See beyond the smoke and mirrors and act on school pollution

 David Fitzgerald

THERE is one thing that dominates debate about air pollution and it informs everybody’s view of one of the greatest health problems we face.

There is one simple reason for this. The toxic chemicals expelled from cars are tangible. We can taste them, see them and smell them and their short and long-term effects on our health are well documented. 

Historically, change in this area is something that has come from the top. We have relied on governments to act on our behalf but the next great clean air revolution could - and should - turn all that on its head.

The Winners


We’re delighted to announce the winners of My EPIC Era 2017.  

In January 2017, 60 second histories launched a national history competition for schools in a bid to engage pupils in the joy of history.  By the time the competition closed on 31st March, we had received loads of super (and very creative) entries.  

Our judges had great fun pouring through all the drawings, models, writings, videos and songs etc. from schools across the country.  The standard once again has been pretty EPIC and it has been fantastic to see the creativity and enthusiasm of pupils demonstrating their fascination for history.

Pupils win TV tour for classmates in Roald Dahl centenary competition


Pupils from two primary schools stepped into the exciting world of television at Discovery Channel on Friday after their classmates scooped first prize in a national Roald Dahl competition.

Alfie Richards, 9, from Irthlingborough Junior School in Wellingborough, and Raiya Mann, 7, from Glendower Prep School in London were the winners of Discovery Education’s Sweet Inventions Competition, which encouraged children to step into the shoes of Willy Wonka by inventing their own sweets. The competition was held to mark the centenary of author Roald Dahl’s birth, and attracted thousands of entries from across the UK. 

Strengthening the foundations of global education

• Education experts from around the world gathered to discuss and make recommendations as part of UNESCO’s Sustainable Development Goal 4

• Central topic of the event was the fragmentation of teacher training, and the impact of failing recruitment and retention

• A report summarising the recommendations made at the summit will be presented to UNESCO as part of the Education 2030 Framework for Action

At London’s National Liberal Club on Thursday 4 May 2017, education experts from around the world gathered to discuss UNESCO’s Education 2030 Framework for Action, focusing specifically on the impact and improvement of teacher training worldwide. 

Educater announce Rising Stars partnership

Gareth Heggie

Educater is delighted to announce an exciting new partnership which will see the Rising Stars Progression Frameworks incorporated into its STATonline primary assessment tool, enabling teachers to record pupil progress, gather evidence and plan against the Rising Stars Progression Frameworks. 


Frameworks for English, Maths, Science, Computing and History will be included as an option alongside Educater’s current content partners STAT Sheffield and NAHT Assessment Frameworks. Educater is now in a position to incorporate any school content into its STATonline assessment tracker.


Bunkabin launches new sleeper units for extra student space and comfort

Study desk

Bunkabin, the leading supplier of en-suite site sleepers and portable cabins, has launched its Bespoke Sleeper to offer even more space and comfort for students.


The Oldham-based company provides portable sleeper units to universities and colleges in need of additional student accommodation and has expanded its offering with the Bespoke Sleeper, which boasts more space and extra insulation. The Bespoke unit offers all the quality and comfort associated with regular, permanent buildings, and includes everything a student needs for a good night's rest and a quiet study environment.


Sparkling and speedy warewashing results for schools


It is vital for schools to have clean, hygienic plates, glasses, cutlery and utensils, so the right warewashing equipment is essential. Visitors to Stand M44 will be able to find out how Winterhalter’s new Connected Wash system can make school warewashing more efficient, reliable and controllable, as well as producing sparkling clean wash results time after time.


The Connected Wash system exploits the latest networking and digital technologies to allow Winterhalter warewashers to be networked - providing more continuity and efficiency in the school kitchen, or in multiple kitchens in a school cluster.


Brexit Means We Need A More Global Britain

founding storey

Over the past nine months there has been much speculation over Brexit, with many of us wondering what the consequences will be for education as well as our cultural and economic relationships. But, with article 50 finally triggered and our fates soon to be determined, perhaps the UK can begin to look at Brexit as an opportunity to reassess and develop a more global outlook.

