Schools

Free period products to be available in schools and colleges in England | Education

Tampons, sanitary pads and other period products will be made freely available to all state schools and colleges in England starting next week, with the launch of a scheme funded by the Department for Education. The scheme follows the government’s commitment last year to pay for sanitary products for primary and secondary schools, in an effort to tackle “period poverty”, which can cause girls from low-income families to missschool. “We know that it is not easy for everyone to access…

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Behaviour battleground: isolation booths divide opinion among teachers | Education

The use of isolation booths in state schools has become one of the most contentious issues among teachers in England, even if public concern over pupil behaviour has faded from the headlines since the 1990s. Social media has become an almost nightly battleground between teachers with conflicting views on behaviour management and the use of internal exclusion or removal rooms within schools, where disruptive pupils are taken out of class and sent to study elsewhere under supervision. What the debate…

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When school is an isolation cubicle with three toilet breaks a day | Education

Six days a week Brendan, 17, leaves at six in the morning for his job on a building site and doesn’t get home until tea time. It’s his first job and he is loving it. “I am very, very proud of him,” says his mother. But it could have turned out very differently. Brendan left his academy trust school in Normanton, West Yorkshire, without any GCSEs, having spent much of his time in an isolation cubicle, banned from talking to…

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AstroTurf Alert: National Parents Union is Thinly Veiled Union Busting Backed by Billionaire Cash – Education Article

 How do you do something disgusting without hurting your image?     If you’re the Walton Family, you hide behind a mask.     That’s what their latest AstroTurf front group is – the so-called National Parents Union (NPU).     It’s a way to bust teachers unions, destroy public schools and profit off of students behind the guise of a friendly parents organization.     Oh, it’s all funded with oodles of cash from the Walton family and other…

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London council launches free school meals pilot scheme | Education

A scheme to offer pupils free school breakfast and lunch irrespective of income has been launched in an attempt to tackle the growing food poverty crisis in parts of the UK. Hammersmith and Fulham council rolled out the scheme in west London on Wednesday. It said the national free school meals system was not working, leaving many children going to school hungry and remaining hungry throughout the day. Officials say the threshold for families to qualify for free school meals…

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England region plans world-first for climate change teaching | Education

A region of northern England plans to become the first place in the world to have a UN-accredited climate change teacher in every state primary and secondary school. Jamie Driscoll, the new mayor of the North of Tyne combined authority, said every school in the area would have the opportunity to train a member of staff to give lessons on global heating and the impact of the climate crisis. The region is working with the creators of EduCCate Global, a…

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Grammar school pupils ‘gain no social or emotional advantages’ by age 14 | Education

Grammar school pupils gain no social or emotional advantages by age 14 over children who do not attend a selective school, a study suggests. The research by University College London (UCL) is the latest to call into question the government’s plans to expand selective state education, which have been fiercely opposed by educationalists and policymakers. Recent studies have suggested that grammar schools only outperform their non-grammar peers academically because they select well, rather than because they add value, and do…

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Controversial Michaela free school delights in GCSE success | Education

Amid the myriad joyful images on social media, showing ecstatic pupils and their teachers celebrating GCSE results, one particular success story stood out. Michaela community school, a controversial free school known for its strict behaviour policy, picked up its first set of GCSE results on Thursday, five years after opening its doors to its first pupils. “Michaela pupils SMASH it,” tweeted the headteacher, Katharine Birbalsingh. Her colleagues were similarly delighted. “I’m so proud to be a Michaela teacher today,” tweeted…

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‘Every moment here is magical’: Essex school wins dementia award | Education

A primary school in Essex has won a national dementia award for an innovative intergenerational project, which brings together isolated older adults and children in need of additional support with extraordinary results. The project at Downshall primary school in Ilford is one of a growing number of intergenerational initiatives in the UK designed to bring benefits to both old and young, while helping to fill the gaps left by cuts to local community support services. At Downshall, older adults experiencing…

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Everyone welcome: inside the schools that haven’t expelled a child since 2013 | Education

Jason Thurley, headteacher at Beacon academy, near Grimsby, leans across the table explaining why yet another of his pupils was excluded before joining the school. “He’d brought in a £1 potato gun. It was at the bottom of his bag and so he goes up to his form tutor and says, ‘I don’t want to get into trouble with this, sir, can you take it?’ And he gets permanently excluded. The school said ‘we have a zero-tolerance policy on firearms’.”…

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Robots Will Never Replace Teachers. They Can Only Displace Us – Education Article

 My favorite movie of all time is “2001: A Space Odyssey.”     And my favorite character is the computer HAL 9000.   In the future (now past) of the movie, HAL is paradoxically the most human personality. Tasked with running the day-to-day operations of a spaceship, HAL becomes strained to the breaking point when he’s given a command to lie about the mission’s true objectives. He ends up having a psychotic break and killing most of the people he…

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Ofsted to bring back routine inspections for outstanding schools | Education

Outstanding schools and colleges in England are to be stripped of their exemption from regular inspections, overturning a policy introduced by the former education secretary Michael Gove. The Department for Education said that from September it plans to return to a five-year cycle of inspections for state schools rated by Ofsted as outstanding , fulfilling an election promise by the Conservatives and an earlier pledge by the education secretary, Gavin Williamson. Since 2012, schools with an outstanding rating have been…

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Learning foreign languages should be compulsory, says report | Education

Learning a new language should be compulsory for pupils up to the age of 16, according to a new report highlighting the UK’s recent abysmal record in encouraging young people to study languages other than English. The report published by the Higher Education Policy Institute (Hepi) cites an EU-wide survey showing that just 32% of young people in the UK say they are able to read or write in more than one language, compared with 79% of their peers in…

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‘I was angry I couldn’t even say the word’: UK teens refuse to be silent about periods | Education

For most of her life, Molly Fenton had dreaded getting her period. Every month, the 17-year-old student at Llanishen high school in Cardiff would feel ashamed: uncomfortable, untouchable, unclean. “I couldn’t even say the word ‘period’ without feeling embarrassed,” she says. She is not the only girl to have felt anxious about attending school when she was menstruating. A 2019 survey by the girls’ rights charity Plan International UK found that more than half of girls aged 14-21 have missed…

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Ofsted report says 200,000 pupils stuck in low achieving schools | Education

More than 200,000 pupils in England are being educated in schools that have performed poorly for at least 13 years, despite being inundated with improvement initiatives from central and local government, a report shows. The schools’ regulator Ofsted has identified 415 “stuck” schools, in all phases of education, that have received persistently poor inspection ratings and have been locked in a cycle of low performance for so long they have potentially failed two whole cohorts of children. Ofsted defines stuck…

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No grammar schools, lots of play: the secrets of Europe’s top education system | Education

It’s a warm September afternoon in the Kallio district of Helsinki. Out in the Franzenia daycare centre playground, groups of four- and five-year-olds roam contentedly. “Would you like an ice-cream?” asks one, having set up her elaborate “stall” on the edge of the sandpit. Kindergarten staff move among the children, chatting, observing and making written notes. There is nothing outwardly distinctive about the centre, though with 200 children, it is the city’s largest. It is a tall, somewhat dour former…

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