Tristram blames Dave for ‘free schools’ failure

GindonHallChristianSchoolNow it’s becoming personal. When the second north east free school in a number of days was placed in special measures, Tristram Hunt blamed the fiasco on David Cameron himself.

‘David Cameron’s failing free school programme is damaging school standards – too many are failing their Ofsted inspections, one third have employed unqualified teachers and a complete lack of local oversight is allowing underperformance in these schools to go unchecked for far too long. Continue reading

Does Ofsted need Inspecting?

Ofsted-logo-gov_ukTom Sherrington, Head of Highbury Grove School in North London, has complained of “enormous flaws and absence of proper validity trials” in the current Ofsted inspection system.

Mr Sherrington, writing in his own blog, had rejected the idea that schools “can be judged in a meaningful way via inspections”. Continue reading

Teachers in France condemn the Charlie Hebdo murders

CharlieHebdoAmbulance The French teachers organisation Fédération syndicale unitaire (FSU) issued a statement today (7th January) on the Charlie Hebdo attack.

‘The FSU condemns the appalling attack carried out today against Charlie Hebdo. It expresses its complete solidarity with the victims and personnel of Charlie Hebdo. It offers its condolences to the victims’ families. Currently twelve people, journalists and policemen, have paid with their lives for the right of expression. Continue reading

Mrs Thatcher’s vision: schools Independent of Local Authorities

Letwin's note to Mrs Thatcher

Letwin’s note to Mrs Thatcher

The recently released Cabinet Papers from the 1980s show Mrs Thatcher as being keen on the idea of making state-funded schools independent of local authorities. It is a vision which for the political parties has something of an all-conquering character given its adoption by all the main parties. Mrs T may no longer be with us but her mark runs deep in a our national affairs. Continue reading

Happy Christmas to One and All

ReindeerBagWe wish all our readers a happy Christmas.  We fervently hope that 2015 will see a change in the general direction of education and society towards a future in which a great education is provided to all children by their local school and in which the poverty and disadvantages that hold so many back are overcome.

This dream will not come true by itself. Campaigners for a better future for all our children have had a busy year. They need to have a good break to relax with friends and family. Their energies will be needed in 2015 if we are to achieve at least some of the progress that we know is possible.

Tristram Hunt writes about Labour strategy for SEA magazine

By John Bolt

In the DeceTHunt2mber edition of the SEA Journal, Education Politics, Tristram Hunt contributed a substantial article focussing mainly on the school curriculum. This article represents one of the more detailed statements of Labour’s approach to the curriculum and SEA is pleased to provide the opportunity for this to be shared. Continue reading

Selective education is rising up the agenda: it’s no time for fudging

Artists impression of the Sevenoaks "annexe"

Artists impression of the Sevenoaks “annexe”

According to the Kent on Sunday newspaper (page 11) Nicky Morgan is expected to approve the renewed application for a Sevenoaks “annex” to the Weald of Kent Grammar School.

The Conservatives have blown hot and cold on selective schooling. Some recognise that selection at eleven doesn’t have sufficient political legs to run very far but others just dream of a return to the way things were. Continue reading