No longer being part of a 27 strong group, we will be responsible for our own standing on the world stage. This is an ideal time for the UK to not only maintain, but indeed strengthen and enrich its  cultural and global market. 

Education authorities could face £17m fine for non-compliance with new GDPR


The EU Parliament has seen a lot of to-ing and fro-ing of the issue over the years, but they’ve finally set a date for implementing a strict zero-tolerance policy towards privacy and data protection.

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is set to become fully effective on 25th March 2018 , after which date any organisations that fail to comply with the GDPR will be charged with a fine of £17.2m (€20m) or 4% of their annual turnover – whichever is higher.

Technology brings learning to life in the classroom

ICT Awards

Schools should be ready to equip their pupils with a strong set of digital skills to succeed in the workplace, says Aisling Hagan, senior teacher and director of e-learning at St Mary’s Grammar School in Northern Ireland.

Today’s young people face the prospect of entering a more fast paced, leaner and more creative workplace made possible by the latest technology. To prepare pupils to thrive in a digitally evolving world, schools increasingly need to look at ways to embed technology right through the curriculum, which is what we have done here at St Mary’s.

Real-life applications

Pupils explore works of First World War writers on new battlefields tour


The First World War Centenary Battlefield Tours programme, designed to engage school students in active commemoration, has been extended to offer free literature themed tours to all secondary and middle schools in England. 


The literature tours are a new and additional element to the government funded programme which is already being run by the UCL Institute of Education (IOE) and school tour operator Equity. The tours give students tangible insight into the lives and experiences of those who fought the Great War, a genuine understanding of its historic importance and why it remains enormously relevant today, 100 years on.


5 Things To Consider When Choosing Your School Canopy

Dinning outdoors

Outdoor shelters and canopies are a great way to extend the space available to schools - from outdoor classrooms and dining areas to covered playgrounds - but how do you make sure you choose the right canopy or shelter for your school? Ask yourself the following five questions and you can’t go wrong.


What will the canopy be used for?

It’s important to consider when your canopy will be in use, whether it’s during the summer months or all-year-round.

Whichever option works for your school, it’s important to ask a supplier what safety standards their canopies adhere to and what safety features are built in, questions you might want to ask include:

• Is there 100% UV protection?

School-led leadership qualifications provider expands

A school-led leadership qualification provider is to expand in a move that will make it one of the largest professional development organisations of its kind in England.


Outstanding Leaders Partnership (OLP) was established in the north west in 2012 and has grown to 20 teaching school alliances, trusts and individual schools, working in partnership to deliver school leader development programmes across the region. It has worked with over 900 schools – including some of the region’s most challenging schools – since its launch.


The expansion will see two other school-led partnerships – Nottinghamshire based LEAD Academy Trust and West Hertfordshire Teaching Schools Partnership - becoming delivery partners under the OLP brand. 


Former headteacher turns poetry into hip hop to reach 
one million revising GCSE students

Tuitionkit Leon

A former headteacher with a goal of teaching one million young people has transformed GCSE English Literature revision, with the launch of a new set of ‘hip-hop poetry’ study videos.


Leon Hady is the founder of TuitionKit, the national e-learning solution that provides interactive video content to help GCSE and A Level students revise in Maths, English and Science. 


Ofsted confirms spectacular turnaround of west London college

Hammer Smiths Fulham

One of the largest further education colleges in England is celebrating what could be the most spectacular turnaround in the sector in recent years. 


Today, it was announced that Ealing Hammersmith and West London’s College has been awarded a good rating from Ofsted. This comes less than 18 months after the college was rated as inadequate and put into special monitoring measures by the inspectorate. 


The leadership team have reinvigorated the college and since 2014, there has been a 17.3% increase in students’ English and maths achievement and a 12% rise in achievement across all subjects.