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Home-school register is welcomed by Portsmouth education boss

THE education boss in Portsmouth said he would welcome a register for home-schooled children.
dave king's insight:
Little news story from a local paper. Raises a much bigger issue - is the home school register to safeguard children or to reinforce state control? See also Ofsted's recent work on "illegal schools" in other parts of the country. As the Jesuits used to quote "Give me the child until he is seven, and I will give you the man". Illich might well have issues with such an intrusion, but isn't education about social and political control? 
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'Stigma attached to vocational qualifications is unjust' - Telegraph

'Stigma attached to vocational qualifications is unjust' - Telegraph | UK Education | Scoop.it
In classrooms up and down the country we are still peddling the notion that a degree is the only passport to success. This is simply not the case, says David Harbourne
dave king's insight:

The current government's shift toward the promotion of vocational qualifications may be seen in a number of ways. Functionalists may see this as a reinforcement of the necessary teaching of work skills and disciplines in the school system, as Durkheim identified. New Right theorists may emphasise that it meets the needs of particular groups of educational consumers, responding to demands of pupils and employers. Marxists may see it as a means of differentiating between social classes through different qualification routes as Willis, or the production of a surplus of necessary skills to reduce wage rates as with Bowles and Gintis. Following the aspiration of the last government for a radical increase in university admissions and the extension of university education to groups who have not experienced it before through initiatives such as Aim Higher, it could be seen as an attempt to redress the balance with academic education, or even to simply roll back the initiative and reduce the cost of such expensive education.

All of this assumes that vocational education does in fact provide a useful grounding for the world of work. Current proposals to introduce 50% exam element to BTEC qualifications in the near future may be a quest for greater rigour - or a shift away from a skills based approach to assessment.

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The problem with one of our assumptions about the poor

In the late 1960s, Walter Mischel, a researcher at Stanford University, invited several hundred children to participate in a game in which they were given a choice: They could eat one sweet right away, or wait and have two a little later.
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Interesting psychological approach to test the concept of deferred gratification among the children of the poor with some results that a Hyman or Sugarman might not welcome. Potential evaluation point here.
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Should employers ask graduates where they went to school?

Should employers ask graduates where they went to school? | UK Education | Scoop.it
dave king's insight:
An interesting article on the impact of social and cultural capital on employment opportunities. Excellent interactive quiz at the end of the article which demonstrates the problem created for the idea of meritocracy by the continuing power of the private school lobby.
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‘He ran at me with an axe’: teachers on facing violence in schools

‘He ran at me with an axe’: teachers on facing violence in schools | UK Education | Scoop.it
Pupil attacks in classrooms are on the rise, leaving many teachers fearing for their safety. What’s behind it, and what can schools do?
dave king's insight:
Students are seen as passive objects by several structuralist perspectives but some interesting statistics here. From a teacher survey from ATL "...four out of 10 teachers had been physically assaulted by children over the previous year. More than three quarters said they had been pushed or shoved, around half were kicked or had had an “object” such as a piece of furniture thrown at them, and more than a third had been punched. Just under half felt pupil behaviour had got worse in the past two years.." and from the Department "...18,970 pupils at primary and secondary schools were temporarily excluded in 2013-2014 because of physical attacks on teachers and other adults – obstruction, jostling, biting, kicking, hair-pulling – compared with 17,190 the previous year. (The number of permanent exclusions for physical assault against an adult also increased, from 490 to 550.)". There's more in here on similar lines. What we know about the changing nature of modern childhood is relevant here. If you didn't think that schools were places of struggle ...
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Poorer children disproportionately affected by austerity measures, says UN

Poorer children disproportionately affected by austerity measures, says UN | UK Education | Scoop.it
UN committee calls on ministers to act as it says benefit cap and tax credit cuts are undermining children’s rights to adequate standard of living
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Clearly also relevant to G674. An argument for the increasing importance of material deprivation as an insurmountable factor for (too) many supported by the evidence here. A critique of neo-liberal economics and the New Right's war on the poor from the UN. The rights of the child are a cornerstone of the Welfare State.

