Click here to skip to content

Welfare Reform on the Web (May 2003): Education - UK - Schools

£28M TO STAVE OFF EDUCATION CRISES

R. Smithers

The Guardian, March 27th 2003, p. 16

The government acted to stave off a series of looming regional financial crisis in England by announcing yesterday an emergency bail-out of £28m for the 26 local education authorities (LEAs) which this year received the lowest increase in funding. Some of the authorities had warned they would have to axe teachers' jobs or put schools on a four-day week because of the shortfall in their budgets.

AIMING HIGH: RAISING THE ACHIEVEMENT OF MINORITY ETHNIC PUPILS

Department for Education and Skills

London: 2003

Strategy proposed seeks to:

  • meet the needs of bilingual learners and raise the achievement of minority ethnic pupils;
  • publish national data annually on performance by ethnicity;
  • require Ofsted to report on how well schools respond to the requirements of the Race Relations (Amendment) Act;
  • improve staff training;
  • ensure minority ethnic pupils are not disproportionately excluded from school.

A BLUNT INSTRUMENT

A. Tarleton

Guardian Education, March 4th 2003, p. 10-11

In an appeal to consumer power the government will ask students to rate the teaching on their courses as a guide to applicants.

CITIZENSHIP: CAN IT REALLY BE TAUGHT?

M. Talbot

The Daily Telegraph, March 26th 2003, p. 21

The author, instrumental in recommending that citizenship be made a compulsory subject, is now having second thoughts. She lists her reservations about the "programme of study" that schools are required to teach.

'DUMBED DOWN' SHAKESPEARE TEST TO BE SCRAPPED

T. Halpin

The Times, March 10th 2003, p. 4

A new Shakespeare test for 14-years-old pupils is to be scrapped after complaints that they could gain more than half the marks without showing any knowledge of the plays.

EDUCATION AND GROWTH: QUESTIONING A FALSE CONSENSUS

A. Wolf

New Economy, vol. 10, 2003, p. 10-15

Article challenges the received wisdom that investment in education fuels economic growth. Suggests that, on the contrary, economic success encourages investment in education.

EXAM SWITCH MAY MEAN ABOLITION OF LEAGUE TABLES

T. Halpin

The Times, March 27th 2003, p. 18

League tables of GCSE and A-level results may have to be abolished. Mike Tomlinson, who is leading the government's review of qualifications between 14 and 19, said that publication of school-by-school results would be incompatible with an expansion of opportunities under a baccalaureate structure.

(See also The Independent, March 27th 2003, p. 13)

INCLUDING CHILDREN WITH SPECIAL EDUCATIONAL NEEDS IN THE LITERACY HOUR: A CONTINUING CHALLENGE

C. Miller, P. Lacey and L. Layton

British Journal of Special Education, vol. 30, 2003, p. 13-20

Reports on a study which examined whether the framework for teaching the Literacy Hour can provide an inclusive learning environment for pupils with special educational needs. A survey and case studies were used to provide examples of organisational strategies and activities in literacy teaching. Authors go on to evaluate the extent to which these approaches promote inclusion in the literacy hour. They conclude that while most children were included some were engaged in alternative activities which were in reality focused on the development of communication skills.

INCLUSIVE EDUCATION: A CRITICAL PERSPECTIVE

G. Lindsay

British Journal of Special Education, vol. 30, 2003, p. 3-12

Article presents a critique of the notion that inclusive education is a fundamental right for children with special needs and that considerations of its effectiveness are therefore irrelevant. In developing his argument the author addresses a number of key topics, including the development of inclusive education, models of special educational needs and disability, and current approaches to research.

PRIMARY SCHOOLS TO MISS KEY TARGETS

T. Halpin

The Times, March 6th 2003, p. 1

Primary schools may not hit government targets in English and mathematics next year, Charles Clarke has conceded. The Education Secretary said it would be difficult to achieve the targets set by 2004.

REFORM OF A-LEVELS 'HAS FAILED TO DELIVER'

R. Smithers

The Guardian, March 21st 2003, p. 14

The government's controversial shake-up of the A-level system has so far failed to deliver its goal of broadening post-16 study, according to the educational watchdog, Ofsted.

(See also The Times, March 21st 2003, p. 19)

REPORT OF THE SPECIAL SCHOOLS WORKING GROUP

Nottingham: DfES Publications, 2003

Report proposes that special schools should:

  • increasingly cater for the growing population of children with severe and complex special educational needs;
  • be outward looking centres of excellence and work more collaboratively with mainstream schools;
  • go through a process of change in terms of leadership, teaching and learning, funding and structures, and in the way in which it works with health, social services and other agencies which provide support beyond the classroom.

REPORT POINTS UP EXTENT OF CLASS DIVIDE IN BRITISH EDUCATION

R. Smithers

The Guardian, March 25th 2003, p. 14

Britain still has one of the greatest class divides in education in the industrialised world, according to a report which reveals the attainment gap between poor and better-off children averages at 22 months. The Education and Child Poverty report, published by the End Child Poverty Group, shows that educational success in Britain is determined mainly by social class.

SCHOOLS FACE 4- DAY WEEK 'BECAUSE OF FUNDING CUTS'

R. Garner

The Independent, March 12th 2003, p. 2

A local education authority's 125 head teachers are writing to all parents in the borough warning that their children's school might be placed on a four-day week because of a funding crisis. The step is being taken in Croydon, South London.

SUPPORTING BOTTOM-UP INNOVATION: THE SCHOOL-TO-SCHOOL MARKET

J. Hallgarten

New Economy, vol. 10, 2003, p. 44-49

Successful schools are raising extra funds by setting up companies to sell services such as online learning packages or consultancy.

SILENCE OF THE LITTLE LAMBS: TALKING SKILLS IN DECLINE

R. Smithers

The Guardian, March 4th 2003, p. 3

According to the government's Basic Skills Agency, the speaking and listening skills of children starting school have deteriorated to the extent that few now enter the classroom able to recite or sing the simplest nursery rhymes or songs.

Search Welfare Reform on the Web