Politics

Revealed: The full details of Labour’s education ‘mission’

Leaked document reveals aim to hold schools to account for attainment in at least one creative or vocational subject

Leaked document reveals aim to hold schools to account for attainment in at least one creative or vocational subject

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Schools should be held to account for pupils’ attainment in at least one creative or vocational subject, Labour has said, in a document setting out its education “mission”.

The document, seen by Schools Week ahead of its official publication later today, sets out more details of the party’s planned curriculum and assessment review, which it said would look at accountability measures.

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer this morning said his party would “update the ‘progress 8′ performance measure, and we will use it to get children studying a creative arts subject, or sport, until they are 16”.

You can read the full mission document here.

The policies will cost £1 billion, funded by the private school tax. Here are the new announcements this week…

1. Reform starts with Progress 8

Labour has pledged to “update” the Progress 8 and Attainment 8 accountability measures to hold schools to account for performance in at least one creative or vocational subject.

“This can help schools to encourage a broad curriculum for young people and recognises the value of creativity in young people’s education,” says the document.

It will also review the other metrics to “ensure that these support and align with a reformed curriculum and assessment system”, but expects this wider review to “take time”.

2. Curriculum review ‘principles’ revealed

Labour’s “full, expert-led review of curriculum and assessment” will follow the following principles:

  • An excellent foundation in core subjects of reading, writing, and maths.
  • A broader curriculum, so that children do not miss out on subjects such as music, art, sport and drama.
  • A curriculum that ensures young people leave school ready for work and ready for life, building the knowledge, skills and attributes young people need to thrive. This includes embedding digital, oracy and life skills in their learning.
  • A curriculum that reflects the issues and diversities of our society, ensuring every child is represented.
  • An assessment system that captures the full strengths of every child and the breadth of curriculum, with the right balance of assessment methods while maintaining the important role of examinations.

3. Oracy ‘throughout school’ and primary cash

The document sets out how speaking skills – known as oracy – can “deepen children’s understanding, analytical skills and engagement leading to better classroom outcomes”.

Labour said its curriculum review will “explore how to weave oracy into lessons throughout school”.

The party will also “equip every school with funding to deliver evidence-based early language interventions” such as the Nuffield Early Language Intervention.

4. Ofsted ‘report cards’ will look at inclusion

Proposals to replace Ofsted grades with report cards, outlined earlier this year, will “reflect how well schools are supporting the attainment and inclusion of pupils eligible for free school meals and with special educational needs and disabilities”.

This will “ensure that everything possible is being done to break down the barriers to opportunity and close the attainment gap”.

Labour will also “work with Ofsted to bring multi-academy trusts into the remit of inspection”.

5. Pilot of single ‘children’s number’

The party warned information about children is “disconnected”, with parents providing information to one professional and then having to “repeat themselves over and over, as information is not shared with others”.

Labour said it will “improve coordination between education, social care and the wider services that support families by piloting the expansion of a children’s number like the NHS number that stays with children not just for their school career but for their whole childhoods”.

By joining-up services, Labour also hopes to improve SEND provision.

The party will also “work to improve the inclusivity and expertise in mainstream schools, alongside ensuring that special schools are able to support children with the most complex needs, breaking down barriers to education”.

6. ‘Strengthening’ the teaching profession

A series of policies aimed at boosting recruitment and retention were announced.

They include a £2,400 retention payment for teachers who complete the two-year early career framework and reintroduction of the requirement for all teachers to have or be working towards qualified status.

Labour has also pledged to “simplify” teacher incentive payments into “one payment scale incorporating different factors such as subject and geography”.

And the party has pledged to “revise delivery” of the early career framework.

The party’s “teacher training entitlement” will see it backfill roles “so teachers at every stage of their career can be released for training”.

7. School improvement teams

New regional school improvement teams, coordinated by civil servants and drawing on the expertise of local leaders, will encourage peer-to-peer support and share best practice.

You can read more about them here…

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