What’s been in the news just lately?
- Maths anxiety is real and early intervention is vital according research from the Centre for Neuroscience in Education at the University of Cambridge. The recommendations include *Teacher training should clearly highlight the role of both cognitive and affective factors behind maths learning in schools and *Policy makers should be conscious that emotional blocks can have substantial impact on learning potential.
- The Committee for Linguistics in Education has launched Language Analysis in Schools: Education and Research (Laser) – a campaign to introduce some linguistics into the UK curriculum.
- Paul Cosford, the medical director of Public Health England, has told the Times it should be socially unacceptable to leave a car running near school gates.
- Parents protesting about LGBT+ lessons at a Birmingham primary school have been warned that they risk attracting “extreme fringe movements”.
- Ofsted carried out a research project on knife crime in education. Their report sets out findings and recommendations.
Knife crime has a huge impact on children and the communities in which they live, and not just in London but nationally. It is a societal problem and it cannot be tackled by schools or single agencies alone. It is important that the findings of this report are read in that context. Schools can only do so much.
Recommendation 1: Local community safety partnerships should fully involve schools, colleges and PRUs in developing and implementing local strategies that aim to address knife crime and serious youth violence.
Recommendation 2: All schools and academies in London should ensure that their exclusion policy reflects the practice set out in the Department for Education’s statutory guidance. Local authorities should have a strategic response to permanent exclusions. They should also, in conjunction with regional schools commissioners, challenge schools and multi-academy trusts when exclusions do not appear to be in line with statutory guidance.
Recommendation 3: The Department for Education should collect data from schools about managed moves in the same way in which it collects information on permanent and fixed-term exclusions.
Recommendation 4: Safeguarding partners should involve school leaders at a strategic level in assessing the needs of children and young people in their area, and in planning and delivering early help services in response to those needs. Schools need to participate actively in local arrangements as required under ‘Keeping children safe in education’ statutory guidance.
Recommendation 5: Local safeguarding partnerships should facilitate all agencies including schools and colleges in challenging each other’s practice if they believe any agency is failing to contribute to the local strategy to protect pupils from knife crime.
Recommendation 6: Schools and colleges should share full information with one another when pupils and learners move schools, pupil referral units or alternative provision or move to further education, to safeguard them and other pupils and learners.
Recommendation 7: Pan-London safeguarding partners should provide challenge to schools and colleges and, when necessary, drive improvement in how well schools and colleges share information with others to promote children’s safety when those children move schools or begin further education, including via a managed move or when they are permanently excluded.
Recommendation 8: The Metropolitan Police Service needs to establish a clear and consistent protocol and memorandums of understanding with schools that ensure that it and schools routinely share information about children for the purposes of safeguarding.
Recommendation 9: School leaders should consider how their personal, social, health and economic education (PHSE) curriculum reflects local safeguarding issues and trends, including knife crime.
Recommendation 10: Pan-London bodies should consider ways in which they can support schools in ensuring that external organisations that are delivering anti-knife crime and gang affiliation sessions can provide a high-quality and impactful contribution to the school PHSE curriculum.
Recommendation 11: Safeguarding partnerships and school leaders should raise awareness of the dangers of grooming and criminal exploitation among both parents and children.