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Sutton Trust: PARENT POWER 2018
September 14, 2018
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In 2013 the Sutton Trust published Parent Power?a landmark piece of work authored by Prof Becky Francis and Prof Merryn Hutchings demonstrating how social class influences parents’ ability to support their children in their schooling. Five years later Parent Power 2018 revisits the cultural and financial resources parents use to boost their children’s chances of educational success.

Based on a survey conducted by YouGov, the Sutton Trust’s Rebecca Montacute and Carl Cullinane find similar trends to those found in 2013. From choosing the best school to attend, to paying for out of school extracurricular activities, better-off parents continue to have the upper hand when it comes to navigating the education system and preventing their children from falling behind in school.

The report also reveals new challenges. The ‘hidden costs’ of education such as uniforms and travel expenses are an increasing concern for parents from lower socioeconomic backgrounds, while schools are demonstrating increasing reliance on extra financial contributions from parents following recent school budget cuts.

KEY FINDINGS
  • When choosing what school to send their child to, parents with higher socioeconomic backgrounds were more likely to attend open days, read Ofsted reports, speak to parents at the school, read league tables and consult local authority or other education websites.
  • Parents in lower socioeconomic groups were more likely to indicate that the cost of travel, and potential extra financial costs such as uniforms, played a significant role in their decision making. Over half of working class parents (56%), compared to 34% of professional parents.
  • Just one in five parents (20%) reported that they were familiar with Progress 8, the Department for Education’s new headline measure for school league tables.
  • Parents in higher socioeconomic groups were much more likely to report a variety of strategies to gain access to their preferred school, such as moving to an area with good schools or to a specific catchment, along with employing private tutors for entrance tests. Read more
Schools and Employers Must Collaborate to Help Young People into Work
September 5, 2018
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Off the back of last week’s GCSE results, research published by HR Magazine, shows parents feel more must be done by employers and schools to provide work experience for young people.

Most parents (82%) believe schools and employers need to work more closely to prepare their children for the workplace, according to research from the Chartered Management Institute (CMI)

The survey also highlighted that despite 78% of parents believing work experience provides the best way for young people to gain employability skills, only 32% agree that employers are actually doing enough to provide that work experience.

Separate CMI research showed that 85% of employers want students to have gained work experience.

It found that parents are roughly as confident about the careers advice they give their children (56%) as they are in that provided by their children’s schools (54%).

Parents’ views play an important role in students’ decision-making. In previous research, 77% of young people said that parents are their number one source of careers advice when leaving school.

Read more

More Pupils in England Reach Expected Standard at Key Stage 2
July 11, 2018
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More children across the country met the expected standard at the end of primary school this summer in English and mathematics, amid rising education standards in England, Minister for School Standards Nick Gibb has announced.

Figures published show:

  • 64 per cent of pupils met the expected standard in all of reading, writing and mathematics at Key Stage 2 nationally. This figure was 61 per cent in 2017;children with hands up
  • 75 per cent met the expected standard in reading, up 4 percentage points on last year;
  • 78 per cent met the expected standard in writing. This figure was 76 per cent in 2017;
  • 76 per cent met the expected standard in mathematics, up on 1 percentage point on last year; and
  • 78 per cent met the expected standard in grammar, punctuation and spelling, up 1 percentage point on last year.

The new national curriculum and assessments have set a higher standard in schools and today’s rising results show more pupils are meeting that standard, thanks to the hard work of teachers and pupils, and government reforms.

This year’s results are the third to be released following the introduction of a more rigorous national curriculum assessments in Summer 2016, bringing primary education in line with the best in the world.

Standards are rising in primary schools. There are now 154,000 more six-year-olds on track to become fluent readers today than in 2012, in 2017 the attainment gap between disadvantaged primary pupils and their more affluent peers had narrowed by 10.5 per cent since 2011, and England’s rise up the international PIRLS rankings for literacy put the success of the government’s reforms on a global scale.

School Standards Minister Nick Gibb said: Read more

A Guide to Apprenticeships for the School Workforce
July 2, 2018
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In April 2017, the government changed the way it funds apprenticeships in England.

Some employers are now required to contribute to an apprenticeship levy, and there have been changes to funding for apprenticeship training for all employers.

This guide provides information specific to schools on what apprenticeships are, how your school can use them to benefit its workforce, and how the apprenticeship levy and public sector target apply to schools. There are also links to further guidance and support.

This guidance is for school leaders and governing bodies in all schools in England, and for local authorities too. It may also be of use to professional associations, unions and staff working with apprentices.

A Guide to Apprenticeships for the School Workforce

Strengthened Guidance for Schools and Colleges on Safeguarding

The revised Keeping Children Safe in Education statutory guidance now provides additional advice to help school and college staff deal with allegations of child-on-child sexual violence and sexual harassment, following a 10-week public consultation launched in December.

