Author: Mark R

Key findings from Ofsted’s Annual Report

Each year Ofsted publishes a report – a ‘state of the nation’ summary about education in the country. The inspectorate’s annual report is a useful barometer that shows what Ofsted is thinking and feeling. It’s often a strong indicator about what schools need to be mindful of if they face an inspection in the coming months. The key findings from the most recent annual report echo some concerns that have already been raised by others in education. Ofsted warns that the leadership capacity that the profession has to bring about school improvement is wearing thin. Indeed, it is in...

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How to boost teacher recruitment and retention

Not to put too fine a point on it, at present we are failing dismally both to recruit the number of teachers needed or to retain them for any decent length of time. This constitutes an awful waste of talent – and the consequences for education in this country are massive. Recruitment and retention issues prevent schools from delivering the quality of education that they want to be able to deliver and that children deserve. What’s more, if a solution isn’t found to this crisis soon then the long-term consequences could be catastrophic. Population forecasts show that the number...

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The future of music education in schools

A recent survey conducted by Sussex University has painted a bleak picture of the place of Music in the school curriculum. It found that the number of schools offering Music A-level has dropped by 15% in the last two years. The situation for Music Technology A-level looks even worse, with a 32% drop over the same period. There has also been a 10% fall in the number of students taking a GCSE Music qualification since 2016. Fewer schools are offering Music or Music Technology as an option at GCSE. Indeed, of the schools that participated in the survey, 18%...

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More win-win New Year’s resolutions for teachers

When it comes to New Year’s resolutions for teachers, the focus is often on major changes that will bring about a more positive work-life balance. However, sometimes success is best achieved by making a series of small changes. Try these easy-win/win-win ideas for size. Make time work for you Working smarter, not harder is a mantra that is often heard a lot. A complaint that teachers make a lot is that there is never enough time and not enough hours in the day to do everything you need (or would like) to do. Therefore, making best use of your...

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Why teaching is still the best job in the world

Teaching has become a battered and embittered profession in recent years. We are now expected to work for longer into our 60s, pay more into our pensions (and receive less back in retirement). Pay has been frozen – in real terms, cut – for years. The workload issue is getting worse rather than better and we still have to contend with endless reform. That’s not all, there’s also the issue of funding cuts, worsening behaviour, and a deepening recruitment and retention crisis. Oh, and the general feeling that teachers seem to get blamed for all of society’s problems and...

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