Key Quotes - Education

Key Quotes - Education

A world perspective in bite-size chunks
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Last update: Saturday 17th August
 
Students were offered 'bribes' of up to £1,000 for their university society if they attended a rally against the Coalition's spending cuts. Groups such as archaeologists and ballroom dancers were told they needed to send members to tomorrow's march in London to be eligible for extra funding. The demand - circulated by the Manchester University's Students' Union - was branded an unacceptable misuse of public money. It provoked a storm of protest across the campus before being withdrawn with a grovelling apology. But the move is likely to call into question the motivation of some of the 10,000 marchers who the National Union of Students claims will take part in tomorrow's rally. It will be the first time students have marched in London against funding cuts since a series of rallies in 2010.
EducationDaily Mail November 20 2012
 
Thousands of the brightest children in England are failing to achieve top grades at GCSE because of a growing trend towards entering pupils early. Sir Michael Wilshaw, Ofsted Chief Inspector, has warned that the education watchdog will be ‘critical’ of schools which use early entry for GCSE where they are not ‘absolutely confident’ that pupil’s will achieve their full potential. His message comes after Ofsted statistics showed an ‘explosion’ in early entries for Maths and English at GCSE over the past six years.
EducationThe Sentinel – 20th September 2012
 
GCSE’s are to be replaced by a new English Baccalaureate Certificate in secondary schools in England, in the most radical shake-up of examinations for 16-year-olds for a generation. The new qualifications to be known as EBaccs, will do away with modules which allow GCSE students to retake parts of their course, cut back heavily on coursework and return to the emphasis on a traditional end-of-year exam, to end what Education Secretary Michael Gove called ‘grade inflation and dumbing down.”
EducationThe Sentinel – 18th September 2012
 
Fear of debt and cost concerns could be deterring large numbers of young people from going to university, a survey has found. About 36% of students from single parent households say they are unlikely to go into higher education because their family could not afford the fees, compared with 13% of those in two-parent homes, an Ipsos Mori poll commissioned by education charity Sutton Trust has found. Older pupils are more likely to cite worries over getting into debt as a reason for saying they unlikely to continue into higher education.
EducationThe Sentinel – 28th September 2012
 
Private school leaders yesterday raised the prospect of boycotting any university found to be systematically discriminating against their pupils in admissions. They are incensed that more than half of top universities have set targets for admitting more state school pupils after pressure from the Government to widen their social mix. Headmasters are demanding universities such as Cambridge are banned from setting targets which classify students according to the type of school they attended. They are concerned the approach means state pupils from privileged backgrounds could be given an unfair advantage over well-qualified privately educated pupils from modest homes. Sources at the Headmasters' and Headmistresses' Conference (HMC), which represents 250 leading private schools, warn that fee-paying pupils could be advised to shun any university felt to be operating biased admissions. There is no evidence any universities are currently doing so. In 2003, private schools boycotted Bristol until they were assured pupils would be treated fairly.
EducationDaily Mail October 2nd 2012
 
Ofsted today warned schools that from this term, "good" is the minimum standard that will be expected of them. As children head back to class for the start of the school year, new rules come into force revamping the system. From today, the "satisfactory" rating used by inspectors will be scrapped, and replaced with "requires improvement".
Schools judged to require improvement at two consecutive inspections and which are still not providing a good education at the third, are likely to be placed in special measures.
EducationThe Sentinel, September 3, 2012
 
All pupils who sat GCSEs this summer were treated "unfairly", the Education Secretary has admitted, but he refused to order the exam regulator to re-mark papers. Michael Gove said this summer's controversy had shown why the examination needed to be replaced with a more rigorous qualification similar to O-Levels, and one in which only a "high flier" could obtain a top grade. The new exam, which could come into force as soon as 2014, would be sat by all pupils, unlike O-Levels, which were taken by only the most academically able while other pupils were awarded CSEs. Modular assessments, where pupils' work is graded throughout the year rather than in a written exam, could be phased out for English GCSEs by the summer. Mr Gove said all those who took GCSEs were let down by the system, and not just those who narrowly missed out on a passing C grade in English due to tougher marking. But he said it would be wrong to intervene by ordering Ofqual to re-mark papers.
EducationDaily Telegraph 04.09.2012
 
Vulnerable children could be placed at greater risk by government plans to cut red tape around child protection, experts have warned. An alliance of charities, pressure groups and lawyers is calling on ministers to drop proposals to streamline more than 700 pages of statutory guidance on safeguarding children into three documents totalling fewer than 70 pages. Under the plans, local authorities would no longer have to assess a child's needs within seven days of receiving a referral containing welfare concerns, nor produce a more detailed report within seven weeks. The Every Child in Need group says the current rules provide an essential minimum standard of care for young people who need help, and without them they would face differing treatment from councils throughout the country. The Department for Education said it is committed to protecting vulnerable children, and reducing bureaucracy will help staff carry out safeguarding work.
EducationDaily Telegraph 04.09.2012
 
