Laura McInerney

  • How can schools reduce teacher sickness?

    Hands up if you were ill over Christmas and New Year? If you stayed healthy, then well done you. About half of teachers get sick during the holidays, according to our Teacher Tapp survey data, so be aware it might get you next time! Why are teachers so prone to Christmas illness? In part, it

    5.00 Jan. 13th, 2019 | Opinion

  • How common is burnout in the teaching profession?

    The title of Graham Greene’s 1960 novel A Burnt-Out Case refers to an unusual medical condition: lepers who have lost all physical sensitivity to pain, so continually mutilate themselves. But the point of the novel is that the protagonist suffers the psychological equivalent of that disease. He has been ground down by his life and

    5.00 Oct. 22nd, 2018 | Opinion

  • What if it's behaviour, not workload, that makes teachers leave?

    Everyone knows the statistic: one in three teachers leaves in their first five years on the job. But what if it isn’t stress, or workload, or pay, that’s the issue? What if it’s pupil behaviour? Over the past year, as I’ve watched the daily replies of 2,500 teachers to the Teacher Tapp surveys, it has

    5.00 Sep. 24th, 2018 | Opinion

  • GCSE Results 2018: The 7 most interesting things we have learned

    GCSE results are out and it is a complicated set of results. From a Schools Week perspective, the most useful data for our readers is the England 16-year-olds data. Wales and Northern Ireland run their GCSEs differently to England, so UK-wide data isn’t useful. While the England all-ages data includes 17-year-old resits which also makes

    9.30 Aug. 23rd, 2018 | Exam results, News

  • Politicians, like pupils, need high expectations

    Schools are the most hopeful places in the world. Over the past week I hope you’ve had a chance to see at least one prize evening, or school play, or end-of-year assembly, or any of the other celebrations that reflect the joy of children making their way into the world, and the hard work of

    7.00 Jul. 20th, 2018 | Opinion

  • Can Damian Hinds do the maths on teacher pay?

    Over the past few weeks, the education secretary Damian Hinds has been trying to solve a complicated maths problem. He’s likely to come under public pressure from the independent School Teachers’ Review Body, which is expected to recommend a substantial pay rise of about 3 per cent. If he refuses, Hinds will face an autumn

    5.00 Jul. 13th, 2018 | Opinion

  • Ofsted requires improvement – but how do we get there?

    Ofsted’s name is mud this week. Amanda Spielman’s speech at last week’s Festival of Education went down like a lead balloon after she announced that grades for overall school effectiveness are “not effort grades”. Then she suggested that schools in white working class areas get lower grades partly because local families may not have the

    5.00 Jun. 29th, 2018 | Opinion

  • Graduate recruiters are clamouring for more talented women – and schools should be afraid

    Gender pay rules are making corporations jittery, and rightly so. As Schools Week recently revealed, academy trusts usually have way more low-paid women than high-paid ones, which causes an imbalance in average pay. Reputationally speaking, this is bad for academy trusts. But for banks, retailers and large consulting firms, the damage is even greater because

    14.30 Jun. 26th, 2018 | Opinion

  • Forget the 11-plus. Is a world without selection at 18 possible?

    In a warm marquee tent on Wednesday, I was one of four people debating a motion: “Academic selection is wrong at 11, and it is still wrong at 18.” Having spent the past two years debating the considerable evidence against grammar schools, my arguments on the first part of the debate were sound. But I’ve

    17.42 Jun. 15th, 2018 | Opinion

  • Teachers are the best careers advisors

    When did you first decide an academic school subject wasn’t for you? Perhaps it was the day everyone laughed at your French accent? Or when the English teacher made you read Catcher in the rye? (You have my sympathy – that boy needs to get over himself). Mine was in during a physics lesson on

    5.00 May. 11th, 2018 | Opinion

  • How can we improve outcomes for excluded pupils?

    Fifteen years ago I met a vicar in a bar in Oxford who had spent 20 years working in prisons with violent male offenders. He told me that the youngest ones only had two shots at turning their lives around. “Either they find Jesus, or their girlfriend gets pregnant and they suddenly get the preciousness

    5.00 May. 4th, 2018 | Opinion