Laura McInerney

  • Ignore social media, pupils can cope with hard GCSE exams

    What do drunk rats, teenage boys and an independent drugs company have in common? Despite sounding like key components from a song in the 1980s they are actually items mentioned in AQA’s biology GCSE paper taken earlier this week. Echoing youngsters across generations who walked out of exams and asked “what the heck was all

    17.00 May. 19th, 2016 | Opinion

  • 'Why a campaign group was wrong to complain about my school’s racial intake'

    Religious schools have been accused of racial segregation – but is the picture accurate? Headteacher Paul Halliewell says his school was unfairly targeted. In Science we teach pupils not to make an evaluation without evidence to back it up. During research, if you only choose to use the evidence that supports your original hypothesis and

    16.07 Jan. 6th, 2016 | Opinion

  • Books of the year 2015

    1 – The Gove Legacy By Mike Finn Easily the best book on education this year was also the most overlooked. Its high price (almost £40) and dull front cover are likely the reasons why, but they betray the romp that lies inside. Written by commentators from “within” the Gove era – including a super

    19.00 Dec. 20th, 2015 | Reviews

  • Blogs of the year 2015

    Harry Fletcher-Wood picks… My favourite blogger of the year isn’t really a blogger, more a compiler of a latter-day encyclopaedia, gradually sharing entries. Daisy Christodoulou, writing at, has probably already forgotten more about assessment than most of us will ever know. In considering key principles of teaching and learning, I find myself visiting her

    6.00 Dec. 18th, 2015 | Reviews

  • How We Learn: the surprising truth about when, where, why and how it happens

    It’s impossible not to notice the increasing volume of books, blogs and articles on how we learn and the implications for teaching and curriculum design. This book by New York journalist Benedict Carey, published last year, is engaging, well researched and has significant implications to how we should teach (lesson to lesson) and how we

    19.00 Oct. 25th, 2015 | Reviews

  • Andrew Old picks his top blogs of the week 23 October 2015

    Is there such a thing as a crap school? By @SurrealAnarchy Sometimes it is the most obviously true statements that are the most controversial. To say that some schools are terrible can lead one to be accused of attacking teachers or children. Here, Martin Robinson describes some schools he’s known where there is no excuse

    6.00 Oct. 23rd, 2015 | Reviews

  • The complicated 'truths' of the SAT resit debate

    The Conservatives will force year 7 pupils to resit their SAT exams if they don’t achieve a level 4 while at primary school. Is it a good idea? The answer isn’t as black and white as we may initially believe.   Things that are true – Children who don’t get a level 4 in English

    12.56 Apr. 8th, 2015 | Opinion

  • 11 Things You Might Have Missed In Ofsted's 'Most Able Students' Report

    Headlines today are focusing on Ofsted’s disappointment at schools over the progress of ‘most able’ students. Having a go at schools is an easy soundbite. It gets onto tv, it gives teachers a ‘kick’, it plays well to people who feel their child’s genius isn’t adequately recognised. But the soundbite misses out the 34 pages

    9.53 Mar. 4th, 2015 | Opinion

  • What is Tristram Hunt’s private school tax plan?

    Tristram Hunt declined to comment. Those words leapt out in a New Statesman article earlier this year describing how private and state schools could demolish walls between them. Andrew Adonis, Michael Gove, Anthony Seldon, even myself, all wrote articles. Tristram Hunt? He declined to comment. The shadow education secretary was rightly lampooned for his silence.

    7.30 Dec. 6th, 2014 | Opinion

  • Schools Week editorials

    Edition 36 editorial Harpenden Free School is changing its name to Harpenden Academy. As a paper that started life with the moniker Academies Week, we empathise. It’s not that free schools are bad. Or good. They are just schools, like any other. But the political associations of free schools with Michael Gove, free market zealotry,

    6.00 Nov. 28th, 2014 | Opinion

  • State boarding schools: What are they? How do they work?

    State boarding schools are an unusual hybrid. They sound a bit like private schools (they’re not), they sound as if they’re free (also wrong), and they sound like something we don’t have in England. But we do. In fact, we have 38 of them. Unfortunately, most people only understand schools as local places that children

    6.30 Nov. 24th, 2014 | Opinion