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Understanding the Educational Background of Young Offenders
August 6, 2019
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This summary report sets out the key findings from an analysis of young offenders in the youth justice system.

Key findings

For those young offenders sentenced in 2014 that were at the end of Key Stage 2 (KS2) in academic year 2007/08:

  • Those sentenced to custody had lower attainment at KS2 than those given Youth Rehabilitation Orders (YROs), Referral Orders (ROs) or cautions. 47% of those sentenced to custody for less than 12 months achieved the expected level in Maths at KS2. 56% achieved the expected level in reading and 28% achieved the expected level in writing at
  • The results for those given a custodial sentence of 12 months or longer were marginally better with 52% achieving the expected level at KS2 in Maths, 58% in reading and 33% in

For those young offenders sentenced in 2014 that were at the end of Key Stage 4 (KS4) in academic year 2012/13:

  • Those given custodial sentences had lower attainment at KS4 than those given community sentences or cautions. 1% of those sentenced to less than 12 months in custody achieved 5 or more GCSEs (or equivalents) graded A* – C including English and
  • Of those sentenced to a referral order, 14% achieved 5 or more GCSEs (or equivalents) graded A* – C including English and Maths. The equivalent figure for those given a caution was 17%.

For those young offenders sentenced in 2014 that were at the end of KS4 in academic year 2012/13:

  • 44% of those given custodial sentences less than 12 months were known to be eligible for Free School Meals (FSM). For those given custodial sentences of 12 months or longer, 44% were known to be eligible for FSM. The equivalent figure for YROs was 40%.
  • 45% of those sentenced to less than 12 months in custody were recorded as having Special Educational Needs (SEN) without a statement and 28% were recorded as having SEN with a statement.
  • 46% of those sentenced to YROs were recorded as having SEN without a statement. The equivalent figures for those sentenced to referral orders was 42% and for cautions was 38%.

For those young offenders sentenced in 2014 that were recorded as being 16 or 17 years old on their sentence date:

  • 31% of those sentenced to custody for 12 months or longer were looked after at 31st March 2014. The equivalent figure for those sentenced to custody for less than 12 months was 27%.
  • Over 90% of those sentenced to custody had a previous record of being persistently absent from school (missing 10% of sessions within a school year).
  • 23% of those sentenced to less than 12 months in custody have been permanently excluded from school prior to their 2014 sentence date. For those sentenced to 12 months or longer in custody, 16% have a previous record of being excluded from school prior to
Documents

Understanding the educational background of young offenders: amended summary report

Understanding the educational background of young offenders: summary report

DfE Team July 2019
August 2, 2019
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Gavin Williamson
Education secretary

The MP for South Staffordshire since 2010, Williamson previously served as Theresa May’s chief whip and defence secretary, before he was sacked following allegations he leaked confidential information, allegations he denies.

During his time as defence secretary, Williamson commissioned a report into how military values could benefit schools. It has yet to be published.

He has also previously campaigned for a better funding settlement for schools, focusing on regional variations in funding between his own rural constituency and other better-funded areas.

As well as leading the department, it has also been announced that Williamson will “lead” on skills, after the government failed to replace Anne Milton as minister of state for skills and apprenticeships.

Responsibilities

  • early years
  • children’s social care
  • teachers’ pay
  • the school curriculum
  • school improvement
  • academies and free schools
  • further education
  • higher education
  • apprenticeships and skills
Nick Gibb
Schools minister

The MP for Bognor Regis and Littlehampton survived the latest reshuffle despite rumours of his impending departure from the department he has served for most of the past decade.

Gibb has already served a combined six years and five months in the role of minister of state for schools, and seven years and two months’ service at the department.

Appointed as schools minister by David Cameron in May 2010, Gibb served in the role until September 2012, when he was replaced by Liberal Democrat David Laws and returned to the backbenches.

But he didn’t stay away from the department long. He became a junior minister for school reform in July 2014, and returned to the minister of state role the following May after the Liberal Democrats left government following their heavy general election defeat.

He is the government’s main cheerleader for a knowledge-rich curriculum, strict behaviour policies and rigorous testing of pupils.

