An investigation by the Sunday Times has revealed that a huge breach of government data has led to gambling firms gaining access to data on 28 million students including names, ages and addresses. The gambling firms have utilised this information to verify ages of people who use the sites and claim to be over 18 years old.
Amanda Spielman the Ofsted Chief Inspector who has been under strong criticism has come out fighting and told schools that she will not ignore schools “narrowing the curriculum” which has resulted in “hollow grades” in her annual report published yesterday.
A leading UK geneticist has opened a debate but stating that schools should make use of students scores from genotyping tests as a way of personalising education more closely to each students needs. Professor Robert Plomin, told the audience at the HMC conference (as association of elite independent schools) that genotyping could be utilised to develop “polygenic” scores that then enables specific tailored learning for each pupil.
A potential watershed moment happened yesterday when a vote cast during the annual Labour conference in Brighton resulted in favour of all publicly funded schools coming back under the control of local authorities therefore ending the time of academies and multi-academy trusts.
The new reception baseline assessment pilot which started this term has reportedly had early problems with almost 200 schools pulling out before the term and scheme even started. There are still 9,400 schools taking part but it’s an early hit.
According to an experienced teacher who completed her NQT year 10 years ago the autumn term is by far the most challenging and is is when NQTs require the most support and help with mental health issues. Statistically the autumn term is the most difficult for NQTs with more leaving the profession than the other two terms put together.
Over the next two weeks every year one pupil in England will sit the national phonics screening tests. During this period schools will label so called “non-words” as alien words or perhaps monster or nonsense words. Every school in england is required to teach reading through a phonics method and these tests are designed to ensure that the correct teaching is happening.
Potential new leaders of the Conservative party have all stated they will allocate significant extra funding for schools. The extra funding promised is a minimum of £5,000 per pupil from Boris Johnson, and extra £1 billion pledged from Michael Gove with Matt Hancock outstripping both by pledging an extra £3 billion.
A government school behaviour expert has stated that progressive student centred teaching has had a negative impact on classroom behaviour because teachers are failing to adress low level disruption in the classroom. Tom Bennet said that progressive teaching methods which were first popular in the 60’s and 70’s made the assumption that if lessons were well planned and engaging that students would simply behave.
It is far more rare these days to find a classroom teacher with grey hair, and it is not because people have stopped ageing or are under less pressure in the job. Could it be because the UK education system is such that when teachers reach their 30’s they are no longer incentivised to stay in the classroom?