Saturday, 8 February 2014

Weekly Update 8/2/14

On Monday Michael Gove gave a speech in which he said his ambition for the school system is that when parents: "visit a school in England, standards are so high all round that they should not be able to tell whether it’s in the state sector or a fee-paying independent."

One wonders if he'd read the previous week's New Statesman in which David and George Kynaston had a fascinating history of Labour's reticence to engage with the private school dilemma. This week's edition had a follow-up with five commentators, including Andrew Adonis and Laura Mcinerney, giving their views on what to do about the private/state divide.

Gove also said he wanted to see a longer school day - and hinted at funding. Russell Hobby of NAHT wondered whether a longer day might not lead to better working patterns for teachers (Katie Ashford highlighted the problems caused by the current working patterns in this blog). And Jonn Elledge asked where the money was going to come from.

In exciting news for education geeks everywhere the Education Endowment Foundation released its first batch of Randomised Control Trials (including one showing summer schools having no effect on maths performance). And the NFER put out a paper looking at how we can get evidence like this to classrooms.

Other Highlights

A superb blog by Daisy Christodoulou on the problems of using data without a theory

David Thomas on how his school supports innovation

Tom Bennett takes apart five myths about behaviour

Martin Robinson's 51 year lesson plan

Some helpful FAQ on the new primary curriculum from Michael Tidd

Tom Sherrington on differentiation

Mary Myatt lists some features of an outstanding lesson

Lucy Crehan's five lessons on professional development from New Zealand.

Stephen Tall on the best and worst LAs for pupils on free school meals

A potentially very important bit of PISA data analysis from Cambridge Assessment which they say undermines the OECD's claim that the best education systems promote autonomy.

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