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Welfare Reform on the Web (December 2001): Education - UK - Schools

BLOOD, SWEAT AND TEARS

P. Wills

Early Education, no. 35, 2001, p.6

Presents a personal account of the management of the introduction of the new Foundation Stage of the national curriculum fur nursery and reception children.

BUSINESS MAY BACK ACADEMY FOR GIFTED

J. Kelly

Financial Times, Oct. 3rd 2001, p.10

Reports government plans to set up an academy for gifted and talented children a top university. The academy will coordinate residential, online, and local support and teaching for the top 5% of bright children in England.

COLLABORATION AND THE NEED FOR TRUST

M. Tschannen - Moran

Journal of Educational Administration, vol.39, 2001, p.308-331

Study found a significant link between collaboration with the head teacher and trust in the head teacher, collaboration with colleagues and trust in colleagues, and collaboration with parents and trust in parents. Findings argue for the importance of trust in nurturing the collaborative relationships in schools which are promoted by reform efforts.

COULD DO BETTER

J. O'Leary

Times 2, Sept. 27th 2001, p.30

Government's attempts to raise standards in education may be hampered by the loss of key advisors who have recently resigned. These include the heads of the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education, the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority, and the Standards and Effectiveness Unit.

CREATING COMMUNITIES OF REFORM: CONTINUOUS IMPROVEMENT PLANNING TEAMS

S. D. Kruse

Journal of Educational Administration, vol. 39, 2001, p.359-383

Article focuses on the development of continuous improvement planning in schools as a form of collaboration around and for student achievement and the ability of such collaboration to foster engaged, democratic, organizational forms in schools.

EDUCATIONAL RENEWAL AS DEMOCRATIC PRACTICE: "NEW" COMMUNITY SCHOOLING IN SCOTLAND

J. Nixon, J. Allan and G. Mannion

International Journal of Inclusive Education, vol.5, 2001, p.329-352

New Community School projects should have the following characteristics: 1) a focus on the needs of all pupils; 2) engagement with families; 3) engagement with the wider community; 4) integrated provision of school education, social work and health education and promotion services; 5) integrated management; and 6) multidisciplinary training and staff development.

EXAM CHIEF QUITS AFTER DEADLINES CRITICISM

R. Garner

Independent, Oct. 5th 2001, p.14

In her resignation statement, Christina Townsend, chief executive of Edexcel, pointed out that the introduction of AS-levels had increased pressure on examination boards. It had meant a 50% increase in the number of scripts to be marked and a 30% increase in the number of examiners. Dr Townsend had resigned two days after the board was criticised over marking standards.

(See also Guardian, Oct. 5th 2001, p.13)

FELT TIP PENS AND SCHOOL COUNCILS: CHILDREN'S PARTICIPATION RIGHTS IN FOUR ENGLISH SCHOOLS

D. Wyse

Children and Society, vol. 15, 2001, p. 209-218

Study investigated the nature of children's participation in their education in two primary and two secondary schools; in particular the right to express views freely in all matters affecting the child. Results showed that children's opportunities to express their views were extremely limited even where school councils were in place. Article concludes that the goal of active citizenship espoused by recent national curriculum developments will remain elusive unless educational practice changes to focus on school processes rather than products.

FIGURES THAT DON'T ADD UP

D. McAvoy

Public Finance, Oct. 5th - 11th 2001, p.24

Attributes current teacher shortages to: 1) poor pay: 2) loss of 40% of new teachers within three years of starting work in schools; and 3) rising demand for staff due to government initiatives such as the literacy and numeracy hour.

FREE TO LEARN: INTRODUCTION STEINER WALDORF EARLY CHILDHOOD EDUCATION

L. Oldfield

Stroud: Hawthorn Press, 2001

This book provides an introduction to Steiner Waldorf Kindergartens. Teachers and parents believe that children's early years should be enjoyed and not rushed. It explores ideas such as how kindergartens enable healthy child development, examines movement based learning, creative play, learning through imitation and rhythm and looks at the question of when are children ready for school.

HACKNEY COUNCIL STRIPPED OF RIGHT TO RUN SCHOOLS

S. Cassidy

Independent, Oct. 18th 2001, p.16

Education services in Hackney are to be handed over to an independent not-for-profit trust from August 2002. The new body, Hackney Education Trust, will be responsible for all education services in the borough under a five-year contract with the council.

(See also Daily Telegraph, Oct 18th 2001, p.13; Guardian, Oct. 18th 2001, p.15; Financial Times, Oct. 18th 2001, p.8)

HEADS SAY TEACHING IN PRIMARY SCHOOLS HAS DETERIORATED

R. Garner

Independent, Sept. 27th 2001, p.12 & Education Section p.10

A survey of over 250 schools shows that one in three primary head teachers is worried that the quality of teaching has deteriorated as a result of staffing shortages. One in seven schools had vacancies unfilled at the start of term. More than half of the heads said they were facing grave difficulties recruiting supply staff to cover absences.

