• Coronavirus: Heads struggle to keep up with DfE guidance updates

    School leaders have had to read almost 100 updates to government guidance during the coronavirus crisis – a quarter of them published during antisocial hours. Analysis by Schools Week found the government has published 29 guidance documents or announcements for schools about the pandemic since mid-February, and issued 94 coronavirus-related updates for the sector. The

    5.00 Jun. 5th, 2020 | News

  • DfE's SEND review must address 'significant failings', says Public Accounts Committee

    The government’s review of provision for pupils with special educational needs and disabilities must result in “concrete action” to address “significant failings”, an influential committee of MPs has said. An inquiry by the parliamentary public accounts committee found that the education, wellbeing and life-chances of pupils with SEND are being damaged by the government’s failure

    0.01 May. 6th, 2020 | News

  • Safeguarding fears over DfE's list of online resources

    The Department for Education has today released a list of free online resources to aid pupils’ learning as they work from home during the COVID-19 lockdown.  However education suppliers have criticised the “lack of tender process” for the list – adding they are not aware of any “checks on resilience, safeguarding, data protection or other

    12.03 Apr. 7th, 2020 | News

  • Coronavirus: Leadership unions say school closures 'likely' after DfE crunch talks

    The general secretaries of England’s two school leadership unions have said it is “likely that a number of schools will have to close”, following a meeting with ministers. Geoff Barton, the leader of ASCL and Paul Whiteman, who heads up the NAHT, said they had had a “very productive meeting” with education secretary Gavin Williamson

    18.25 Mar. 16th, 2020 | News

  • Reception baseline assessment: 8 key findings from the DfE's pilot report

    The Department for Education has published a report on its pilot of the new reception baseline assessment, which will be rolled out to all schools this September. The National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER) was tasked with carrying out the process, which consisted of a trial with members of the September 2018 intake, and then

    15.46 Feb. 26th, 2020 | News

  • DfE claims trial shows baseline IS accurate, and confirms September roll-out

    The government has confirmed its new reception baseline assessment will be rolled out as planned this September, despite a study finding half of teachers thought it had a negative impact on children. The announcement follows what the Department for Education called “successful” trials across the country, and means that key stage 1 SATs, currently taken

    11.20 Feb. 26th, 2020 | News

  • Revealed: DfE in £3m bailout of government-approved ICT supplier

    The Department for Education paid £3 million to stop a cash-strapped ICT supplier to schools collapsing after it entered administration. In August, Gaia Technologies entered administration amid “severe cashflow issues”. The Welsh firm was listed among the DfE’s approved ICT service suppliers and described itself as a “leading provider” with 500 education customers. However it

    5.00 Nov. 16th, 2019 | News

  • Fair Access Protocols: Council pleas for DfE to intervene up nearly 50%

    Pleas from councils for the education secretary to intervene over admission rows soared by nearly 50 per cent last year – indicating that more schools are refusing to take in vulnerable pupils. New figures reveal the number of appeals for the government to intervene after an academy has failed to accept a child who has

    5.00 Aug. 26th, 2019 | News

  • Meet the team: Your guide to the new DfE ministerial line-up

    The Department for Education’s new ministerial team is now complete. Boris Johnson has finished his reshuffle after becoming Conservative leader and prime minister. Here’s your handy guide to who’s who on the seventh floor of Sanctuary Buildings.   Gavin Williamson Education secretary The MP for South Staffordshire since 2010, Williamson previously served as Theresa May’s

    15.12 Jul. 30th, 2019 | News

  • Trust seeks legal advice after council claims parents are 'fearful' of 'tough love' approach

    An academy trust is seeking legal advice after an “extremely misinformed” letter from Dorset Council urged the education secretary to halt a conversion because parents are “fearful” of its “tough love” approach. In an extraordinary letter to Damian Hinds, Sarah Parker, the council’s executive director for children, flagged a host of concerns about the proposed

    18.14 Jun. 27th, 2019 | News

  • Ofsted downgrades hundreds more 'outstanding' schools

    Almost a third of previously ‘outstanding’ schools inspected since last September have dropped to ‘requires improvement’ or ‘inadequate’, Ofsted has revealed. Data covering the period from September to the end of March shows that just 16 per cent of ‘outstanding’ schools inspected during that time kept their top grade. Twenty-five per cent dropped to ‘requires

    11.07 Jun. 13th, 2019 | News