Guardian Unlimited: Education

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Latest education news, comment and analysis on schools, colleges, universities, further and higher education and teaching from the Guardian, the world's leading liberal voice
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Where did all the GCSE pupils go – and why has no one noticed?

Mar, 21/03/2017 - 08:15
Some secondary schools have ‘lost’ up to 46% of their pupils without causing any alarm to Ofsted inspectors

When Ofsted inspectors published a report on Hewens College in Hillingdon, west London, in January 2016, they gave it a clean bill of health. Leadership and management were impressive, teachers had high expectations of their charges and the education provided overall was adjudged “good”. Any school would be proud of such a report.

However, one striking fact was not mentioned. The year group that had taken GCSEs the previous summer, and on whom much of the school’s latest achievement data was based, was only just over half the size it had been when these pupils joined the school in 2010.

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Categorías: Educación, Universidade

'Hannah was petrified,' say parents of student who killed herself during rape inquiry

Mar, 21/03/2017 - 08:00

Exclusive: Amanda and Paul Stubbs give first interview after prosecutors drop charges against daughter’s fellow student

“You are altogether beautiful, my darling; there is no flaw in you,” reads the inscription on the grave of Hannah Stubbs. It sits only feet from the home she shared with her parents. Her bedroom window is just visible through the trees.

Up to this point, Amanda Stubbs has admirably held her poise, but at the grave – out of sight of her four remaining children – she breaks down, her tears flowing freely. This is the place where she can grieve openly for the premature and senseless loss of a precious daughter.

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Categorías: Educación, Universidade

Future schools: core subjects only, parents pay for the rest | Laura McInerney

Mar, 21/03/2017 - 08:00
It would perfectly suit Tory ideology for parents to pay for sport, music, extra reading … and for state schooling to be pared to the basics

Imagine a world where school as we know it – free to all, with a wide variety of subjects – has been stripped back to a basic entitlement. Each child gets only a few hours per day of teaching in the core subjects. If parents want extras, say sports or music lessons or more reading activities, those must be additionally purchased from the school, or from private companies.

It may sound like a dystopian future but many parents already supplement their child’s education and, with grammar schools about to return, there is the opportunity for a boom in private tutoring. An austerity government with weak opposition could see paring back education as a neat way to solve some of its woes.

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Categorías: Educación, Universidade

May v Sturgeon: Scottish education swept up in political war of words

Mar, 21/03/2017 - 07:45
Pupils in Scotland have fallen behind in science. Now the PM has attacked the country for its ‘neglect’ of schools. Is she right?

From James Watt’s steam engine to Dolly the sheep, Scotland is proud of its strong science tradition, so a recent fall in the international rankings of Scottish pupils in science is causing a degree of national soul-searching.

And as the political temperature rises, Scotland’s education performance is being used as ammunition against the SNP government. Theresa May accused Nicola Sturgeon of “neglect and mismanagement” of education when responding to the call for an independence referendum. The Scottish Conservative leader, Ruth Davidson, said at her party conference earlier this month that the SNP’s record on education was “an absolute disgrace” and “a mark of shame” and promised a “back to basics review” of Scotland’s Curriculum for Excellence (CfE). Questioned at Holyrood last week about May’s attack, Sturgeon said merely: “The education secretary and I work to raise standards and close the attainment gap in our schools every single day.”

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Categorías: Educación, Universidade

Universities condemn outbreak of violence at student rugby match

Lun, 20/03/2017 - 21:15

The varsity fixture between the universities of Sussex and Brighton was cancelled, with several students taken to hospital and one man arrested

Police are investigating after a brawl broke out at a rugby match between two universities. Bottles were thrown among the crowds in scenes condemned as “shocking and disgraceful” by the two institutions.

Numerous people were injured during the disturbances at the annual fixture between the universities of Sussex and Brighton in Falmer, East Sussex, on Sunday, which led to the match being cancelled.

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Categorías: Educación, Universidade

Schools funding formula change risks children’s futures | Letters

Lun, 20/03/2017 - 19:46

I chair the Barnsley comprehensive school featured by you last week (Education, 17 March) and for Deborah Orr (Opinion, 18 March) to say, in effect, that those of us fighting for fair funding in our schools are “wilfully damaging” education elsewhere is deeply offensive. We know that all schools need more money, but surely some need it more than others and the idea that with more money we can level-up is pure rhetorical fantasy.

