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Published on July 5, 2012, by

Schools Improvement Net – schools news and views for school leaders and everyone interested in schools and school improvement – sign up for our daily news briefing here

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Anger as children aged four are given just one chicken nugget as part of new free school meals scheme

Published on September 20, 2014, by

The Mail is reporting that a row has broken out over school dinners after it emerged reception pupils were being given just one chicken nugget for their lunch…

Infant pupils around the country are all entitled to a free hot meal every lunchtime under the government’s flagship scheme brought in this month.

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New London free school opens with just 17 pupils on £18m site

Published on September 20, 2014, by

The Independent is reporting that  one of the Government’s new free schools has opened up in premises bought for £18m with only 17 pupils…

Trinity Academy in Brixton, south London, has a planned admission number of 120 per year, and had 90 parents on its books earlier this summer ahead of the new school year.

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Council accused of acting unlawfully when removing head from school

Published on September 20, 2014, by

Kent Online is reporting that Kent County Council has been accused of unlawfully removing a head teacher from his post following a failed Ofsted inspection…

The authority suspended David Bray before consulting the chair of governors at St Francis School in Maidstone, it’s been revealed.

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‘Knocking’ private schools only makes them more exclusive, says preps chief

Published on September 20, 2014, by

The TES is reporting claims from a leading figure in the independent sector that the more politicians criticise private schools for being elitist, the worse the problem will become…

Constant “knocking” of the private sector for its exclusivity makes it harder to convince “ordinary people” that it will be suitable for their children, according to David Hanson, chief executive of the Independent Association of Prep Schools (IAPS).

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Religious education ‘too weak’ in Anglican primary schools

Published on September 20, 2014, by

The Telegraph is reporting research suggesting more than half of Church of England primary schools are delivering poor quality religious education lessons that give pupils little more than a “superficial” grounding in the subject…

A study by the Church’s education division found that under-11s were being fed a “narrow diet of Bible stories” rather than in-depth classes designed to boost their understanding of Christianity.

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More children making music, but are lessons too conventional?

Published on September 20, 2014, by

Writing in the Conversation, Professor Mark Banks says the urge to make new music is alive and well among young people in the UK, but not always using conventional instruments in the classroom or school orchestra…

A new survey of music education has found that 40% of children make music outside of school with friends and 20% have made music using a smartphone or tablet.

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Muslim students are at risk of alienation if Islamic history is ignored in schools

Published on September 20, 2014, by

The TES is reporting new research that suggests muslim students are at risk of alienation if Islamic history is ignored in schools…

Muslims are often left out of the school history curriculum, which can alienate students and increase the risk of radicalisation, new academic research suggests.

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Mother’s thyroid level ‘may predict child’s poor maths’

Published on September 20, 2014, by

The BBC is reporting a new study that suggests children born to mothers who have low levels of thyroid hormones during pregnancy tend to do worse in maths in early primary school…

Dutch researchers tracked 1,196 healthy children from birth to age five, having recorded their mothers’ thyroxine levels at 12 weeks of pregnancy.

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Report criticises education at Northern Ireland’s top special needs school

Published on September 20, 2014, by

The Belfast Telegraph is reporting that Northern Ireland’s best known special needs school has been heavily criticised by inspectors for “inadequate” levels of education…

For almost 60 years Fleming Fulton has been at the forefront of education provision for children with disabilities and complex educational needs.

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Humour is key to maintaining classroom discipline, study says

Published on September 20, 2014, by

Managing behaviour may be no joke for many teachers, but having a sense of humour about it can go a long way, research on primary school classrooms shows. This is from the TES…

The report on effective teaching, published today by Pearson, explores the attributes that help excellent teachers to thrive and identifies humour as a vital weapon in the battle for control of lessons.

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Girl aged 14 raped in school toilets after teachers’ plan to ‘use her as bait’ backfires

Published on September 20, 2014, by

The Mirror is reporting that a 14-year-old special needs pupil was raped in her school toilets after teachers set up a trap to catch an alleged sexual abuser by using her as ‘bait’ – but then forgot about her…

Staff at Sparkman Middle School, Alabama, were investigating complaints that a 16-year-old student with a long history of sexual and violent misconduct had been harassing several girls.

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Teacher who used her daughter’s fingerprints to hide conviction is banned from the classroom for life

Published on September 20, 2014, by

The Mail is reporting that a maths teacher who used her daughter’s fingerprints to try to conceal her criminal past has been banned from the classroom for life…

Samantha Burmis, 46, embarked on an elaborate plot to hide a mortgage fraud conviction – and resulting prison sentence – after she won an unfair dismissal claim against a school.

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School’s Hamburg trip cancelled after teachers abandoned pupils for a night of heavy drinking

Published on September 20, 2014, by

The Telegraph is reporting that a German school’s trip had to be abandoned after the teachers in charge got so drunk that police were called to restore order…

The five-day trip to Hamburg was supposed to be a highlight of the school year for the group of 15- and 16-year-olds from the small town of Bramsche in Lower Saxony.

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Video: Top engineer shows off his dance moves to help recruit move school students

Published on September 20, 2014, by

The Guardian is reporting that Sir John Armitt, the engineer behind London Olympic Games, has taken to dancefloor in a remake of the hit song Happy to prove to a new generation of school students that engineering is not all about mucky overalls…

…The man whose career has spanned projects ranging from the Sizewell B nuclear power station to running Network Rail is also, it seems, a secret hoofer with a range of smooth disco moves.

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Today’s poll: Does it matter if there are far more women than men teaching primary?

Published on September 20, 2014, by

There was a lot of comment yesterday following the article we published calling for more men to go into primary school teaching so that young children have role models of both sexes. Many supported the idea but others said it really doesn’t matter and is in itself sexist (see examples below).

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Ofsted: reduce emphasis on English and maths in primary inspections

Published on September 19, 2014, by

The TES is reporting that Ofsted is to review whether primary school inspections are focusing too narrowly on English and maths to the detriment of a broad and balanced curriculum…

Standards of literacy and numeracy at primary level are now “better than they ever have been” as a result of improvements made over the last decade, according to Mike Cladingbowl, the inspectorate’s national director for schools.

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Government plan to expand preschools to accept two-year-olds attacked as ‘nonsensical’

Published on September 19, 2014, by

The Independent is reporting that  the Government’s controversial plan for schools to expand to take two-year-olds in nurseries has been condemned as “nonsensical” after official statistics revealed the vast majority of schools do not plan to take part…

According to the statistics published by the Department for Education, only six per cent of primary school nursery classes currently offer funded two-year-old places – and of those that don’t, only 12 per cent plan to offer places in the future.

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