Responsibilities 

  • recruitment and retention of teachers and school leaders (including initial teacher training, qualifications and professional development)
  • supporting a high-quality teaching profession (including links to National College for Teaching and Leadership)
  • reducing teacher workload
  • admissions and school transport
  • national funding formula for schools and school revenue funding
  • curriculum, assessment and qualifications (including links with Ofqual)
  • school accountability (including links with Ofsted)
  • personal, social, health and economic education (PSHE), relationships education, relationships and sex education (RSE) and children and young people’s mental health
  • preventing bullying in schools
  • behaviour and attendance, exclusions and alternative provision policy
Lord Agnew of Oulton
Academies minister

Agnew, the founder of the Inspiration Trust academy chain and a faithful disciple of the academies programme, also remains in his post following Johnson’s reshuffle.

The Conservative peer is a controversial figure, in part because of his background in business and outsourcing, but also because of his regular outbursts about school finances.

Last year, he got into hot water after he wagered schools a bottle of Champagne that he could find additional savings in their budgets. He has described himself as being like a “pig hunting for truffles” when it comes to making savings.

His personal wealth remains tied up in a blind trust for the duration of his time as a minister. He also does not receive a salary for his ministerial duties.

Responsibilities

  • free schools, university technical colleges and studio schools
  • academies and multi-academy trusts
  • faith schools
  • independent schools
  • home education and supplementary schools
  • intervention in underperforming schools
  • school improvement (including teaching school alliances, national and local leaders of education and school improvement funds)
  • school governance
  • school capital investment (including new school places, school condition, land and playing fields)
  • counter extremism and integration in schools, further education colleges and sixth-form colleges
Kemi Badenoch

Children’s minister

The MP for Saffron Waldren replaced Nadhim Zahawi, who moved to the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.

Previously a back-bencher, Badenoch has repeatedly called for an increase in school funding, acknowledging in parliamentary contributions that the government now asks schools “to do much more than they ever have”.

Schools Week reported this week how Badenoch will immediately face pressure from the schools community to address a crisis in SEND funding.

The think tank IPPR North recently found that the amount of funding available for pupils with the most complex needs has reduced by 17 per cent across England since 2015.

The government has also announced that Badenoch will help cover the skills brief handed to her boss Gavin Williamson after former skills minister Anne Milton was not replaced.

Responsibilities

  • children’s social care including child protection, children in care, adoption, care leavers, social work, local authority performance and family law
  • special educational needs including high needs funding
  • education policy in response to the race disparity audit
  • safeguarding in schools
  • disadvantaged pupils – including pupil premium and pupil premium plus
  • school sport, healthy pupils and school food, including free school meals
  • early years policy including inspection, regulation and literacy and numeracy
  • childcare policy, inspection and regulation
  • delivery of 30 hours free childcare offer
  • social mobility including opportunity areas
  • DfE contribution to cross-government work to tackle rough sleeping
Jo Johnson
Universities minister

This isn’t the first stint at the DfE for the MP for Orpington and brother of Boris. He previously served in the same role between May 2015 and January 2018 before moving to the transport department and eventually resigning over Brexit.

Johnson was also previously a minister for London and cabinet office minister. Before that, he was director of the Number 10 policy unit, advising David Cameron.

Like his brother, he attended Eton College and the University of Oxford. However, unlike Boris, he is on the pro-European left of the Conservative Party.

Responsibilities

According to the DfE, his responsibilities “will be confirmed in due course”.

Williamson to Personally Take on Skills Remit
July 31, 2019
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The education secretary will be supported by the new children’s minister in delivering the brief, DfE confirms.

Education secretary Gavin Williamson will personally lead on the skills brief, the Department for Education has confirmed. 

He will do so with support from newly appointed children’s minister Kemi Badenoch – a former apprentice who completed her A levels part-time at an FE college. 

The announcement follows days of speculation on whether there would be a dedicated skills minister in Boris Johnson’s government and the resignation of former apprenticeships and skills minister Anne Milton last week. 

The DfE said this morning that, as already announced, Jo Johnson would be returning to the department, and this would be “in his previous role as universities minister, in addition to also returning as a minister at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy”.

A DfE spokesperson said:

“All ministerial appointments have now been made and the education secretary will be leading on the skills brief, with support from the new children’s minister Kemi Badenoch.

