Traditional school rugby could become a thing of the past under plans put forward by health experts to ban tackling in the children’s form of the game. Fears that children are being put at risk of potentially fatal head and spinal injuries have prompted more than 70 doctors, health and sports experts to call on the Government to remove all harmful forms of contact from school rugby. The concerns are raised in a letter sent to ministers, chief medical officers and children’s commissioners published on 2 March. The signatories suggest that schoolchildren should be restricted to non-contact forms of the game such as touch rugby,Read More →

Children have learned which secondary school they will attend in the autumn, with tens of thousands likely to miss out on clinching a place at their first choice institution. A rising population which has affected primary schools is now impacted secondary schools, as children move on. The Local Government Association has responded by urging the Government to give councils more powers to deal with the spike in demand, warning that children could be left without a place at school. The body wants local authorities to once again be able to open new secondary schools, as well as order non-council-run academies to expand. The Government has said thatRead More →

Pupils in most secondary schools are being taught by staff not trained in the subject they are teaching, according to a new report. A survey of 885 schools by the Association of School and College Leaders, which represents secondary school heads, reveals 73 per cent  were having to put teachers not trained in the subject they were teaching in front of classes. In addition, 84 per cent said that teacher shortages were having a detrimental effect on the education they were providing. The subject areas worst hit by what has been described by ASCL president Allan Foulds as a “national crisis” are maths (where 78Read More →

Artificial intelligence should be used to provide children with one-to-one tutoring to improve their learning and monitor their well-being, academics have argued. One-to-one tutoring has long been thought the most-effective approach to teaching but would be too expensive to provide for all students. However, in a paper, academics from University College London’s Knowledge Lab argue that AI systems could simulate human one-to-one tutoring by delivering learning activities tailored to a student’s needs and providing targeted and timely feedback, all without an individual teacher present. Instead of being examined in traditional ways, children could be assessed in a more complete manner by collecting data about theirRead More →

One of Cambridge University’s oldest colleges has launched a scheme to encourage sixth-formers from state schools to apply to study medicine by letting them experience undergraduate life. The project was the brainchild of two medical students at Gonville and Caius College who were concerned at the difficulties facing state school pupils who might find it harder to break into the profession. They wanted to give practical advice and show them that Cambridge students were “not all posh boys in red trousers”. Medicine is highly competitive and requires medical work experience. Courses often end up dominated by students who attended private schools or whose parents orRead More →

It takes grit and determination to run a business, not a degree from Oxford University or the London School of Economics. Emolument.com, the crowdsourced pay-data website, analysed data from 26,000 former students to find the universities with the highest ratio of graduates to chief executives, chief technology officers, or partners. The company found that the bigger and older UK universities don’t produce as many business leaders as most people would think. Emolument found that “alumni from Sheffield, Brunel or Leicester University are less likely to be wooed by big banks or consultancies than their Oxbridge counterparts,” the company said. “And therefore more eager launch theirRead More →

Schools are in the grip of a “national crisis” over teacher recruitment, a headteachers’ leader will tell the Secretary of State for Education Nicky Morgan this week. Allan Foulds, the president of the Association of School and College Leaders – which represents secondary headteachers and college leaders – will warn the shortage of recruits is so severe it is jeopardising the Government’s drive to improve standards in schools. In his address to his association’s annual conference on Friday Mr Foulds will draw attention to the shortage of recruits, the exodus of teachers from the profession, and the public spending squeeze which is making it difficultRead More →

Struggling academies and free schools are to face a crackdown amid concerns about the quality of some chains, England’s new schools tsar has revealed. Sir David Carter, who was appointed National Schools Commissioner in December, used his first interview in the job to set out his plans to identify the 100 weakest academies and introduce a new hierarchical system for academy chains which would only allow the best to expand. Sir David announced his plans in the week that the government’s Education and Adoption Bill completed its passage through Parliament, paving the way for many more struggling schools to be turned into academies. Controversial measuresRead More →

Children who attend private schools benefit from the equivalent of two years’ extra education by the time they are 16, research suggests. Academics from Durham University analysed differences in attainment between state and private school pupils, taking their prior attainment, family background and gender into account. Private pupils were ahead of their state school counterparts at ages four, eight, 10 and 16, the study found. The research, commissioned by the Independent Schools Council, found that private schooling boosts teenagers’ GCSEs by almost two-thirds of a grade per subject. The biggest differences at GCSE were found in French, history and geography. The smallest gaps were inRead More →

Teenagers will be offered the opportunity to train to work in the RAF at a pioneering college to be opened in September. The Air and Defence Career College in Lincoln will be the first of its kind – at first offering 16 to 18-years the chance to train for a range of jobs with the RAF and the opportunity to use its facilities at its nearby air force base in Coningsby. The college will expand to take in 14-year-olds from September 2017 and – if successful – will be the forerunner of several similar initiatives between colleges and the RAF throughout the country. It willRead More →