John Dickens

  • Pay rise costs take sheen off extra funding

    School funding will still be six per cent lower than it was in 2010 after cash swallowed up by rising salaries is taken into account, a new study has found. The government has promised to pump an extra £7.1 billion into the schools budget by 2023, which the Institute for Fiscal Studies has said “near

    0.33 Sep. 18th, 2020 | News

  • Government considering extra testing kits for schools

    The government is looking at increasing the number of testing kits issued to schools. In the commons today, Conservative MP Nick Fletcher urged the government to increase the number of test kits issued to schools, currently 10, up to 30 to “help pupils remain in the classroom”. Schools Week revealed last week how schools were

    13.18 Sep. 17th, 2020 | News

  • DfE seizes control of handling school covid cases after PHE local teams 'overwhelmed'

    The government has set up a national helpline for schools to report positive coronavirus cases following some being left in “limbo” waiting three days to get official health advice. A Schools Week investigation revealed yesterday how schools were waiting days for advice from local health protection teams on how to handle outbreaks. The Department for

    16.34 Sep. 16th, 2020 | News

  • Schools wait THREE DAYS for official PHE advice on how to respond to coronavirus cases

    Schools have waited over three days for official advice on how to deal with coronavirus cases – leaving heads in “limbo” as local public health teams are “overwhelmed”. An investigation by Schools Week has uncovered examples across the country of schools being failed by local Public Health England (PHE) teams. The government has promised schools

    21.12 Sep. 15th, 2020 | News

  • DfE to measure lockdown learning losses without extra tests

    The government will produce a baseline assessment detailing the scale of catch-up needed for pupils after coronavirus closures – without making children sit more tests. Renaissance Learning has won a government contract worth up to £143,000 to measure the full extent of lockdown learning losses. The firm will analyse data from schools already signed up

    12.59 Sep. 15th, 2020 | News

  • Exam board ‘proposed algorithm – then raised concerns about it’

    An exam board which revealed that it warned ministers of flaws with the ill-fated algorithm had actually proposed the approach adopted by the regulator in the first place. Cambridge Assessment, which runs exam board OCR, had originally submitted the direct centre performance (DCP) model that was chosen and then developed by Ofqual as its algorithm

    7.00 Sep. 13th, 2020 | News

  • Ofqual cancels £80k media recovery plan

    Ofqual has abandoned plans to spend £80,000 on media strategists to lead its “recovery plan” following the exams fiasco. The exams regulator had run a tender to recruit a “senior press office service to provide media advice and strategy”. The contract for the 15-week project, worth up to £80,000, was due to start this week.

    19.00 Sep. 11th, 2020 | News

  • Ofqual backs out of promise to publish exams communications

    The exams regulator has backed out of a promise to publish the communications and minutes of its meetings with government officials over the exams fiasco. During the education select committee last week, Ofqual chair Roger Taylor promised MPs the regulator would “publish all the communications and minutes” of meetings they had with Department for Education.

    23.09 Sep. 10th, 2020 | News

  • Academy scandal heads barred from running schools

    Two headteachers who broke academy finance rules have been barred from running schools. Liam Nolan, who was executive headteacher of the Perry Beeches Academy Trust, and Thomas Marshall, former head of Baverstock Academy, both based in Birmingham, have been banned by the government from running independent schools, including academies and free schools. The orders also

    15.54 Sep. 7th, 2020 | News

  • School leaders called on to help prevent unnecessary surge in coronavirus testing

    Headteachers have been urged to stop pupils and staff with a sore throat or headache from getting unnecessary coronavirus tests to prevent a surge in demand that could threaten the government’s testing capacity, health officials have warned. Demand for testing in Scotland saw a “huge increase” from people without coronavirus symptoms as schools went back

    12.37 Sep. 3rd, 2020 | News

  • Ofqual: ‘Wrong to assume’ students with deflated grades have been 'disadvantaged'

    It’s “wrong to assume” that pupils in schools who deflated teacher grades have “necessarily been disadvantaged”, an Ofqual official has claimed. The regulator is facing challenges from schools and one of its own advisory board members to offer an appeal route for schools that followed advice to mark down their own teacher grades. It is

    10.12 Sep. 3rd, 2020 | News