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About Schools Week

Schools Week

Schools Week is read widely by headteachers, governors, business managers and the education leaders of the future. Established in 2014, our weekly print newspaper is now read by around 22,000 education managers and sector stakeholders, and 1.4 million unique users visited our website in 2015-16. We have quickly become the “go-to” news source for reliable education journalism, with a formidable reputation for hard-hitting investigations, breaking news and expert analysis.

About FE Week

FE Week

FE Week is the premier news source for the further education, apprenticeships and skills sector, with a reputation for breaking news, investigations and expert analysis that is second to none. Our weekly newspaper is read by over 10,000 education managers and sector stakeholders and over 75,000 people access our website on a monthly basis. Trust is essential, and our readers know that FE Week provides an unrivalled platform for sharing accurate, timely information.

In the News

Examiner awards scheme launched to lure teachers amid growing demand

An awards scheme that will recognise “exceptional commitment” from exam markers is being set up by the Joint Council for Qualifications (JCQ) to entice more teachers to take on the job. The move comes off the back of a report by the headteachers’ associations, JCQ and other exam boards, which warned thousands more examiners are needed to meet extra demand from GCSE and A-level reforms. The report, due to be published on Monday, found that each summer 34,000 examiners set and mark 8 million qualifications for 2 million 15 to 19 years olds in the UK. It said that while the move from modular to linear general qualifications may reduce overall demand for examiners as resits and multiple entries decrease, there is increased demand for examiners during the summer period. Authors added that national challenges with teacher recruitment may have a knock-on effect on examiner recruitment, as well as heavy workloads which puts teachers off becoming examiners. As a result, 7,000 more examiners are needed by 2019 to cater for the growing demand, the report warned. JCQ’s proposed awards scheme is intended to act as an extra incentive for teachers to take on examiner roles. Individual awards will be given...

It’s official: Schools to employ apprentices, but BBC and Parliament let off

The government has confirmed today that schools will be included among public sector bodies expected to employ apprentices – although larger organisations such as the BBC and Houses of Parliament are handed exemptions. The move comes despite schools expressing concerns about the affordability of paying for new apprentices, as well as “practical difficulties” in employing them because many teaching roles require a degree. The government today confirmed that at least 2.3 per cent of the workforce in English public sector bodies with more than 250 employees will have to be apprentices. The policy is part of a government drive to create 3 million apprenticeships by 2020 – a Conservative party manifesto pledge. Ministers chose to include schools and multi-academy trusts in the rules, despite exempting larger public bodies including the BBC, Channel 4, the Post Office, and the Houses of Parliament. Malcolm Trobe (pictured above), interim general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, said it was unfair to exclude some commercial companies but include schools. He told Schools Week: “It is inappropriate that we have a national education service which has not been exempt in any way from this target, whereas a number of other organisations which...

Ofsted watch: Two grade crash to inadequate for independent training providers

Two of the three independent training provider full inspection reports published this week have resulted in a two grade crash to inadequate. And two other providers have lost their outstanding rating in another less-than-positive week for the FE and skills sector. Just one of the 11 full reports published between January 14 and 20, based on inspections carried out late 2016, resulted in a higher grade – while five stayed the same and five went down at least one grade. But after last week’s bad start, general FE colleges have had a breather as no inspection reports have been published this week. Ineffective safeguarding and poor achievement rates were among the issues that led to Bradford-based Bowling College plummeting from grade two to four in a report published today. Meanwhile, poor teaching, learning and assessment were among the concerns leading to Sheffield-based SYTG’s two grade tumble to inadequate in a report published January 19. City Lit, a community-based learning provider in central London, swapped its grade one – which it had held since 2011 – for a grade two overall in a report published January 19. And employer provider British Telecommunications also lost the grade one it had held since...

College forced to stop recruiting apprentices

A college hit with an ‘inadequate’ Ofsted rating won’t appeal against the resulting ban from running apprenticeships, but says it will continue recruiting learners right up to the last minute. The Skills Funding Agency started allowing bodies to apply to join the new register of apprenticeship training providers last October, but those with the lowest Ofsted rating for apprenticeships were banned from applying. This means that Epping Forest College, which was rated ‘inadequate’ across the board, including for its apprenticeships, in a report published on January 6, will be unable to run them from May. But unlike Bolton College, which appealed last autumn after receiving its own ‘inadequate’ rating for apprenticeships, EFC won’t be appealing. We are going to do whatever we can to address the inadequacies with apprenticeships identified The college’s recently appointed principal Saboohi Famili told FE Week: “We are not going to appeal. We are going to do whatever we can to address the inadequacies with apprenticeships identified, and aim to start running them again after we are next inspected – and the grade will hopefully improve.” Asked if the college planned to keep on recruiting new apprentices until the cut-off date on May 1, she confirmed:...