Expert Contributor

  • The Daily Mile is no magic bullet

    The low-cost, straightforward and high-profile Daily Mile initiative is drawing wide support, says Andy Daly-Smith, but there is limited evidence thus far for its effectiveness. Schools should focus on fundamental movement skills, fitness, positive behaviour and passion. The newly published second chapter of the Government’s childhood obesity plan argues that all schools should adopt an

    5.00 Jul. 15th, 2018 | Opinion

  • 5 things schools should know about early-years education

    Children get profound, long-lasting benefits from their earliest exposure to teaching, from academic and non-cognitive development to better health and careers later in life. Research also shows that their teachers’ professional development is key, says Alison Peacock Early years education is perhaps one of the most contentious areas of pedagogical practice. Of late it has

    5.00 Jul. 14th, 2018 | Opinion

  • Ofsted DOES care about the early years

    There is much more to Ofsted’s engagement with the early years sector than the chief inspector’s visits to individual providers, argues Gill Jones At Ofsted, we know it’s imperative that young children get off to a good start when they begin primary school. Once they’re behind, it’s very difficult for them to catch up later.

    16.53 Jul. 6th, 2018 | Opinion

  • The schools that are building democracy into their education

    This week has been declared the UK’s first-ever ‘National democracy week’ in an effort to get people more interested in politics. Here Fiona Carnie celebrates the schools that already get pupils, parents and teachers involved in the way things are run. One fundamental principle of democracy is that it allows people to participate in decisions

    15.00 Jul. 5th, 2018 | Opinion

  • It’s not true that academies care more about money than pupils

    Contrary to the claims of some researchers, academisation is not creating a market, and it is not putting finances ahead of pupil success, says Martyn Oliver Some things never change. Exams finished, the sun shining, and pupils, parents and teachers nervously wondering if the little voice in their head whispering “it’s coming home” is correct.

    12.00 Jul. 5th, 2018 | Opinion

  • Reclaiming the curriculum: Specialist and creative teaching in primary schools

    It is good to have a new book that seeks to “reclaim the curriculum”. However, the question has to be: does it do what it says on the tin? Well it doesn’t, actually. But what it does do is to showcase practice from a selection of primary schools that are making sure that their curriculum

    5.00 Jul. 8th, 2018 | Reviews

  • Unleashing great teaching: The secrets to the most effective teacher development, by David Weston and Bridget Clay

    I was drawn to the optimism of the title Unleashing Great Teaching. While acknowledging the multitude of challenges schools face in improving their professional development, the tone of the book is hopeful. The premise is that, with access to the right resources, expertise and school leadership, the profession has bags of potential to move itself

    5.00 Jun. 29th, 2018 | Reviews

  • How to manage a mobile phone ban in schools

    Collecting pupils’ phones isn’t an invasion of privacy – it’s a sensible way to run a school, explains Peter Lee. Banning mobile phones isn’t as rare or shocking as some seem to think it is. In fact, every school I’ve worked in has banned mobile phones to some extent. Yet after the culture secretary Matt

    5.00 Jun. 30th, 2018 | Opinion

  • The early-learning goals aren't there yet!

    The review of early-years assessment has morphed into a review of the curriculum by the back door, argues Beatrice Merrick Following apprehensive rumblings on social media about the review of the early-learning goals, it’s no surprise that the DfE orchestrated a chorus of positive comment to greet the minister’s announcement of the draft revisions. Headteacher

    5.00 Jul. 1st, 2018 | Opinion

  • Booze and backroom deals are under the accounting spotlight

    The ESFA’s annual academies accounts direction document is usually fairly dry, but this year there are few more important things for trusts to look out for, writes Phillip Reynolds The Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) have released the academies accounts direction (AAD) 2017 to 2018 – a nattily named document that offers guidance on

    5.00 Jun. 25th, 2018 | Opinion

  • No, teachers aren't overpaid - despite what some think-tanks may claim

    Last week, the Taxpayers’ Alliance, a right-wing think-tank, tried to claim that teachers are paid too much, flying in the face of all the evidence. Here, NFER’s Jack Worth debunks a few of the worst points in its research The Taxpayers’ Alliance (TPA) report on Schools Spending last week was a baffling and extraordinarily narrow

    14.46 Jun. 22nd, 2018 | Opinion