HOW YOUTH AND EDUCATIONAL SERVICES IN THE UK ARE BEING PRIVATISED

A. Gibson and D. Price

Youth and Policy, no.72, 2001, p.50-62

Domestic reform of youth and education services is increasing private sector participation and private ownership of service infrastructure. These moves form part of an international policy engineering market access to public funds. The reform programme follows a path of first undermining confidence in the public sector, then introducing new resource allocation mechanisms and finally the cultivation of a competitive and expansionist private sector.

MUCH MORE THAN JUST TEACHER'S LITTLE HELPER

R. Garner

Independent. Education Supplement, October 18th 2001, p.2-3

Discusses the role of classroom assistants who are being recruited in ever increasing numbers by the government to reduce the administrative burdens on teachers.

PUBLIC SCHOOLS BEAT TEACHER SHORTAGE

J. O'Leary

Times, Oct. 15th 2001, p.16

Head teachers of almost 300 senior independent schools have reported more difficulty in filling posts and keeping their best staff, but few had vacancies this term. They are boosting recruitment by offering perks such as free health insurance.

(See also Guardian, Oct. 15th 2001, p.12)

SCHOOLS BASED MANAGEMENT: AN EVALUATION OF POLICY AND PRACTICE IN SCOTLAND

C. Campbell

International Studies in Educational Administration, vol. 29, 2001, p.2-18

The Scottish policy of devolved school management (DSM) began implementation in 1994. Article presents results of research based on documentary evidence (from central government, local authorities and schools) and interviews conducted with education officers and head teachers from 1995 to 1997. It evaluated the policy of DSM, explored the perceptions and developing experiences of those involved in its implementation, and considered its practical implications.

SHARING SUCCESS: THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE FIRST BEACON SCHOOLS IN ENGLAND

M. Brundrett and N. Burton

International Studies in Educational Administration, vol.29, 2001, p.19-28

In 1998 the UK government announced the creation of 75 "Beacon Schools" drawn from the highest performing institutions in England. These schools have received additional funding in return for agreement to share their success with others. Article is based on a survey of all 75 schools and upon case studies of 10 of the institutions involved in the scheme. The authors attempt to delineate the processes whereby the Beacon Schools are trying to pass on the secret of their success, and to assess the extent to which there is a tension between assisting others and the assurance of continued high quality teaching at home.

SPECIALIST SCHOOL PUPILS GET 10% BETTER RESUTLS

J. O'Leary

Times, Sept. 28th 2001, p.14

An unpublished analysis of examination performance shows that specialist schools' GCSE results were 10% better than those of other comprehensives in the Summer of 2001. An average of 54% of GCSE candidates at the 513 specialist comprehensives achieved five high grade passes.

STATE "NO GOOD AT RUNNING SCHOOLS"

J. Clare

Daily Telegraph, Oct. 16th 2001, p.11

The former chief inspector of schools, Chris Woodhead , has called for the government to stop trying to run Britain's schools. Instead parents should be given vouchers worth the cost of their children's education and allowed to spend them on a place at a school of their choice. The private sector should be allowed to run publicly funded schools free of state interference, on the model of charter schools in the US.

TELLING TALES OUT OF SCHOOL

C. Ryan

Public Finance, Sept. 28th - Oct 4th 2001, p.24-25

Discusses the true extent and causes of current teacher shortages. Problems are due to an increased demand for teachers arising from extra funding available through the "school standards grant". The literacy and numeracy hours require hundreds of English and mathematics teachers, who might otherwise be in the classroom, to act as trainers. Tougher rules for probationers are balanced by an entitlement to days out of school for training, leading to an increased demand for supply teachers.

UNACCEPTABLE PUPIL BEHAVIOUR

S. R. St. J. Neill

[London]: National Union of Teachers, 2001

Survey found that four out of five teachers believed that pupil behaviour had deteriorated since they joined the profession. More than half said they were given insufficient support in dealing with disturbed children. One in twelve teachers had been threatened by parents or pupils' older siblings at least once a term. A third had seen pupils bring offensive weapons such as knives into school, and most were verbally abused on a weekly basis. Resulting poor morale was causing teachers to leave the profession, fuelling staff shortages. Constant disruption was also depriving other pupils of education as teachers spent more time trying to keep rowdy youngsters under control.

WHEN TEACHER KNOWS BEST

R. Smithers

Public Finance, Sept. 14th - 20th 2001, p.18-20

Reviews proposals for improving the performance of failing secondary schools set out in the education white paper. These include private sector involvement, the expansion of specialist schools, dissemination of good practice through a new Schools Innovation Unit, and encouraging successful state schools to bid to run failing ones.

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