What are some of the news items that have caught my eye this week?
- It was Safer Internet Day on Tuesday (06.02.2018) but things are far from safe for children. The NSPCC is calling for immediate action on children’s online safety criticising the government for failing to implement proposals to make young people safer online a decade after they were made in a government-commissioned report. The NSPCC point out that 11 out of 38 proposals were ignored and 4 are now out of date.
- Ofsted chief Amanda Speilman argues that religious extremists are using schools to narrow children’s horizons and “pervert education”. She says,
Rather than adopting a passive liberalism that says anything goes, for fear of causing offence, schools leaders should be promoting a muscular liberalism.
- If your students have ambitions to be billionaires then engineering is what they need to study at university. Research from recruitment agency Aaron Wallis Sales Recruitment, looked at the Forbes‘ list of the 100 richest people in the world and found that 75 of the world’s richest 100 people have a degree, and 22 out of these 75 had studied engineering.
These were the top five degrees amongst the world’s billionaires:
- Engineering – 22
- Business – 16
- Finance & Economics – 11
- Law – 6
- Computer Science – 4
- A method of parenting that means children get to make their own decisions is called ‘unschooling‘, also known as autonomous, child-led or delight-directed learning.
The Department for Education say that,
Parents have a right to teach their children at home but all children must get a safe and suitable education.
You can find out more about why unschooling and home education are not the same thing on the following BBC video.
- Politicians have argued that lessons in basic first aid and cancer detection should be part of PSHE. It is astonishing that first-aid has never been mandatory in schools.
- This might be a shock for some but there is life beyond London! Andrew Otty writes in the TES and says that education leaders need to get out of the London bubble and get real about tackling the lack of achievement in rural communities.
- Become a teacher and earn £1/2 million a year! Sounds great and it is for those ‘fat cat’ teachers earning more than footballers and the Prime Minister combined.
- If you are poor then you’ll never shake the poverty shadow off. Researchers at Huddersfield and Sheffield universities analysed Department for Education figures and found that since 2010, council areas with the highest levels of deprivation and need have faced the biggest cuts. Also read what the The Association of Directors of Children’s Services Ltd has to say about children being short changed in their report from – A Country That Works For All Children
This report calls for “a marshalling of resources across the various government departments, a reaffirmation of the value of preventative services and the establishment of a cross-government review to understand better the reasons for, and links between, rising levels of child poverty and demand for children’s statutory services.”
- Poor numeracy remains endemic in the UK. 78% of adults in the UK have numeracy skills below GCSE. Take a look at the National Numeracy report A new approach to making the UK numerate.
- We shouldn’t be surprised to learn that rogue head teachers are talking parents into homeschooling troubled children at risk of exclusion so their results do not count against the school.
- Pearson has announced that its school textbooks will be updated to include “same sex” couples in their questions to ensure they are “LGBT inclusive”.
- The Education Endowment Foundation say that ‘Effective evidence-based teaching strategies can fail with poor implementation.’