“As the prime minister has said, further education and skills will be a priority for this government – and the education secretary taking the lead for this vital work is a reflection of that commitment.”

In his first appearance in Parliament as prime minister last week, Boris Johnson said he had already discussed the issue of further education and skills with the newly appointed education secretary, and it would be a priority.

“Yes, it is a great thing that 50 per cent of our kids should have the ambition to go to university, but of course it is equally important that other kids should acquire the skills they need that can be just as valuable, can lead to just as fantastic a career, and it is vital we invest now in further education and skills,” he said. 

Response to the Appointment of Gavin Williamson as Secretary of State for Education
July 25, 2019
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Rt Hon Gavin Williamson CBE MP, has been appointed Secretary of State for Education in Boris Johnson’s first evening in office as Prime Minister.

Gavin was previously Secretary of State for Defence from 2 November 2017 to 1 May 2019. He was Chief Whip (Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasury) from 14 July 2016 to 2 November 2017. 

Gavin was known for his innovative ideas while in his previous Defence Secretary role, which also ended with a little bit of controversy. Reports in the mainstream media were widely shared whilst he was in the Defence Secretary’s post, such as innovative cost-saving ideas like arming tractors with guns, disguising missile defense systems as drinks lorries and re-purposing ferries as landing craft.

Williams was removed from post as the Defence Secretary over the Huawei 5G leak scandal by previous Prime Minister Theresa May, where he was accused of leaking information from a National Security Council meeting. Williamson strenuously denied any involvement in the Huawei leak and no formal charges were brought against him. 

So what is the Sector Response to the news about Gavin Williamson taking up the Secretary of State post?

Steve Frampton, President of the Association of Colleges (Aoc) said:

“The job of Secretary of State for Education is one of the best, and most important, in government. There is the potential to change the lives of millions of people, transform our communities, and support the long-term success of business and our economy.

Gavin Williamson has stepped into the role at one of the most crucial times in modern history. The House of Common’s own Education Select Committee this week released a report that warns that the education system risks “reaching breaking point” unless government acts. And so we urge him to act and act quickly.

Report after report, expert after expert have been clear, colleges have been over-looked and under-funded, having faced a decade of unprecedented cuts. The new Secretary of State has the potential to shape a legacy in which the forgotten 50% are remembered and supported, businesses are equipped with the skilled staff they are crying out for, and our communities and people across the country can thrive. That legacy can only happen if he prioritises further education, including with real, meaningful and sustainable investment in colleges. We look forward to working with the new Secretary of State to make this happen.”

Tom Bewick, Chief Executive of the Federation of Awarding Bodies (FAB) comments:

“It’s great to see a state educated politician take over the helm at the Department for Education. Gavin Williamson will be judged on the basis of one overriding objective: and that is his ability to secure more investment in further education and skills. He needs to make the case to the Treasury that you can’t secure a world-class workforce on the cheap. Improving skills, productivity and social mobility is a shared challenge. Top of his priority list should be to sort out the financial sustainability of the Apprenticeship Levy. He should resist the calls from business to turn the Levy into a general skills fund; and instead, ensure the money is targeted at below Level 6 apprenticeships. This should include a focus on more 16-24 year olds being able to benefit from the learning and earning route to success, without them having to rack up huge graduate debts. 

“From FAB’s perspective, we’d like to see the new ministerial team become a genuine champion of the awarding and assessment industry. We export more qualifications and expertise than any other country on the planet. Attacking the value of vocational qualifications therefore is not a sensible way of building parity of esteem. It only undermines the hard work of many learners and teachers. We look forward to discussing his predecessor’s various qualifications reviews; as well as playing our part in constructively helping the government to deliver on its promises of turning the nation into a leading system of technical and vocational education.”

Universities Need to Address the ‘Stark Disparities’ in Graduate Outcomes
July 1, 2019
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New data shows the wide variation in graduate outcomes depending course and institution.

Universities need to address the ‘stark disparities’ that see students get significantly different earnings and employment outcomes at different institutions despite doing the same subjects, the Education Secretary has said (26 June).

New data released today show the wide variation in average earnings and employability by course and institution 1, 3 and 5 years after graduation, and reinforces to prospective students completing their A Levels this week that where they choose to study really matters.