The majority of the responses to the consultation on the guidance, published today (17 May) welcomed the additional advice on how to support victims of this type of ‘peer abuse’ and the new guidance will be applicable to all schools, including primary schools, on how to best support children of all ages.

Minister for Children and Families, Nadhim Zahawi, said:

Pupils and parents rightly expect schools to be safe places, where children are free to enjoy their time in education without fear of violence or harassment.

Schools and colleges play an important part in keeping children safe, so it’s right that we take the necessary steps to ensure staff have the guidance and support they need to deal with concerns about a child’s wellbeing.

Read more

Education Secretary to Set Out Vision for “Clearer” School System

Gov.uk is reporting that Education Secretary Damian Hinds will clearly set out how the Government will “trust school leaders to get on with the job” by clarifying who schools are accountable to and boosting development opportunities for new teachers.

In an address to more than 350 school leaders at the National Association of Head Teachers’ (NAHT) annual conference in Liverpool on Friday 4th May, the Secretary of State will set out plans for a clearer system of accountability that will let good schools get on with their job, free from the “spectre” of multiple inspections by making it clear that “the only people who should go to schools for inspections are Ofsted”.

Mr Hinds will announce a consultation to replace the “confusing” system of having both floor and coasting standards to measure school performance, with a single measure to trigger support for schools. This will be backed by a clear statement on when schools convert to academy status to drive improvement.

In a pledge to the profession, published today, the Secretary of State will underline his commitment to give school leaders the confidence to raise standards in their schools and free up teachers to focus on what really matters in the classroom.

The Education Secretary is expected to say:

Accountability is vital. Children only get one shot at an education and we owe them the best…where they are being let down we need to take action quickly – so no one ends up left behind.

But what I’ve found from speaking to many of you these last few months is that there is also real confusion within the sector… I believe school leaders need complete clarity on how the accountability system will operate.

Read more

Data Protection: Toolkit for Schools
April 25, 2018
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The Department for Education has published guidance to support schools with data protection activity, including compliance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). 

To prepare for the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) coming into force in May 2018 all organisations handling personal data, including schools, need to have the right governance measures.

This guidance will help schools develop policies and processes for data management, from collecting and handling the data through to the ability to respond quickly and appropriately to data breaches.

As this is new content DfE are asking schools and other interested parties for feedback. These responses will then be used to improve and update the guidance.

Please send any comments by 1 June 2018 to data.modernisation@education.gov.uk with the subject heading ‘GDPR toolkit feedback’.

 

 

School and College Funding Inquiry Launched
April 23, 2018
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The Education Committee launches an inquiry to inform the Department for Education’s bid for funding for schools and colleges, and to consider whether a longer-term vision needs to be taken of education funding in England.

The inquiry

While the Government is already reforming the way in which money is distributed to schools through the introduction of a national funding formula for schools, the spending review process will determine the overall level of public funding for schools and colleges. The Committee’s new inquiry aims to examine whether a longer-term plan is needed for investment in education and what resources are required to ensure schools and colleges get the support they need. The inquiry will also look at the effectiveness of targeted funding such as the pupil premium and how the new national funding formula will be implemented.

Read more

Keeping School Students Motivated in New Zealand
April 5, 2018
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The following Q&A was recently posted on the CareersNZ website. 

Dear Careers NZ

The end of term is coming up and I’m worried about my teenage daughter. She’s usually a good student, but lately she’s been unmotivated to do any of her schoolwork or homework and is falling behind. I try to be encouraging and help her realise the importance of doing well at school, but she just doesn’t see it. What can I do to get her back on track?

Worried dad

Dear worried dad

We know how difficult it is to feel helpless as you watch the young person you care about drift off track. But don’t fret, we’ve got some tips and exercises that other parents have successfully used to get young people motivated to study and get back on the right path.

1. Empathise and see their point of view

It’s helpful to sit down with your young person and talk through the situation. Avoid being confrontational and instead make it clear you’re trying to see things from their point of view. Empathise with their problems and try to help them come up with a solution.

If there is an area of schoolwork or an extracurricular activity they excel in, try to find out the reasons why they’re doing well in them. Could these reasons be used to motivate them in other areas?

Malpractice for GCSEs, AS and A levels: 2017
January 5, 2018
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Official statistics for malpractice in GCSE, AS and A level exams in summer 2017.

The main trends were:

  1. 2,715 penalties were issued to students in 2017, up from 2,180 compared to 2016 and representing 0.015% of entries (compared to 0.011% in 2016).
  2. Having access to a mobile phone was main reason for student penalties.
  3. 895 penalties were issued to staff, up from 360 in 2016. This still involves a very small proportion of the total number of staff in England (350K FTE staff).
  4. Exam boards are more likely to issue formal written warnings for similar offences rather than informal advisory notes this year.
  5. 120 penalties were issued to schools or colleges, down from 155 in 2016.
  6. The actual number of penalties issued to schools or colleges is small given the overall number of centres (over 5,000).

Read more HERE

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