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Warning over ‘looming secondary school place squeeze’ | BBC News

7 Sep

The Learning Renaissance

A potential shortage of school places looms ahead in secondary schools in England, councils are warning.

The Local Government Association says schools will be thousands of places short over the next few years as a population bulge moves up from primary.

It says schools in 12 councils will be over capacity by 2018, rising to nearly half of councils within five years.

But the Department for Education attacked the figures as “thoroughly misleading”.

Read more on the BBC website: Warning over ‘looming secondary school place squeeze’ | BBC News

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Graham Brown-Martin on what is driving the Department for Education

4 Sep

The Learning Renaissance

A timely article on the state of the UK Department for Education, its policies and practices, from Graham Brown-Martin of The Revolution…

The government position on education since Michael Gove, now championed by Greening and Nick Gibb, Secretary of State for School Standards, has been firmly fixed on dismantling progressive, personalised, learner-centred education. Instead, government ideologues, their advisers and think tanks, have driven through retrograde policies that seek to make school education both teacher-centred and teacher-proof.

Read the full article here: Jobs for the boys | Medium

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Maths teachers hit out at ‘extraordinary’ funding decision | BBC News

27 Aug

The Learning Renaissance

Teachers have hit out at an “extraordinary decision” to cease funding a key A-level maths project.

Underground Mathematics had won the backing of a government commissioned review into post-16 maths in England.

It helps students “deepen understanding of central concepts”, said Prof Adrian Smith in a report to ministers in July.

The government says funding for the five-year project was always due to run out in September, but teachers want to know why it was not renewed.

In a letter to Education Secretary Justine Greening, the Association of Teachers of Mathematics and the Mathematical Association say the decision makes no sense.

Read the full story on the BBC website: Maths teachers hit out at ‘extraordinary’ funding decision | BBC News

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Don’t you just hate “Target Grades”

23 Aug


Well perhaps not “hate” but they do concern me for a number of reasons.

It won’t be long before the UK starts school again but I would bet even now there will be computers crunching Key Stage or end of year test results running them through algorithms to predict future performance in order to set target grades.

This worries me, does it you?

I am no expert in statistics but I assume that with enough data and analysis you could begin to predict what could happen in the future based on what has gone before. But – this is only a prediction, a percentage chance that something could or could not happen. Life or car insurance must be much the same with certain categories resulting in much higher premiums as they are more likely to have an accident than others. The difference being as, far as insurance goes, if the…

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Time to Seriously Question Ofsted?

21 Aug


Speaking at the Headteachers’ Roundtable Summit in February 2017, I mooted the idea that someone would challenge Ofsted in the courts and that Durand Academy may well be the first.  They were already set on that course; now it has happened.  This post was written for the TES and was published on the 15th August 2017.

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Injunction lifted on critical Ofsted report | BBC News

17 Aug

The Learning Renaissance

The future of one of the UK’s largest adult-training providers is in question after it failed to block publication of a critical report by Ofsted inspectors.

Learndirect had obtained an injunction against publication but this was lifted by the High Court on Monday.

The report, which will be published on Thursday, is likely to highlight “ineffetive” managers and high non-completion rates among students.

The company said it was “extremely disappointed” with the verdict.

It is understood the Sheffield-based company, which offers apprenticeships and adult training to thousands of trainees in sites across England, was awarded the lowest possible grade – grade four – by inspectors.An investigation by the trade magazine FE week has revealed the company had been issued with warning notices by the Skills Funding Agency.

Read the full story on the BBC website: Injunction lifted on critical Ofsted report | BBC News

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Helping Students Develop Their Values… and Your School Ethos

16 Aug

The Learning Renaissance

Being proactive and asking students to record their own values is a useful exercise in developing a philosophical understanding of what motivates and impassions people. building an ethos based on positive values is what characterises a great school.

Maurice J Elias shows you how in this Edutopia feature: Helping Your Students Identify Their Values | Edutopia

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