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Higher education white paper: the big changes

Higher education white paper: the big changes | UK Education | Scoop.it
The sector will be shaken to the core if the government’s reforms go ahead. What would the new landscape look like?
dave king's insight:

Not quite so central to this syllabus but 1. the latest reach for marketization policy, creating a university system allegedly solely accountable to its "customers" (though totally at the mercy of central government control) and 2. the framework for the degrees that many of you anticipate studying for... AND it's another Johnson! Consider who benefits from these reforms, and consider how functional they may be.

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Academy trust faces legal challenge over treatment of disabled pupils

Academy trust faces legal challenge over treatment of disabled pupils | UK Education | Scoop.it
Parents of pupils with special needs say decision to bus their children from Ashton on Mersey school to other site is discriminatory
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One of the biggest weaknesses of the OCR and every other syllabus is its neglect of disability as an aspect of social disadvantage except as a side product (old age?), But this is an interesting story in the light of competition issues created by League Tables and what has been called "selection by the back door". Specialist provision or ghettoisation?

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Home educating parents object to council’s home visit plans

Home educating parents object to council’s home visit plans | UK Education | Scoop.it
Westminster council in London wants to impose annual visits on home schooling families to ‘ensure welfare of children’
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Recent issues with the control of home schooling. Education as surveillance of children? Is it the case that, in some ways , the education system is inevitably opposed to the demands of the family (consider holidays in term time)?

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German expat banker tells countrymen: don't send your kids to British private schools

German expat banker tells countrymen: don't send your kids to British private schools | UK Education | Scoop.it
Arnold Holle, who moved to London from Dusseldorf, says standard has left him
with impression expensive boarding schools here are little better than
German state schools
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Are public schools an economic asset? Are standards better if fees are high?
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The University of Cambridge is planning one of the most expensive business degrees in the world

The University of Cambridge is planning one of the most expensive business degrees in the world | UK Education | Scoop.it
The University of Cambridge has proposed a new business program that may cause some sticker shock. The four-year course is a doctorate of business and will cost students roughly £230,000, as Times Higher Education reported. Not including room and board, that makes it one of the most expensive degrees in the world.
dave king's insight:
Education as commodity. Global universities may not need national governments as much as governments think they might?
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Schools under scrutiny in crackdown on league table 'gaming'

Schools under scrutiny in crackdown on league table 'gaming' | UK Education | Scoop.it
Ofsted says it could resort to penalisation as Department for Education examines ‘GCSE in karaoke’ and other ‘shortcuts’
dave king's insight:
When is a qualification not a qualification? Target-setting culture creates its own logic. And what's wrong with GCSE Karaoke?
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School sixth forms: an outdated luxury | Peter Wilby

School sixth forms: an outdated luxury | Peter Wilby | UK Education | Scoop.it
Sixth-form colleges carry the comprehensive principle into post-16 education, but politicians are wedded to a system that mirrors their own experiences
dave king's insight:
Sixth form colleges seem to be more efficient and successful than school sixth forms (if you can believe the statistics here) but policy makers prefer school sixth forms. You may have chosen wisely, why don't they?
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Why Sweden’s free schools are failing

Why Sweden’s free schools are failing | UK Education | Scoop.it
Perhaps most galling for Swedes is how schools appear to be increasing inequality, rather than eroding it.
dave king's insight:
Free Schools and marketization - the aim is to put the consumer in control and to remove the directions of state planning. Free schools are modelled in part on the Swedish friskolor - Michael Gove acknowledged the influence and even took the name for these "pop-up" schools. And in Sweden, the lack of direct state planning seems to be having both an overall effect in both lowering standards and increasing inequality. A useful cross-cultural evaluation point for any essay on the New Right, marketization. There is clear support here for the work of Ball and Gerwitz regarding increasing inequality in a consumer led market
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Back to class: free schools and academies mythbuster | Red Pepper

Back to class: free schools and academies mythbuster | Red Pepper | UK Education | Scoop.it
Red Pepper looks at the myths surrounding academies and free schools
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Marxists tend to be highly critical of recent educational policies linked to the New Right and marketization. This article - one of a series of "myth busters" can be seen as complementary to the theoretical work of Bowles and Gintis, Althusser, Bourdieu and others.