A coalition of children's charities has accused the Government of making its consultation on blocking online pornography deliberately complicated. Ministers are asking parents and children's organisations for their views on whether to impose tougher controls to protect youngsters from seeing hardcore pornography on the internet. The consultation asks people if they would like to see an 'opt-in' system or a less stringent solution, known as 'active choice'. Under the first system, porn is automatically blocked on people's computers unless they 'opt in' to see it, while under the second it is only blocked if they apply to have such material filtered. John Carr, from the Children's Charities' Coalition on Internet Safety, said ministers wanted the less stringent solution, meaning they are doing all they can to prevent parents and charities from putting forward their view. He said the consultation, by the Department for Education, was much shorter than the usual length for government consultations - ten weeks instead of 12 - and has been timed for the summer to prevent people having their voices heard. He added that the web page set up for people to respond is confusing and complicated, deterring many from taking part. Instead of the usual situation, where people can type in their comments directly on the page, in this case they have to down-load a Word document and fill in a long list of questions, before re-uploading the document. They also have to go through a time-consuming security check.
EducationThe Daily Mail 03.09.2012
 
Britain's dumbed down exams system is 'patronising and cruel', David Cameron said yesterday. The Prime Minister said it was right to raise exam standards, even if that means that results sometimes go down. He added: 'The easy road on education is to cave in to the unions who want to keep inflating the GCSE and A-level grades and pretend that standards are rising each year. So this Government is being braver. In schools, there will be no more excuses for failure - no more soft exams and soft discipline. 'We saw that change in the exam results this year. When the grades went down a predictable cry went up: that we were hurting the prospects of these children. To that we must be very clear. What hurts them is dumbing down their education so their potential is never reached and no one wants to employ them.’
EducationThe Daily Mail 03.09.2012
 
More than 2,000 students face deportation from the country after the Government stripped a university of its right to admit foreigners. London Metropolitan University has had its Highly Trusted Status (HTS) for sponsoring international students revoked and will no longer be allowed to authorise visas. The move could mean more than 2,000 students being deported within 60 days unless they find another sponsor. Universities Minister David Willetts has announced the formation of a task force to help overseas students affected by the decision.
EducationThe Sentinel - August 31, 2012
 
Earlier this summer, Nick Clegg hailed a transformation in free early education a he announced a shake-up of the way it is delivered. The changes include a huge boost for hundreds of two-year-olds who will get access to free childcare earlier than originally billed. At the moment, all three and four year olds are eligible for 15 hours of free early education per week. Two-year-olds from the most disadvantaged backgrounds were due to start receiving free pre-school education from 2012, but the Deputy Prime Minister wants to see the programme rolling out early from this September.
EducationFamilies First – September/October 2012
 
Hundreds of pupils are being removed from school for 'sexual misconduct', prompting concerns over the influence of pornography. More pupils are being expelled for sexual misconduct than bullying, the Department for Education figures showed. Charities yesterday warned that easy access to online pornography was fuelling 'unhealthy' attitudes to sex among some youngsters. Jon Brown, of the NSPCC, said: 'the figures show a worrying trend of schools having to suspend or exclude a significant number of pupils for sexual misconduct. We are concerned that some young people are forming unhealthy attitudes to sex. 'We know from talking to them that there Is increasing pressure to engage in risky behaviour and access to hard core videos on the internet is now easier than ever. ‘There has been a "normalising" of risky sexual activity.’ Pupils in all schools were suspended 3,010 times in 2010/11 for sexual misconduct and 80 were expelled; 60 were thrown out for bullying.
EducationThe Daily Mail July 26 2012
 
A rising tide of violent indiscipline in primary schools was laid bare yesterday. Official figures revealed that 90 children are sent home every day for attacking teachers or classmates. And the worst deterioration in behaviour is being seen in the most affluent parts of the country. Teachers blamed parents for failing to equip children with the social skills they need to cope in the classroom. Last year primary schools expelled nearly 300 pupils aged 11 and under for violence and handed out almost 17,000 suspensions. This means that on any given school day in 2010/11, 90 pupils were ordered out of school for attacking a member of staff or fellow pupil. Primaries were forced to bar pupils more than 10,000 times for persistent disruption in lessons and 6,390 times for verbal abuse. Hundreds more pupils were sent home for other serious breaches of school rules such as bullying, racist abuse, sexual misconduct, theft, drugs or alcohol offences and damage to property. Figures show that the proportion of youngsters ordered out of school for breaking the rules rose last year in almost every primary age group. A breakdown issued by the Department for Education shows that while the number of secondary pupils being suspended or expelled is falling, there is a worsening picture at primary level - especially in the most affluent parts of the country.
EducationThe Daily Mail July 26 2012
 
Michael Cove's distribution of copies of the King James Bible to schools nationwide, which took place late May, has been supported by Richard Dawkins. Many have said the idea is insensitive to the fact schools are becoming increasingly multi-faith. The Department for Education says the Bibles impact on history and culture today makes it a worthy addition to a school library. Dawkins agreed.
EducationChristian Today Evangelicals Now July 2012
 
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