Latest Educational News

Let school leaders decide mobile phone policy

by Edexec, March 7, 2019

Call me politically naïve, but I’m guessing that the health secretary doesn’t routinely dish out advice to doctors on the best techniques for haemorrhoid reduction. And yet when schools minister Nick Gibb ‘calls on schools to ban mobile phones’, we somehow accept this as the political norm. When did that happen, exactly?

After all, the great mantra behind England’s convulsive educational reforms was that no-one knows better than leaders how to run great schools.

In his 2011 speech to the, once-proud, National College for School Leadership, education secretary Michael Gove looked his audience of headteachers in the eye and said, “You are 120 of the best school leaders in England – which means 120 of the best school leaders in the world. And 120 of the most important people in this country. Educational progress in this country has not been driven primarily by politicians; it’s been driven, generation after generation, by teachers. And especially headteachers. People like you.”

Universities Minister visits Leeds on University Mental Health Day

by Leeds University , March 7, 2019

Chris Skidmore, Minister of State for Universities, Science, Research and Innovation, is at the University of Leeds today to learn more about mental health support for students.

The visit coincides with a Government announcement to create a student mental health taskforce to help people successfully manage the new challenges that going to university presents.

Freshers to be offered training to overcome pressures of starting university, Government announces

by Telegraph, March 7, 2019

Freshers are to be offered training to overcome the “overwhelming” pressures of starting university, the Government has announced.

Students will be told how to deal with social media and the drive for “perfectionism”, under plans being developed by a new taskforce on mental health.

They will also learn about how to manage finances, how to have realistic expectations of student life and how to make friends.

Damian Hinds, the education secretary, said that moving away from home to start university can be “daunting” for youngsters.

Readers' World Book Day costumes – from the Cat in the Hat to Mr Tickle

by The Guardian, March 7, 2019

Here are some of the characters you told us about after late nights on the sewing machine

We asked you to send in your best efforts for World Book Day and you did not disappoint. Below are some of the photographs we received (we wish we could include more) and your inspiration behind the costumes.

‘There were some late nights on the sewing machine’
Fakhrul from Walsall sent in a great photo of his son Raheem’s costume (pictured above in the main image).

Education Secretary warns universities over dropout rates

by FE news, March 7, 2019

Damian Hinds is calling on universities to tackle high rates of students dropping out as new figures are published today.

Universities must do more to cut ‘damaging’ dropout rates or risk undermining the progress made in improving access to higher education, Education Secretary Damian Hinds has said today (8 March).

As new figures are published showing dropout rates by institution – identifying those with the worst non-continuation rates – Mr Hinds has challenged universities to focus on successful participation as well as admissions, particularly for students from disadvantaged and under-represented groups who are more likely to drop out.

'Harry's story shows the challenge of illiteracy'

by TES, March 7, 2019

"I give it, like, five days. I'll probably be kicked out."

Harry (pictured above) has just left the celebrated Reach Academy Feltham, in West London. He’s got a new school place at a social, emotional and mental health provision in West London. After two years, Reach’s staff have concluded that they can no longer offer Harry the support he needs when it comes to learning to read and write.

MATHS, SCIENCE SUMMER SCHOOLS IN MATHS, PHYSICS AND MEDICINE

by The Schools News Service, March 7, 2019

Debate Chamber Science and Mathematics courses are aimed at students who enjoy an intellectual challenge, and who are curious about the ways in which their knowledge can be applied to help with real-world questions. Our courses are academically intense, with an emphasis on independent thinking and collaborative problem-solving, providing a valuable insight into university level education.

Our tutors (typically Masters or PhD students) are selected for their exceptional communication skills, charismatic and inspiring classroom presence and very strong subject knowledge.

Working in groups of 12 – 14 students over several days offers participants a real chance to get to know tutors and fellow students and to explore the topics or questions that particularly interest them.

Schools must prepare students for the future of work

by UK TECH, March 6, 2019

James Uffindell, CEO and founder of Bright Network, explains why careers guidance must start at school, especially for work in tech.

This week is National Careers Week, a great initiative that promotes the indispensable value of careers education for young people across the country. Careers guidance is something that has too often been deprioritised within our education system, and this lack of focus has created a crisis of confidence in young people.

In last year’s Bright Network graduate survey of 3000+ students, we found that 39% did not feel prepared to enter the workforce and 43% were not confident they would gain a graduate role after university.

UK companies favour 'education over diversity' when recruiting

by Recruitment Grapevine, March 6, 2019

British companies give greater priority to education over diversity in the executive search process, a new study has revealed.

The data, which was discovered by Cornerstone OnDemand, claims that only 25% of UK companies said that diversity is a priority in the process, whereas more than 40% said education was the key to discovering new talent.

World Book Day: how to make your celebrations more inclusive

by TES, March 6, 2019

Karen Sands O’Connor is worried. Despite the efforts of campaigners, black and minority ethnic (BME) characters are still woefully underrepresented in children’s literature.

