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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

‘Cautious’ teachers need social media support from schools

A lack of support from schools is making teachers “cautious” about blogging and using social media, an academic has warned. Dr Helen Woodley told the annual conference of the Chartered College of Teaching today that curriculum changes and increasingly “hierarchical” school structures undermine the voice of teachers, prompting some to turn to platforms like Twitter and blogs to share their concerns. According to Woodley, a special educational needs coordinator and researcher, blogging and tweeting by teachers has many benefits. “No teacher who is on twitter can escape conversations about Ofsted myths, pupil discipline, marking,” said Woodley. “We’ve all seen that. And teachers who are actively involved in sharing their voice in such forums share knowledge, skills and stories in ways we just couldn’t have done as a profession before.” But there is “often a lack of professional support by schools in helping teachers use social media and blogs”. This means teachers often “use them with caution”, and worry the benefits of such platforms are outweighed by the risks of “criticism and public shaming”. When using the internet to share grievances and anecdotes, teachers also face “questions of ethics and anonymity”, with the publication of certain sensitive information prohibited by teachers’ professional...

Schools urged to ignore ‘dangerous’ gender guidance

Schools are being urged to ignore “dangerous” new guidance on pupils’ gender from a pressure group. Transgender Trend, an organisation set up by parents who “question the trans narrative”, has this week published what it calls a “schools resource pack”, offering advice to teachers and school leaders about how to support pupils dealing with gender issues. The group believes an increase in the number of children worried about their gender is the result of pupils being taught about gender identity, and blames internet use and “social contagion” for “glamorising medical transition” and causing “rapid-onset gender dysphoria” in children. The idea that listening to young people and taking steps to make them feel included might encourage them to be trans is quite simply a myth Its guidance urges schools to abandon what it sees as “special rules” for transgender pupils and to ignore existing advice, which it claims is biased in favour of transgender people. But the LGBT charity Stonewall, which advises hundreds of English schools, said the guidance is “packed with factually inaccurate content” and warned schools they “must have nothing to do with this deeply damaging publication”. Hannah Kibirige, Stonewall’s director of education and youth, said the document not...

Ofsted watch: ITP goes straight in with a ‘good’

An independent training provider scored a grade two on its first ever inspection, in a week otherwise characterised by a lack of change – as all other providers inspected have held onto their previous grades. Midlands-based Train Together was rated ‘good’ across the board in a report published February 16 and based on an inspection carried out in late January. “Highly valued” staff at the provider – which mainly delivers diploma programmes for adults in teaching support but has recently begin delivering apprenticeships – were “well qualified” with “highly relevant experience” and “high expectations of learners”. “Strong” relationships and links to local employers and communities were found to bring “positive benefits to businesses and learners”. “Adult learners develop good, relevant skills and knowledge as a result of their training”, the report said – although it noted that a “minority of trainers” did not support learners to “improve their English, mathematics and ICT skills beyond their starting point”. Sir George Monoux College held onto its ‘requires improvement’ rating, in a report published February 13 and based on an inspection carried out in early January. The sixth-form college received grade threes in all headline fields except leadership and management – which was...

Strike dates announced for colleges locked in pay dispute

College staff will go on strike over pay and conditions on the last day of February, with some adding March 1.  Notices have been issued to colleges in Sandwell and across London, informing them of the dates for a two-day strike over pay. “They are going to be on strike on February 28 and March 1,” a spokesperson for the University and Colleges Union said today, which applies to “all the affected London Colleges and Sandwell”. Sunderland College has also been issued notice for one day’s action on February 28, and talks for Sussex Coast College Hastings “are continuing”. It follows Monday’s announcement that staff at more than a dozen colleges had voted overwhelmingly to strike. “More strike dates will be announced if things cannot be resolved,” the union spokesperson added. “When they are will depend on how the individual disputes are progressing.” The colleges involved and how staff voted is set out in the table below: The dispute follows what another spokesperson described as “a disappointing” pay offer of one per cent, made last September by the Association of Colleges, which represents the colleges on pay. The National Joint Forum, made up of the unions representing college staff, had...