Blog

Diversity Matters: Who is on your Senior Leadership Team?

Two thirds of the teaching profession are women and yet only one third reach a level of leadership. This is an incredible and tragic fact, isn’t it?!

 

For most, this might be surprising, yet in the 21st Century we have all continued to allow it to happen. Diversity across leadership teams is a highly important issue that until recently has not been valued in many schools.

 

Two years ago, I connected with six secondary school leaders via social media. They were all women and were equally exasperated by the lack of females in school leadership roles. 

 

MESMA delivers a quality job for college merger

MESMA in use

A London college has turned to a web-based management tool to secure quality assurance during a spate of strategic mergers.

Over the last three years Bromley College has undergone a number of transformations to secure the quality of FE provision in the local area, which has in turn seen it go on to complete mergers with Orpington, Greenwich Community and Bexley colleges to form London South East Colleges. 

The move has led to the creation of a college that today caters for more than 20,000 pupils studying for a wide range of vocational courses that lead to BTEC, NVQ, City & Guilds and other specialist qualifications, as well as higher education courses validated by the University of Greenwich and Canterbury Christ Church University. 

Money for Grammar Schools is only part of the solution

Alan Fraser

I’m going to start with a confession. I went to a grammar school.

At the time it didn’t feel particularly controversial, indeed my father – who left school at fifteen with a certificate saying he could read and write, and who had never earned more than £60-a-week by the time he died in 1987 – was incredibly proud of my achievement.

But today mentioning that you went to one of the nation’s hated grammar schools seems tantamount to admitting to a criminal record. Rather than being the passport to a better career that we were promised, I’m half expecting ‘grammar school attendance’ to start showing up on my annual DBS check and being used as a justification for excluding me from sensitive roles.

Protecting children from online dangers

Stella James

Recently, there has been an increasingly alarming number of reports in the media about children being targeted and groomed online. Pretty much everything our children do now is connected with being online; young people do not differentiate between online and offline life, it is simply ‘their life’. Therefore, we need to educate younger generations toensure they’re able to navigate the internet safely, says Stella James, founder of Gooseberry Planet. 

Kids to go bananas over their lunchbox

Freddy Fyffes, the cartoon character

24,000 primary schools across the UK are being invited to ask their pupils: ‘How does a banana get to your lunchbox?’

The question forms part of an educational campaign run by the charity Seafarers UK in partnership with Fyffes. It will encourage children to think about the maritime world and how 95% of UK imports come by sea, including their favourite fruit, with the UK eating more than five billion bananas every year.

Freddy Fyffes, the cartoon character, stars in a free fun activity sheet aimed at five to sevenyear olds, for use in the classroom or at home. Freddy travels from a banana farm, across the sea, to Fyffes’ ripening and distribution centres, then on to greengrocers and supermarket shelves.

Institute for Research in Schools’ “remarkable” first year

• The Institute for Research in Schools was launched in March 2016 and is now celebrating its first year

• It currently works with over 300 schools in the UK and internationally to facilitate student-led research projects and empower teachers in STEM

• IRIS has launched over 10 projects this year, including TimPix, a project run in association with the UK Space Agency that was recently promoted by NASA to schools in the US

 

How to Create Better Learning Environments for Pupils

classroom

The schools of the UK are facing a number of challenges at the moment; not least of this is the continuing rise in pupil numbers. The need to squeeze greater numbers of pupils into buildings designed with much smaller intakes in mind is forcing a lot of schools to compromise on other aspects of their learning environment. Add in changing curriculums and, often, squeezed budgets and creating the best possible learning environments becomes a bigger challenge than ever before.

Emphasise Flexibility

Shabby Schools Are Failing Students & Teachers According To Education Sector Boss

Gerard Toplass, chief executive officer of British Thornton

New Research Reveals Major Decline in Spend on Learning Environments

The head of one of the UK’s leading education sector suppliers has said that a growing number of ‘shabby schools’ across the UK are not only failing pupils but are contributing to the lack of new entrants to the teaching profession, when linked to new schools spending data revealed by the company. 

New research by British Thornton, the UK’s largest educational furniture manufacturer, has shown that cuts to funding in the sector have led to significant reductions in investment in learning environments, to the detriment of both students and teachers alike. 

School plays

parrot

PLAYSTAGE JUNIOR

We have been selling quality school plays to English speaking schools around the world for 15 years. Since Playstage Junior started in 2002, our plays have been performed by English-speaking primary schools and youth groups in 43 countries! And we are always reaching new markets! In 2016, for example, as well as attracting many, many customers from the UK, USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa, we sold plays to schools in Mexico, Thailand, Vietnam, Tibet, The Virgin Islands, Bermuda, Guatemala, Malta, Gibraltar, Spain, India, China, Russia, Botswana, Nigeria and Hong Kong.

8 families selected for national sugar health challenge

Fitzgerald family

8 families have been chosen from almost 200 applicants to pioneer ways to reduce their sugar intake.The goal is to help parents across the UK with tips for their children.

 

Eight families with 16 children between them, aged from 1 to 10 years old, have been chosen out of almost 200 families to take part in a national Sugar Smart 12 week challenge.

Each week, from early March, the family will receive a simple and fun challenge that they will be taking on with gusto. The aim is to raise the family’s understanding of how much sugar they are eating and how to find ways to reduce it.

Troves Solutions for Education

In the ever-changing world of education, Trovex provides robust and durable products to meet the high demands education environments ask for.

As one of the UK's leading education solution companies, Trovex has developed unrivalled excellence in the education sector providing top performance Washroom & Cubicle Systems, Wall Cladding, Doorset Systems and Protection Materials by pioneering innovation, design and quality.

The large assortment of colour options available makes the design stage of your project enjoyable and fun "Trovex were very helpful and easy to work with as our ideas evolved during the design stage of the project", said Simon Harvey - Focus Washrooms.

Is your classroom technology safe from damage & theft?

lock and charge

Whilst classroom technology continues to transform the learning environment and empower students with the tools that they need to succeed, it also puts schools under additional pressure, due to the financial investment that is involved. As the use of devices increases in our classrooms, so does the risk of damage and theft, so what can schools do to ensure the technology they are investing thousands of pounds in is secure? James Symons, CEO, LocknCharge offers some advice.  

Eurobrick’s solution to space shortages for schools

school

The pressures on schools to increase the number of available pupil places has been widely reported in recent years. The predicted shortfall of some 750,000 places presents major challenges to local authorities, headteachers, architects and contractors. How do you rapidly increase the size of a school with an ever decreasing budget? To say creative, reliable solutions are essential is an understatement.