Damian Hinds has praised the universities that are leading the way for student outcomes, including future earnings and employability, but expressed his concerns at those delivering similar courses and not yielding the same results.

Last month Mr Hinds expressed concerns over courses not offering value for money for students and taxpayers, and today’s data shows that some universities aren’t giving students the same positive outcomes that other students on similar courses benefit from. Previous research by the IFS has shown that variation in outcomes cannot be solely attributed to differences in students’ prior attainment and social background.

Expected salaries are only one of the drivers when it comes to choosing a university and course. Today, Mr Hinds has highlighted the importance of courses that contribute to the UK’s rich and diverse culture and society.

Education Secretary Damian Hinds said:

Studying at university has the potential to expand horizons, enrich understanding and transform lives, and we have more data available than ever before to help students make the right decision to achieve that. We know that potential earnings is a driver for many when it comes to choosing a university, and today’s data will help thousands choose the right course for them.

Of course, future earnings aren’t the only marker of a successful degree, we need to also look at employability, social impact and the important cultural value which enriches our society.

What I am concerned about though is how a course at one university can generate drastically different outcomes and experiences compared to another one offering the same subject, whether that’s potential earnings, employability and even teaching quality.

It cannot be right that students studying the same subjects at different institutions, and paying the same fees, are not getting the same positive outcomes which are evidently achievable. All students should feel they are getting value for money and the stark disparities between some degrees show there are universities that need to improve and maximise the potential of their courses.

Last year analysis by the Institute for Fiscal Studies showed that women who study at the lowest returning course earn on average 64% (approximately £17,000) less than the average degree after graduation. For men, this figure is 67% (approximately £21,000) less.

This month a student survey from the Higher Education Policy Institute showed that more than a third (36%) of students said they would have made a different post-18 choice if they were given the opportunity again. These options included choosing a different institution (12%) or course (8%), both (6%), or choosing an alternative route such as an apprenticeship (4%).

The Government has transformed student choice by increasing the data available and the data today will help students opening their A Level results on 15 August find the right course and institution for them.

Two new apps launched earlier this year, backed by Government funding, which use graduate outcomes data to help prospective students make better choices about where and what to study.

ThinkUni, created by AccessEd, works as a personalised digital assistant to access information, while TheWayUp! created by The Profs, is a game where players can simulate career paths.

Universities Minister Chris Skidmore said:

Deciding where and what to study at university will be one of the biggest choices young people will make, so we want students and their parents to have the best possible information about higher education.

This data is an invaluable tool to help prospective students make the right choice for them and know what to expect from the course they choose. I hope the next generation of students will take advantage of all the data this government has made available to help them start their career on the right path.

The department’s flagship rating system, the Teaching Excellence and Student Outcomes Framework (TEF), which awards universities with a Gold, Silver or Bronze rating encourages high-quality teaching and provides another tool to help students make informed decisions on their post-18 options.

Last month Philip Augar’s independent panel for the post-18 education and funding review published its recommendations to the Government, with a focus on delivering value for money for students and taxpayers. The Government will now consider the panel’s recommendations before concluding the review at the Spending Review.

The universities regulator, the Office for Students (OfS), has placed a condition of registration on providers to deliver successful outcomes for all of their students. The OfS has the power to take action where a provider is not meeting this criterion, including imposing sanctions, and in the most serious cases deregistration.

75% of Traineeships Lead to Apprenticeships or Jobs
June 26, 2019
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A new achievement rate measure will be introduced to boost transparency around traineeships, according to the government

Three-quarters of young people who complete a traineeship go onto start an apprenticeship, further study or get a job within 12 months, the Department for Education has said.

The number traineeships fell for the first time in 2017 and, at the time, the Association of Employment and Learning Providers (AELP) urged the government to take action to save the programme.

Traineeships are an education and training programme aimed at helping 16- to 24-year-olds to prepare for an apprenticeship or work. They were launched by the coalition government in 2013.

The DfE has announced that a new achievement rate measure will be introduced for the academic year 2019-20 in a bid to boost transparency and highlight the progress of trainees.

The measure will help the government to monitor the effectiveness of the traineeship programme, and assist young people in making decisions about their futures.

