Education Update – May 2011 to June 2011

Selected items from the National scene as reported by TES

 TES 6th May 2011

  • Bishop of Oxford      (John Pritchard) maintains 70% of the C of E’s 4,800 schools will convert      to academy status within 5 years.       This is due to an agreement between them and the government that      will give dioceses powers over appointing governors and enabling them to      protect the schools’ Christian character.
  • 40% of C of E      schools have already applied for academy status and a smaller no of      Catholic.
  • Bishop John      wants to reduce the % of places given to practising Anglican families to      only 10%

Ofsted and other Inspectorates

Focus on four key areas:

  1.           I.    Pupil Achievement
  2.          II.    Quality of teaching
  3.         III.    Quality of leadership and management
  4.        IV.    Pupil behaviour and safety – especially focus on bullying
  • Schools can choose format of their self-evaluation
  • ‘Good’ schools to be inspected only every 6 years; others every 3 years

Finland is Michael Gove’s most applauded education system due to its PISA (Programme for International Student Assessment) results, especially in reading.  Finnish pupils don’t start formal school till 7 years of age until 13 years.  Formal schooling in the comprehensive system is finished between 13 and 16 as the majority of students continue their education through academic or vocational routes.  There is a strong support system for pupils: ‘No one is left behind.’

TES 13th May 2011

Blackburn’s Islamic School (Tauheedal Islamic Girls High) has such high exam results that it will only be a matter of time before it will open to non-Muslims.

Sex education

In a 1700 strong poll, almost 6 in 10 parents do not think sex education should be taught at school.  50% said it should not be taught until age 13 years.

TES 20th May 2011

Bids for Free Schools’ status from schools advocating Creationism and Intelligent Design as scientific theories will not be approved now will those advocating either of these or other alternatives to accepted scientific theories.

Teacher training crisis possible in the near future

Latest statistics from The Graduate Teacher Registry show a 13% decline in numbers applying to train as secondary school teachers.

TES 27th May 2011

New admissions code

  • Teachers’      children to be given preference for places at oversubscribed schools
  • Non-teaching staff’s      children will also be given preference at schools’ discretion

Free schools

  • 12 out of 21      free schools examined by researchers are in deprived areas
  • 7 out of 10      academies fail admission procedures

TES 3rd June 2011

Government spending

UK public spending on education has doubled in the past two decades.  Spending in 2009-2010 is £5,956 per pupil.

Best performing nation

No countries in Europe have attained the top 10 best-performing nations on classroom behaviour.  The new league table shows UK in 32nd place.  Japan, Kazakhstan and China take the top 3 places.

English Baccalaureate

Latest think-tank argues that it is going to be suitable only for the top 35% of pupils.  15.6% of pupils achieved an E Bac last year.

Free schools

Free schools will require Sencos and designated teachers for children in care to have a QTS.

TES 10th June 2011

New Ofsted measures

More than 5,300 schools with below average test results will be failed next year unless they can show improvement under new Ofsted measures next January.

Inspectors to be trained to spot extremists and intolerant behaviour in schools as part of the government’s counter-terrorism strategy which can result in action being taken against members of the teaching profession who demonstrate unacceptable views!  Specialist inspectors of independent schools will get more detailed training.  Teachers are to identify children whose behaviour suggests they are being drawn into terrorism or extremism.

Schools still have a duty to promote community cohesion.

New curriculum for independent schools

‘The Independent Curriculum’ encourages creativity and does not teach to tests.  It encourages the development of global awareness, tolerance, empathy and curiosity.


Dame Tickell Independent Report on EY education: for a copy of recommendations being made to government: