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?