• Michael Merrick, Deputy head, St Cuthbert's Catholic Community School

    Eight years ago, Michael Merrick and his wife moved from St Andrews, where he was partway through a PhD and the family were eating “beans on toast” every night, to Carlisle, where he took up a teaching job in a local Catholic secondary school. They’ve lived in the town ever since, and he’s now deputy

    5.00 Jul. 17th, 2018 | Features

  • A solid primary curriculum is essential for GCSE success - but what does that look like?

    The expanded GCSEs may seem tough, but once pupils have been through the new primary curriculum, they will be much more accessible, writes Tim Oates We have new, demanding GCSEs at 16. Combined with all the other stresses in the system, it’s clear that our schools are feeling the pressure. However, I’m confident that, supported

    5.00 Dec. 11th, 2017 | Opinion

  • Ofsted is right about the knowledge-rich curriculum

    The inspectorate doesn’t always get things right, says Mark Lehain, but its latest review is important Ofsted gets a lot of hate from teachers. It’s just so easy to blame it, and wish it wasn’t there, especially when school leaders cry “it’s what Ofsted wants” when introducing a new initiative. (Spoiler alert: it isn’t.) While I

    17.08 Oct. 11th, 2017 | Opinion

  • Most teachers and parents fear EBacc could narrow curriculum

    More than two thirds of respondents to the DfE’s consultation on the English Baccalaureate are worried that schools will be unable to maintain a broad and balanced curriculum as the number of pupils taking it increases. The results of the Department for Education’s consultation on ‘Implementing the English Baccalaureate’, released today, show that 71 per cent

    15.56 Jul. 19th, 2017 | News

  • How schools can develop a strong curriculum

    Ofsted recently announced it will introduce a new focus on how schools plan their curriculum. We look at what the watchdog has said so far, how inspectors have been involved in curriculum in the past, and ask some experts: how can schools make sure they’re building a strong curriculum? Ofsted’s delegation to the recent Festival

    5.00 Jul. 18th, 2017 | Feature

  • School leaders aren't to blame for 'gaming' the system

    By using the term ‘gaming’ to describe the practice of schools trying to improve their metrics, we are missing the real problem, which is the high-stakes accountability culture itself, says Brian Lightman To coin a phrase from ‘Yes Minister’, Amanda Spielman’s announcement of an Ofsted investigation into the curriculum is a ‘brave’ decision, which I welcome. 

    5.00 Mar. 16th, 2017 | Opinion

  • Minister to 'accelerate' proposals for changes to sex education

    Ministers have suggested that sex and relationships education could be made statutory in schools through upcoming legislation due early next year. Edward Timpson, the children’s minister, told MPs yesterday that officials would be ordered to “accelerate” work on proposals for changing sex education so they can be circulated in the near future. I will ask officials to

    10.25 Dec. 6th, 2016 | News

  • Promote British values and register home-schooled pupils, Casey review recommends

    A landmark report which was supposed to provide a ‘major review’ of the impact of migration on schools has made just three recommendations relating to education. The Casey review into opportunity and integration has demanded more weight be attached to teaching British values, laws and history in schools, and recommended compulsory registration of pupils outside mainstream education.

    10.17 Dec. 5th, 2016 | News

  • Justine Greening told by five select committees that demand for compulsory sex and relationships education is now 'deafening'

    Five parliamentary select committees have written to Justine Greening to say the demand for compulsory sex and relationships education (SRE), and personal, social, health and economic education (PSHE) in all schools is now “deafening”. In a public letter, the chairs of five committees – education; women and equalities; home affairs; health; and business, energy and

    11.08 Nov. 30th, 2016 | News