On the 10th March 2015, the Respecting Children and Young People project will be holding an event to launch the culmination of our work, the Fair and Equal Education manifesto. This manifesto has been shaped by the dialogue and engagement of members of six special interest groups (SIGs) within BERA, representing many hundreds of British educational researchers. We have come together because we, like many other voices at the present time, are concerned. Continue reading Fair and Equal Education
Just before Christmas, one of my case study schools, in the provincial Northern city in my PhD study won a national school of the year award. Whilst it maintains a comprehensive intake, though as elsewhere this is less true after 16, its academic results are high, and the sixth form has a reputation for sending a significant numbers to the Russell Group and a handful to Oxbridge. As such it is similar in relative terms London’s ‘super state’ schools used by Gove, Cameron, the Blairs and others to avoid the political opprobrium of going private. The colonization of certain “comprehensive” schools in middle class neighbourhoods is common across the country. However, across the cities of Northern England, this strategy may be occurring more frequently with the post-crisis pressures on middle class incomes, entrenching the geographic divide around private schooling. Continue reading Geographies of class, place and education: Deepening North-South divisions in independent schooling
I have read with interest and concern the Twitter debate generated by my blog “A Classroom Story” which was created as a counter-story. The characters William and the class teacher were representations of typical experiences composed from different accounts which were reported by Black male student teachers during a small scale research project in 2013. Continue reading Response to “A Classroom Story” Jasmine Rhamie
I am writing in response to the thoughts expressed by both Diane Reay and Robert Loe on this blog. Diane recognised the problem of high stakes testing in schools, which, if given too much importance in schools, overlooks the wider roles of developing character and non-cognitive skills. Robert recognised humans as ‘society’s greatest resource’ and wrote about the importance of relational health in schools. I would like to add my thoughts to this issue by focussing on relationships in schools. Continue reading Leading Human Beings in Schools
Children, their World, their Education. The basic premise of the Cambridge Primary Review (CPR) was as clear in the title of its final report as in its choice of investigative themes and questions: education is meaningful only when educators understand and coherently respond to the nature and needs of children and the society and world in which they are growing up. Mastering the practical skills of teaching is a necessary but not sufficient condition, and as an educational rationale mantras like ‘effective teaching’ take us to the nearest 3Rs test but no further. Continue reading New evidence on childrens’ voices and rights. But does DfE get it?
As the flagship education policy under the current coalition government, the Free Schools initiative has attracted substantial political, academic and media interest. It is no surprise, therefore, that with a general election looming, people are interested in knowing what direction the policy might take next. Continue reading Free Schools: where next?
William dropped exhausted on his bed. He hadn’t realised how hard it would be to train as a primary teacher. After relaxing for an hour he carefully reviewed his teaching and marked children’s work. They had done very well and it was rewarding to note how well they had understood and progressed in maths. He thought about how he would move them on to the next concept and amended his planning in light of his marking and reflections. Continue reading Classroom Story