Last week’s Education Policy Institute report on the implications of the national funding formula laid bare the fact that 882 schools are more than 10% above their proposed fair funding. To level all schools up to this would cost over £3bn – on top of the £3bn needed to cover the 8% rise in schools’ costs. Expecting £6bn from any government is disingenuous stalling, and playing games with our children’s futures. Equality is never quick or easy, and vested interests always start with the loudest voice and most power. If we are serious about social mobility, we must press on with the funding reforms and stop playing politics.
David O’Hara
Chair of governors, Penistone Grammar school

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Categorías: Educación, Universidade

Is studying law boring? And other student FAQs

Lun, 20/03/2017 - 17:05

From the workload to work prospects, current students and tutors answer the questions law applicants really care about

Law is statistically the hardest subject to get a first-class degree in, so if your reasons for applying are limited to TV crime dramas and pressure from well-meaning relatives, it’s probably time to do more homework.

“I came into the law thinking I wanted to be a barrister, fight for underdogs and fight injustice,” says Abigail Minor, a second-year student at the University of Warwick. “But that’s a very niche area and your chance of getting into that as a career is very slim. I soon realised that it’s very competitive. I don’t want to make rich people richer and I want to stay true to myself.”

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Categorías: Educación, Universidade

Chinese maths textbooks to be translated for UK schools

Lun, 20/03/2017 - 16:39

HarperCollins signs ‘historic’ deal with Shanghai publishers amid hopes it will boost British students’ performance

British students may soon study mathematics with Chinese textbooks after a “historic” deal between HarperCollins and a Shanghai publishing house in which books will be translated for use in UK schools.

China’s wealthy cities, including Shanghai and Beijing, produce some of the world’s top-performing maths pupils, while British students rank far behind their counterparts in Asia.

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Categorías: Educación, Universidade

Enfin! Female author in French school exams for first time since 1990s

Lun, 20/03/2017 - 15:31

Baccalauréat lists Madame de Lafayette’s La Princesse de Montpensier after protests about sexism in lycée system

A female author has been included in the list of compulsory study books for France’s prestigious literature baccalauréat for the first time since the modern-day exam was introduced more than 20 years ago.

The move follows petitions protesting about sexism and an “excess of testosterone” in the exam syllabus.

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Categorías: Educación, Universidade

Brexit-proof the UK economy with more R&D, say employers

Lun, 20/03/2017 - 08:01

New CBI campaign says economy risks being left behind unless UK research budget rises to 3% of GDP from 1.7%

Britain must Brexit-proof its economy by ramping up spending on research and development or risk being left behind in the global race to deliver game-changing innovations in areas such as space tourism and robotics, the country’s leading business group has said.

The CBI lobby group will launch a campaign on Monday to urge the government to adopt an ambitious new target for R&D spending of 3% of GDP, compared with the current level of 1.7%.

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Categorías: Educación, Universidade

The 100 best nonfiction books: No 59 – Culture and Anarchy by Matthew Arnold (1869)

Lun, 20/03/2017 - 06:45
Arnold caught the public mood with this high-minded but entertaining critique of Victorian society, posing questions about the art of civilised living that still perplex us today

In 1848, a year of European revolutions, Matthew Arnold, the eldest son of a celebrated Victorian headmaster, voiced fears about his society that still seem hauntingly prescient and topical. “I see a wave of more than American vulgarity, moral, intellectual, and social, preparing to break over us,” he wrote. Arnold was also a poet, critic and educationist of great distinction. In Dover Beach, his finest poem, he expressed similar anxieties in some famous lines:

“And we are here as on a darkling plain
Swept with confused alarms of struggle and flight,
Where ignorant armies clash by night.”

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Categorías: Educación, Universidade

Canadian wins $1m Global Teacher Prize for work with Inuit students

Dom, 19/03/2017 - 20:50

Maggie MacDonnell praised for ‘transforming her community’ in village of Salluit, which has a high rate of suicide

A Canadian who teaches at a school in a fly-in-only village in the Arctic has won a $1m (£800,000) Global Teacher Prize at a ceremony in Dubai.

Maggie MacDonnell, praised for “changing the lives of her students and transforming her community”, was among 10 finalists chosen from 20,000 nominations and applications from 179 countries.

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Categorías: Educación, Universidade

We must help poorer pupils, but not through selection | Nicky Morgan, Lucy Powell and Nick Clegg

Dom, 19/03/2017 - 01:05
More grammar schools are not the answer to improving social mobility and preparing Britain for the future

Politics is often defined by what people disagree on. However, some issues are above party politics and it’s time that tackling social mobility became one of them. As politicians from three different parties, we sparred across the despatch box but now we’re coming together to build a cross-party consensus, focused on looking at the evidence of what works, to tackle inequality in education and boost social mobility.

