible marks 162 on British Mensa Cattell III B paper. This puts the 11-year-old in the top 1 % of the population, putting her well above the ‘High IQ benchmark’ of 140.

Jiya took her test at the Birkbeck College, London and recalls everyone staring at her when she entered the exam; everyone thought she was in the wrong room, as she was the youngest amongst them. Jiya said, “It was a two and a half hour test, comprising of non-verbal and verbal questions. I am very pleased with my results and look forward to joining the Mensa Society and meeting other members at the organisation’s gathering.”

Augar review: 'FE deserves to be treated with respect'

by TES, June 1, 2019

The Augar review was released earlier this week and with it, probably one of the most forthright calls for parity between FE and HE that I’ve ever known from the political sphere. The report and its recommendations (such as the lifelong learning fund, the £1 billion injection of cash and an appeal for the recognition that the sector has been sorely denied for a decade) kind of…well…threw me a tad.

Ofsted: Academisation made the curriculum 'suffer'

by TES, June 1, 2019

The curriculum in England's schools “started to suffer” because of academisation, a top Ofsted official has said.

Sean Harford, Ofsted’s national director of education, said today that the inspectorate “missed a trick” because it was slow to respond to schools having “the freedoms to do different stuff” after they became academies.