The most recent Reflecting Realities survey, conducted by the Centre for Literacy in Primary Education (CLPE), found that of the around 9,000 children’s books published in 2017, only 4 per cent featured a BME character.

Why readability is key for understanding online content

by TES, March 6, 2019

Teachers are constantly choosing texts for their classes to read. In doing so, they naturally evaluate how appropriate these are for their students. But is this the same for the online content that we use in class?

This process can be considerably harder. The intended audience for online content can be less clear, with no blurb to offer an overview, and no reviews from other teachers to direct or help us.

Top employers to help primary schools offer world-leading careers education

by Edexec, March 6, 2019

Damian Hinds, the education secretary, has announced that he is working with leading employers to help primary schools offer the best careers education
To mark National Careers Week, which runs from Monday 4 March to Friday 8 March, all primary school pupils will benefit from careers education developed by top industry professionals, thanks to a new initiative from Damian Hinds.

The Department for Education has published research that shows 96% of primary schools are offering tailored career activities to pupils, despite not being compelled to, and is committing ensure this reaches 100% by working with industry professionals.

Hinds said: “Careers advice has thankfully moved on from my school days, where I once did a multiple choice test and was told I should work in catering.

Superyachts and private schools: Britain's dirty money problem

by Guardian, March 6, 2019

The leak of more than 1m bank transactions has shown how an estimated $4.6bn (£3.5bn) was sent to Europe and the US from a Russian-operated network of 70 offshore companies with accounts in Lithuania.

The Guardian’s Juliette Garside has been investigating the network and where the money ended up. She tells India Rakusen that money linked to major Russian fraud cases was laundered with funds from legitimate enterprise, making it impossible to trace the original source. It could then be spent on luxury goods, private school fees and property.

Cambridge offers places only for deprived

by BBC, March 6, 2019

Cambridge University is to offer "second chance" places after A-level results for the first time this summer, in a deliberate bid to increase the number of disadvantaged students.

There will be about 100 places available but only deprived students from the UK will be allowed to apply.

The university has faced accusations of being socially exclusive.

Cambridge says the scheme reflects its wish to recruit more disadvantaged youngsters - but it is not a "quota".

WHEN OFFERING CAREERS GUIDANCE, ARE YOU LISTENING TO WHAT YOUR STUDENTS WANT?

by School News, March 6, 2019

In 2018, over 16,000 students across the UK told us about their careers aspirations and how they access careers information. In our annual survey of school and college students, we found out that:

Over 80% of students feel as if they have little to no information about apprenticeships
45% of students want more career workshops while at school/college
71% of students want to go to university and 32% of them made this decision in primary school

A-level courses 'cut in sixth-form funding squeeze'

by BBC, March 6, 2019

Funding pressures mean many sixth forms and colleges in England are cutting back on languages and sciences, the Sixth Form Colleges Association warns.

Schools and colleges have also cut back on services, including mental health support, the association says.

It is calling on the government to increase the rate of funding for students aged 16 to 19.

Provisions for Suffolk’s SEND pupils remain insufficient

by Edexec, March 5, 2019

As reported by the East Anglian Daily Times, Suffolk has failed to improve its SEND provision after a damning report
Provisions for SEND pupils in Suffolk aren’t improving quickly enough, according to the NHS and Whitehall.

Ofsted and CQC recently inspected Suffolk County Council’s SEND service to review weaknesses identified two years prior – and the response proved scathing.

Oxbridge needs student quotas to end its role in the ‘chumocracy’

by Guardian, March 5, 2019

News that Oxford and Cambridge cut the number of UK undergraduates over the past 10 years – when many other universities increased theirs – and recruited more international students instead highlights the exceptionalism of England’s two oldest but oddest universities.

They are the commanding heights of our higher education system, and close to the top of global university league tables. Their dreaming spires and sheltered quadrangles and courts are part of England’s timeless heritage. Both their success and antiquity make it difficult to ask the question whether they are still fit for purpose in the 21st century.

Elite UK school fees paid via tax haven firms, leak reveals

by Guardian Education , March 5, 2019

An elite boarding school is one of 50 British education providers to have received fees via tax haven companies that were customers of a now defunct Lithuanian bank, according to data from one of the largest ever banking leaks.

The disclosures come after ministers specifically warned private schools to undertake better due diligence over the sources of fee payments.

Charterhouse, in Surrey, describes itself as “one of the great historic schools of England”, espousing “sound Christian values”. Established in 1611 on the site of a monastery, it has educated some of the giants of public life, including the poet Robert Graves, the broadcaster Jonathan Dimbleby, and 200 years before him, the evangelical preacher John Wesley. The foreign secretary, Jeremy Hunt, is a former head boy.

Lack Of Funding And Education For Teachers Means UK Drops Four Places

by FE news, March 5, 2019

Finland emerges as the new global leader in providing future-skills education for youth, according to the Worldwide Educating for the Future Index (WEFFI).

Finland’s strong policy, teaching and socio-economic environments propel it to top of 50 economies in the second edition of the Worldwide Educating For the Future Index.