Successive governments have made progress in boosting attainment and tackling poor performance across the schools system, but with the attainment gap between disadvantaged children and their peers stubbornly persistent it is clear more needs to be done.

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Categorías: Educación, Universidade

The demons that haunt Theresa May's dreams – cartoon

Dom, 19/03/2017 - 01:05

Chris Riddell on the mounting pressures facing the prime minister

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Categorías: Educación, Universidade

Cross-party alliance takes on Theresa May over grammar schools

Sáb, 18/03/2017 - 23:00

Critics say selection won’t help social mobility crisis, as former Tory education secretary Nicky Morgan adds voice

Theresa May’s personal crusade to expand the number of grammar schools is in serious jeopardy today as senior Tory, Labour and Liberal Democrat MPs unite in an unprecedented cross-party campaign to kill off the prime minister’s flagship education reform.

In a highly unusual move, the Tory former education secretary Nicky Morgan joins forces with her previous Labour shadow Lucy Powell and the Liberal Democrat former deputy prime minister Nick Clegg to condemn the plans as damaging to social mobility, ideologically driven and divisive.

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Categorías: Educación, Universidade

'Girls relied on me for sanitary towels': teachers on child poverty in schools

Sáb, 18/03/2017 - 16:13

After news of low-income families struggling to afford sanitary protection, we asked teachers about other indicators of child poverty they encountered

Girls from low-income families across England are struggling to afford sanitary protection, the Guardian has been told.

In many cases teachers themselves are stepping in to help, buying supplies for students. We asked teachers whether there were other items they had to buy for children whose families could not afford essentials. Here is what they told us.

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Categorías: Educación, Universidade

Gillian Beer: ‘I’m a historical remnant from the great days of free education’

Sáb, 18/03/2017 - 12:00

The critic on her new Lewis Carroll book and going from poor village girl to professor

There are some successful literary careers that rest on mountains of books and others that don’t. Gillian Beer’s is one that doesn’t. It’s not that she hasn’t published, during more than half a century in academia; just that much of her writing has been essays, which have been collected into scholarly anthologies spanning the humanities and sciences.

So to describe her recently published study of Lewis Carroll’s thought as long-awaited is an understatement. A 2003 book of essays published in her honour referred excitedly to her forthcoming work on Carroll, while a 2004 Guardian interview declared the book imminent. When I draw this to her attention, she does a passing imitation of the White Rabbit: “Oh dear! I was hoping you wouldn’t notice that.”

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Categorías: Educación, Universidade

Secret Teacher: My school sees pupils as a funding formula – we're failing them

Sáb, 18/03/2017 - 08:30

We help students to cheat and ignore threatening behaviour, because keeping them in class brings in more money

A student in my class attempted to assault me recently, and would have succeeded if others hadn’t restrained them and thrown them out into the hall. We locked the classroom door and the student stood outside, screaming threats.

I made a formal complaint to my manager, as did those who had helped calm the situation. But it was decided they wouldn’t be expelled, because that would mean we were unable to receive full funding for them.

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Categorías: Educación, Universidade

Fighting ‘unfairness’ is no justification for this school funding disgrace | Deborah Orr

Sáb, 18/03/2017 - 08:00

The Conservatives’ ill-considered plans for changing the school funding formula gloss over the fact that all schools face a funding crisis

When the full glory of “the London effect” became majestically obvious, back in 2013, people fell over themselves to explain how it had been achieved. London schools, which in the 80s and 90s had declined to a point where it seemed impossible for them to decline any more, had become the best in the country – even the world – on any measure one cared to apply.

Related: Ministers can no longer ignore protests over the school funding crisis | Geoff Barton

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Categorías: Educación, Universidade

Government under fire for 'cash for cabs' school transport plan

Sáb, 18/03/2017 - 07:00

Chancellor’s plan to provide transport to selective schools for children on free school meals could cost up to £5,000 per pupil

New grammar school pupils could be ferried up to 15 miles by taxi to their schools, at a cost of up to £5,000 per pupil every year, despite cuts to last year’s general school transport budget for disabled and disadvantaged pupils.

The government has said it would invest £5m a year to fund transport for the poorest pupils to reach grammar schools so costs were not a barrier to a selective education for pupils who received free school meals or whose parents claimed maximum working tax credits.

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Categorías: Educación, Universidade