The Department for Education have provided an update on their policy towards reducing teacher workload. Lord Nash, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for the School System, has issued the following letter introducing this:
REMOVING UNNECESSARY WORKLOAD FOR TEACHERS
We are committed to removing Continue reading
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The TES is reporting that researchers are looking for secondary schools to volunteer to take part in a major new study into whether professional counselling helps young people to cope with anxieties. The £835,000 project will provide 18 schools with professional and experienced school-based counsellors at no cost for two years.
School staff will assist to identify pupils who may be helped by counselling and want to take part in the research. Students will then be divided into two groups, with half receiving up to 10 weeks of counselling and the other half being helped by the school’s existing support system.
The Guardian is reporting that home secretary Theresa May has announced that elected police and crime commissioners should be given the power to set up their own free schools to support “troubled children”. The move will be part of a major expansion of the powers of police and crime commissioners into the areas of youth justice, probation and court services to be proposed after their second set of elections take place in May.
The home secretary said that the next set of PCCs should “bring together the two great reforms of the last parliament – police reform and school reform” to set up or work with “alternative provision of free schools to support troubled children and prevent them falling into a life of crime”.
At the start of Children’s Mental Health Week, the BBC is reporting warnings from headteachers that children’s untreated mental health issues could spiral into psychiatric problems later in life unless more is done in schools, with particular concern over the situation in primaries. The National Association of Head Teachers says with a fifth of children having a mental health problem before age 11, it is a key concern. A snapshot survey of 1,455 English heads suggests two-thirds of primary schools cannot deal with such issues.
Read more at – BBC: Heads warn over pupils’ untreated mental health issues.
BCC radio 4 is running a new series of the Educators. The latest episodes are below:
UKGovChat is a weekly Twitter discussion normally taking place between 8:45 and 9:15 every Sunday evening, providing a home for Governors to learn, share, challenge and support each other and improve the governance of all of schools to the benefit of the children and young people. From the original concept being born in 2013, well, as the website says:
Exactly a week later #UkGovChat was born, delivered to over 400 eager followers in a fast and furious chat encompassing “top tips” for new governors and the biggest challenges to effective governance.
The website remains totally independent of any government or commercial interest. To find out more visit UKGovChat at ukgovchat.wordpress.com, search Twitter for hashtag #ukgovchat or follow the group @UKGovChat. The site also has an impressive list of inks to a range of useful blogs and archives of weekly chats going back to 2013. Recent chats were on subjects such as:
Professor Chris James, University of Bath, is undertaking research into the state of school governing.
Six years ago, he surveyed school governors in England to find out about the state of school governing but now there have been a number of changes to the education landscape many of which have affected the important work school governors undertake. The survey is being undertaken in partnership with the National Governors Association. Of course other organisations with an interest in school governing are supporting the survey — ASCL, the Education and Employers Taskforce, the CBI, National Co-ordinators of Governor Services, and Governors for Schools (SGOSS), and HASG will be looking closely at the results.
All governors are invited to complete the research questionnaire. It is available here until 14th April: https://www.survey.bath.ac.uk/
A report of the survey findings will be available on the National Governors Association website –http://www.nga.org.uk/ – in mid-May 2014.