ACT - The Association of Christian Teachers

for Christians working in education

The job
Items relating to the work of schools and colleges, including resources and training opportunities.

Campaign to put less pressure on pupils because of Sats.

Schools are being drawn to a campaign that calls on them to put the interests of children above the pressures of the accountability system.

Primary head Jon Le Fevre wants school leaders to sign a charter which commits to not putting too much pressure on children to pass Sats, especially in Year 6.

He says 50 schools and organisations have already expressed an interest, with the campaign yet to officially launch.

“Headteachers are in this job for the right reasons but people have expressed their feeling that the accountability system is making schools act in a way that prioritises the Sats outcomes and maybe not in the best interests of the children,” Mr Le Fevre, head at Pilgrims Cross CE Primary School in Andover told Tes.

Read the detail.


Education minsters visit mostly london schools.

Education ministers have made more than 10 times as many visits in London as in the North East, the Department for Education has admitted.

The visits were counted in the time period since Damian Hinds was appointed as education secretary in January.

In a parliamentary answer, education minister Anne Milton said that 31 out of 127 ministerial visits had been made in London, with only three in the North East. A further 23 were in the South East, where all but one of the ministers have their constituency.

Read more.


How does UK education rank in the world?

How does funding and support for schools and universities in the UK compare with the rest of the world?

Every year an international comparison of education in industrialised countries is published by the OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development), providing a snapshot of trends.

The figures, picking out some distinguishing features, combine the education systems in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Read the detail.


US school brings in wooden paddle for punishment.

A school in the US state of Georgia is asking parents to consent to allowing their children to be spanked with a wooden paddle as a form of punishment.

The Georgia School for Innovation and the Classics sent a letter to parents requesting to paddle students after their third behavioural infraction.

Students who are not authorised to be paddled will instead face a suspension.

Georgia is among 19 US states that allow corporal punishment - including paddling - in schools.

"In this school we take discipline very seriously," Superintendent Jody Boulineau told local media.

Read more.


Gypsy, Roma and Traveller children missing school.

Bullying, racism and feeling left out of the curriculum are major factors in low school attendance rates among Gypsy, Roma and traveller (GRT) children community, MPs have heard.

Poor attendance was their main barrier to academic achievement, experts told the Women and Equalities Committee.

They have the worst educational outcomes of any ethnic group, with just 21 in England sitting A-levels in 2016.

But the cross-party committee heard that the picture was complex.

Sean Harford, national director for education for Ofsted, said: "Exclusions are very high - exclusions, absence, a lack of previous education, certainly in the case of Roma children coming from Eastern Europe, and areas of bullying and racism.

Read more.


Action needed in schools to prevent sexual assaults.

Two mothers whose daughters were sexually assaulted at school by other pupils are calling for action to stop other pupils being attacked. 

It is two years since MPs recommended a range of measures, after the BBC revealed more than 5,000 sexual offences at schools in three years.

Ministers say they recognise that peer-on-peer abuse can devastate victims.

New guidelines for England's schools this month set out their legal duty to protect children from such abuse.

The women wrote a letter to the BBC, which began: "We are two mothers. Each of us has a daughter who has been raped by a boy from their school."

    

In an interview last year one of the women, the mother of "Bella",  described how her daughter had been repeatedly sexually assaulted at the age of six by boys using their fingers over many weeks.

Read more.


Cyber attacks against colleges and universities.

A security analysis of cyber-attacks against universities and colleges in the UK has discovered staff or students could often be responsible, rather than organised crime or hacking groups.

A government-funded agency that provides cyber-security has examined the timing of 850 attacks in 2017-18.

Jisc found a "clear pattern" of attacks being concentrated during term times and during the working day.

When the holidays begin, "the number of attacks decreases dramatically".

The analysis of cyber-attacks on the research and academic network concludes there are "suspicions that staff or students could be in the frame".

    

Rather than criminal gangs or agents of foreign powers, the findings suggest many of the attacks on universities and colleges are more likely to have been caused by disgruntled staff or students wanting to provoke "chaos".

Read more.


Universities spent £10m on unions last year.

Universities spent almost £10 million supporting “aggressive political campaigns” by lecturers last year, figures have shown, as mass strikes disrupted exams and teaching across the country.

Data released by the government shows that UK universities spent £9.8m on paying lecturers and other employees to work for their unions during work hours.

Universities, who draw a large portion of their income from student loans, accounted for 12% of the total public sector spend on union rep pay, and more than 70% of the spend in the education sector.

Read more.


Appointments to School Teachers Review Body.

Dr Andrew Waller and Ms Harriet Kemp have been appointed to serve as members of the School Teachers’ Review Body (STRB) for 3 years from 1 September 2018.

The STRB provides independent advice to the government on pay and conditions for teachers and school leaders in England and Wales.

Biographies

Dr Andrew Waller

Dr Waller has held various HR Director roles at Unilever PLC since 2009, including most recently HR Business Partner to the Chief Information Officer and IT Executive.

Dr Waller was also HR Business Partner to the Home Care R&D organisation.

Dr Waller has been a school governor for 18 years.

Ms Harriet Kemp

Ms Kemp is currently an independent consultant, providing advice and support on all aspects of reward and benefits to a number of private sector organisations.

Previously, Ms Kemp was the Group Reward Director for Dixon Carphone PLC from 2016 to 2017. Before this Ms Kemp was Director of Group Reward and People Processes at Compass Group PLC from 2011 to 2016.


T Levels being developed.

The biggest shake-up of technical education in decades has moved a step closer today (10 September), as more leading employers throw their weight behind the development of new world-class T Levels.

Industry experts, including celebrity hairdresser Lee Stafford, have been appointed to chair new panels which will lead work on designing the content of the next set of new T Levels so that young people will gain the skills employers and the country need for the future.

From 2022 young people choosing to study the Hair, Beauty and Aesthetics T Level can be confident that they have been developed by world-famous businesses including Toni and Guy; those who opt for an Animal Care and Management T Level will be studying programmes designed by the Dogs Trust; and those looking to develop skills by studying the Human Resources T Level will have had their courses developed by experts from the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development.

Read more.


 

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