In order to encourage more people into traineeships, the government is providing £20 million through the Adult Education Budget for further education and training providers.

‘A positive step’

Apprenticeship and skills minister Anne Milton said that traineeships were a great way of giving people of all ages and from all backgrounds the opportunity to learn new skills and go on to have successful careers.

“I’m thrilled that this report shows how traineeships are supporting young people to start their apprenticeship journey, get their first job or go to further study,” she added.

“This new measure we have launched today will also provide greater transparency and help young people make informed decisions about their next steps.”

Mark Dawe, AELP chief executive, said that the announcement was a positive step towards reinvigorating traineeships, and encouraging more young people to take advantage of the programme.

“AELP particularly welcomes the separate measurements of achievement confirming the programme’s original objectives of progression into an apprenticeship, job or further education.  

“In the light of this, we will be urging providers to seriously take a fresh look at traineeships with a view to increasing the number of opportunities available,” he said.

David Hughes, chief executive of the Association of Colleges, said: 

“It is important that we do not lose the stepping stone programmes that allow people to progress to the levels of competence that employers are seeking. These changes will help recognise the many positive outcomes from traineeships which colleges are helping to achieve,” he said.

T Levels: The NexT Level Branding
June 4, 2019
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New T Level branding unveiled to boost awareness of the new courses ahead of the 2020 rolloutT Levels

With the introduction of T Levels just around the corner, the new branding has now been unveiled to stakeholders and providers ahead of the official launch of T Levels in 2020.

The launch will be the first step towards raising awareness of T Levels in schools and colleges ahead of the 2020-2021 academic year.

The ‘NexT Level’ brand logo, which has been designed in consultation with employer panel members, FE providers, young people and parents, will enable 2020 providers to promote the benefits of T Levels to young people in the process of deciding their route into post-16 education.

Providers and stakeholders have now received a brand toolkit, including brand guidelines, leaflets and social assets to help to recruit the first wave of T Level students and encourage employers to offer industry placements.

Read more

Education Secretary Calls for an End to Low Value Degrees
May 28, 2019
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New analysis identifies courses where students aren’t earning enough five years after graduating to repay student loansDamian Hinds

Universities and higher education providers offering poor value degrees are letting down thousands of students and costing the taxpayer millions, the Education Secretary has warned today (26 May).

Damian Hinds has called on institutions to drop or revamp courses delivering poor value for money as new analysis shows that on more than one in 10 of all courses, there is a 75% chance that graduates won’t be earning enough five years after leaving university to start making loan repayments.

Read more

£15 Million Investment to Help Keep Families Safely Together
May 24, 2019
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Up to 40 new areas will benefit from £15 million to expand promising innovative approaches to keeping families safely togetherFamilies together

Children at risk of being taken into care are set to benefit from programmes that tackle the root cause of family problems, by strengthening the expert support available from social workers, addiction specialists and psychiatrists.

The new programme, Supporting Families; Investing in Practice, will help families work on issues together, including those impacted by domestic violence, substance misuse or addiction, in order to help create stability in the home for young people and prevent them being taken into care, where that is in their best interests. This is part of wider Government work to improve outcomes for children in need of support of a social worker, by creating home and school environments in which they can thrive.

Applications to the programmes can be made here.

Modelled on existing Family Drug and Alcohol Courts (FDACs) and a programme known as Family Group Conferencing, the innovative new projects will be rolled out in up to 40 new council areas. The Government has today announced up to £15 million over the next year, following the emerging success of these existing programmes.

Read more

Crackdown on Schools Failing to Promote Vocational Qualifications
May 22, 2019
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Schools must stop blocking employers and colleges from speaking to their students about alternative non-academic options‘I want schools to talk about the whole range of things they might do after 16 or after 18 including apprenticeships and college,’ education secretary says to A-levels and university, the education secretary has said.

Damian Hinds has warned the government will take action against schools that are still refusing to open their doors to organisations that want to promote apprenticeships and vocational courses.

Speaking to The Independent, Mr Hinds said: “I want schools to be talking about the whole range of things that they might do after 16 or after 18 including apprenticeships and college options

“I think it is important that children have that knowledge. It is not for everybody to be pursuing a university route, and there are plenty of other really high-quality options and routes available.” Read more