Pop Up Quiet Spaces - now available in the Library -
The Department for Education will be moving websites at the end of March 2014. They are migrating to GOV.UK available at: https://www.gov.uk/
Most of the information for schools and children’s services professionals will be available on GOV.UK shortly, along with information published by the Standards and Testing Agency (STA) and the National College for Teaching and Leadership (NCTL).
Some information has already been moved over, such as news, speeches, publications, transparency information and other corporate content. There is a new homepage for the Department of Education within this site, available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-for-education where you can access all new material as well as sign up for email alerts for when new material is published.
All material on the DfE website has now been reviewed and rewritten it to make it shorter, clearer and easier to understand. Content that is no longer current has been archived.
If you have bookmarked a page on the DfE site, you will automatically be taken to:
• the equivalent page on GOV.UK
• the National Archives website, if the content is now out of date
Click on the link below for more information
We’ll keep you posted of any further developments.
Hurrah! - Beginning Monday 17th March - St Peters library will be open 24 hours 7 days a week to further support all University of Sunderland students and staff with your research, exam revision and assignment preparation. Extended opening hours end on the 4th April.
For more details and to check for future bursts of 24/7 opening at St Peters library (hint: there’s another one coming up after easter too!) check our opening hours online.
Competition for school places intensifies on 'national offer day' -
Scramble for school places begins as letters go out to parents of 500,000 children in England, disappointing one in seven families
Late on Monday – on what has become known as national offer day – emails and letters were sent out to the parents of 500,000 children in England who have applied for places at secondary schools. About 45 families who listed King Ethelbert as their first choice will find out that their child has not been awarded one of the 150 places on offer and many of the 306 who listed the school as a second, third or fourth choice may also be disappointed.
Those families who missed out will be far from alone. London schools have experienced a 5% spike in applications as a baby boom led to an 8.2% rise in the school age population between 2001 and 2011 (compared with a reduction of 0.2% nationally). Across London 69% of pupils received an offer from their first choice school, while nine in 10 got a place at one of their top three preferences.
Competition for places has also increased in Birmingham, where 14,000 pupils transfer to secondary school this year. Some 70.3% of parents in the city won a place at their first choice school – down three percentage points on last year.
In Bristol, 77% of parents got their first choice, falling from 82% last year, while in Manchester the percentage of successful first choices fell from 81% in 2013 to 76% this year.
click on the title link to read more
Check out the new logo on the library website.
By signing in with your user ID and password you’ll be able to locate a computer that’s free and available to use.
New research into women’s contribution to UK film and TV industries -
A new and ambitious project, funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), will be the first of its kind to document women’s contributions to the UK film and television industries spanning 1933 to 1989.
Led by Dr Melanie Bell, of University of Newcastle, in collaboration with…
Top UK headteacher: Michael Gove is 'pressing the rewind button' -
Tricia Kelleher, head of top-ranking private school, says education secretary’s reforms will lead to ‘cul-de-sac’ of learning
The principal of the British school ranked top in the world in the international baccalaureate diploma has launched a passionate attack on Michael Gove’s education reforms. Tricia Kelleher accused the education secretary of “pressing the rewind button” and warned that attempts to chase global education-league rankings will lead schools into a creativity-free “cul-de-sac” of learning.
The head of the independent Stephen Perse Foundation in Cambridge said Gove was living in a parallel universe in which he bulldozed through reforms to qualifications and failed to recognise the importance of learning itself, including the role of new digital technologies in the classroom.
Stephen Perse equips each secondary-age pupil with an iPad and is working with Apple to publish its own curriculum apps. It is also contemplating abandoning handwriting in favour of screen-only working.
Kelleher rejected Gove’s recent ridiculing of the use of popular cultural references, such as Mr Men and Disney, as learning tools: “Why not, if they contribute to understanding and learning?”
click on title link to read more
Educating Yorkshire's Mr Burton: 'half the battle is raising aspirations' -
English teacher Matthew Burton hit the headlines after helping Musharaf Asghar find his voice. He explains why the show also helped teachers to be heard
Matthew Burton is an English teacher at Thornhill Community Academy, which became the focus of hit Channel 4 documentary series Educating Yorkshire. One of his defining moments on the show was helping GCSE student Musharaf Asghar overcome a crippling stammer using a technique borrowed from the film The King’s Speech. His progress will be featured when the programme returns for a Christmas Special on Thursday.
My first week in the classroom sealed the deal. I felt like I had arrived. The first time you stand in front of the class as a member of staff is absolutely petrifying. But, having said that, it felt absolutely right. I felt I could make a difference and do some really good stuff. I knew it was the right thing to be doing.
Half the battle is raising students’ aspirations. The bond between the staff and students at Thornhill is absolutely wonderful. There is a real sense of community and pride in the place we work. The kids are incredible in terms of their personalities and they all have a desire to work, to improve, to be better.
The school is situated in quite a deprived area and while that’s not a challenge in itself, some of our kids are from backgrounds where it’s actually a miracle if they turn up on time. What we do is work to improve things for them. Whatever we can do to help them get a step up. When they are in year 7 they may not have an interest in higher educational studies but our job is to make sure that they want to go on and make something of themselves, to go into employment and be successful.
click on the title link to read more
Schools need to avoid 'selection by estate agent', says report -
Sutton Trust suggests that popular state schools should use lotteries to allocate places
Popular state schools should use lotteries to allocate places to avoid selection by estate agent, bank balance and cunning, a new report published by the Sutton Trust has recommended.
A survey commissioned by the trust found that more than a quarter of middle-class parents say they have moved house to live in areas with good schools, with more than 15% of parents from upper income bands saying they had moved to be near a specific school.
A minority of parents with children at state schools admitted to fiddling the admissions system to get into the school of their choice, with 2% of parents admitting they bought a second home and used that address so their children could gain access to a specific school, including 5% of those in the upper-middle classes.
"school admissions need to be fairer so that the best schools aren’t just for those who can afford to live nearby, with ballots used particularly in urban areas," said Sir Peter Lampl, chairman of the Sutton Trust. "The government should consider extending its pupil premium to provide means-tested vouchers to enable working class parents to provide the extra lessons and cultural activities that many better-off families take for granted."
click on the title link to read more