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

SEN and EHC Plans

Statements of SEN and EHC plans in place

(Tables 1 and 3)

There were 285,722 children and young people with statutory Education, Health and Care (EHC) plans and 34,097 children and young people with statements of special educational needs (SEN) maintained by local authorities as at January 2018. This gives a combined total of 319,819 children and young people, an increase of 32,529 (11.3%) from 287,290 as at January 2017.

The combined total of children and young people with statements and EHC plans has increased each year since 2010.

Read the full report.


Call for Evidence on what is being done to improve educational outcomes of children in need.

Consultation description

This call for evidence asks what professionals across education, children’s social care, health and other specialist services are doing to improve the educational outcomes of children in need. We want to hear about the support being offered in and out of school so that these children can achieve their potential.

We have launched the children in need review and published the data and analysis on children in need which shows that overall these children have poorer educational outcomes than other children. There are, however, some children who are able to succeed in spite of the challenges they face.

Children in need are a legally defined group of children, assessed by social workers as needing help and protection as a result of risks to their development or health, or who are disabled.

Take part.


'National Teacher Learning Day'

A ‘National Teacher Learning Day’ is being held to prevent teachers from having to do continuing professional development in their spare time.

The organisers say they have already got more than 100 schools signed up across five regions for the event, which will take place on an inset day in July 2020.

The day is the brainchild of Debra Kidd, the teacher and author who set up the Northern Rocks education conference in 2013.

Earlier this year, Ms Kidd announced that the 2018 conference – which took place on Saturday – would be the last Northern Rocks, because she was concerned that holding the event on a weekend had created “an additional workload burden” for teachers.

Speaking to Tes, Ms Kidd said that when she set up Northern Rocks, there were "probably about two or three Saturday [CPD] events across the year", and that teachers organising their own CPD "felt really empowering".

Read more.


Education and GDPR

Despite high levels of awareness regarding the incoming EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) only 22 per cent of schools, colleges and universities out of 500 surveyed felt their data protection policies were compliant.

Furthermore, 70 per cent said that if they fell foul to a data breach, they wouldn’t be able to show that the correct procedures were in place.

These findings are the result of a survey conducted by NW Security Group, a leading provider of security systems, consultancy and training services.

The research asked head teachers, governors, IT, security and facility managers in the North West to determine their awareness levels of, and adherence to, the upcoming GDPR.

The survey found only 22 per cent of respondents believe their data protection processes are GDPR compliant and 64 per cent are aware of the GDPR but require further information regarding its impact.

Read more.


AS level entries fall by 60%

Entries to sit AS levels have fallen by almost 60 per cent on last year, provisional figures from Ofqual show.

The number of GCSE entries in 2018 increased by just under 1 per cent compared to 2017, but there was a fall across all non-English Baccalaureate subjects except art and design. 

A level entries dropped slightly by 3 per cent on last year.

Entries for English A-level subjects have fallen by 14 per cent since 2016.

Overall entries for AS subjects in England fell from 659,880 to 269,090 in 2018, continuing a declining trend which was seen in 2016 and 2017.

In 2015, AS-level entries stood at 1,331,955, meaning that entries have now cumulatively dropped by 1,062,865.

Ofqual said that the drop is “largely due to the decoupling of AS from A levels”, which has meant less schools are interested in offering the qualification.

Read more.


School Leaders thing GCSE reforms disadvantage SEND pupils.

Nearly three quarters of school leaders think changes to GCSEs have disadvantaged pupils with SEND, a poll has revealed.

The head of one special school warns the reforms have put pupils "10 steps back" and forced them to sit alternative qualifications that are less well-regarded by employers than GCSEs.

A survey by Tes and the Association of School and College Leaders put the following question to school leaders: "Some heads are concerned that the removal of coursework from GCSEs will disadvantage pupils with SEND. Do you believe this to be true?"

In response to the question, which was answered by 422 ASCL members from schools and colleges in England, 73 per cent replied "yes".

Read more.


Diverse racial mix better for pupils.

Pupils in secondary schools with a more diverse racial mix are much more positive about people of different ethnicities, say researchers.

The more mixed the school, the warmer feelings pupils are likely to have towards other races and ethnicities.

The study - from the London School of Economics and the University of Bristol - looked at the attitudes of 4,000 teenagers in English state schools.

Prof Simon Burgess said it showed how schools could change social attitudes.

The study examined young people's attitudes towards people of other ethnicities - such as whether they had friends from other racial groups.

    

It follows warnings about a lack of social cohesion in some communities and whether different ethnic groups were living parallel lives.

Read more.


Stabbed boy not given GCSE exemption.

A boy who says he cannot sit his GCSE exams after being stabbed may be held back a year because his exam board will not honour his predicted grades.

The 16-year-old lost part of his lung when he was knifed in the random attack in Enfield, north London, on 7 May.

The Joint Council for Qualifications (JQC) rejected pleas from his head teacher and MPs to award the pupil his predicted grades of A*-A.

It said candidates must complete 25% of their exams for the grades to qualify.

The Highfield School pupil said he was not "physically or mentally" ready to take any of his GCSEs.

Read more.


Parents threaten to remove children.

Parents say they are considering removing their children from a school rated "outstanding" amid concerns over bullying.

The Colne, in Brightlingsea, is part of the Thrive Partnership Academy Trust.

One parent told the BBC his daughter had been "horrendously" bullied and had last week called him from the school toilets in tears.

The school said it "takes any allegation of bullying extremely seriously".

In a statement it said: "[The school] takes appropriate action to quickly deal with any issue brought to our attention.

    

"We cannot comment on an individual case, but have an open door policy for students or their parents to raise any concerns they have with us."

Read more.


League tables stigmatise white working class areas.

The way secondary school league tables in England are now devised is unfairly stigmatising schools in white working-class areas, head teachers say.

They say the format is "toxic" for schools with a combination of high levels of deprivation and few pupils speaking English as a second language.

"Disenfranchised" communities will be even more disillusioned if their schools are unfairly blamed, say heads.

The Department for Education says the revised rankings have become "fairer".

Geoff Barton, leader of the ASCL head teachers' union, said the league-table changes had been welcomed as an improvement but the patterns emerging meant it was "definitely time to look at it again" and talks with the Department for Education were expected.

Read more


 

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