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Boarding schools in row with British Airways over axing of 'flying nannies' service

Boarding schools in row with British Airways over axing of 'flying nannies' service | UK Education | Scoop.it
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UK education is an international business and the private sector relies heavily on international students and the fees they bring. As in other areas, these schools rely on a variety of hidden subsidies, and the "flying Nannies" are just one of them. Interesting attempt to present this as an issues of child protection rather than financial subsidy. Such services are partly paid for, of course, through cross subsidisation from other ticket purchasers helping to further support a global elite.
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Are England’s academies becoming a cash cow for business?

Are England’s academies becoming a cash cow for business? | UK Education | Scoop.it
Special investigation: how not-for-profit academies have been thrown open to entrepreneurial interests in an unprecedented fashion
dave king's insight:
Guardian article on "an English state education system that has been thrown open to private business interests in unprecedented fashion" - the New Right neo-liberal agenda in action. Rikowski very relevant here. Private industry benefits considerably from such projects - check your own campus!
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GCSEs have bent schools out of shape. So scrap them | Richard Adams

GCSEs have bent schools out of shape. So scrap them | Richard Adams | UK Education | Scoop.it
Ofsted head Michael Wilshaw is right. Children should not wait five years – from the age of 11 to 16 – to be tested
dave king's insight:
Why did you take GCSEs? What function do they fulfil if education should be until 18 or work experience from 14? Think piece from the Guardian, - consider how differing perspectives would react.
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China's university exam cheats may face seven years in jail

China's university exam cheats may face seven years in jail | UK Education | Scoop.it
Students who cheat during entrance exams risk for the first time being jailed as part of government crackdown
dave king's insight:

What happens when you really take standards in exams seriously. THAT's meritocratic! So leave the mobile at home!

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Less than half of students confident their degree will pay for itself

Less than half of students confident their degree will pay for itself | UK Education | Scoop.it
Survey finds 48% of students believe their university education will secure them a graduate-level job to pay off debt
dave king's insight:

Another aspect of the commodification of higher education. Interesting to look at this alongside Rikowsi's work, or perhaps, as a contrast to George Osborne's criticisms when first standing for Parliament of University fees as a "tax on learning". This is a very live issue in the news at present (and not a great motivator to undergraduates completing their Finals no doubt).

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Sutton Trust - At age 13, girls more likely than boys to believe that going to university is important

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Widely reported Sutton Trust based research by Prof Pam Sammons. More than relevant to issues around differential educational achievement, but also to problems of social mobility (G674). Worth reading and quoting!

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Guest post: Nicky Morgan - "Why academisation is best for our schools" | Mumsnet Discussion

Guest post: Nicky Morgan - "Why academisation is best for our schools" | Mumsnet Discussion | UK Education | Scoop.it
As parents, we all want the best for our children. We want to make sure they have access to the best opportunities and to help them grow up into well
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The Minister on why academisation is good for everyone. This got mixed reviews...

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Schools told to monitor pupils' web use to prevent radicalisation - BBC News

Schools told to monitor pupils' web use to prevent radicalisation - BBC News | UK Education | Scoop.it
Schools in England will have to monitor students' internet use under plans to protect them from radicalisation, education secretary Nicky Morgan says.
dave king's insight:
PREVENT - schools as agencies of surveillance / secondary socialisation.
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People who are really good at swearing have an important advantage

People who are really good at swearing have an important advantage | UK Education | Scoop.it
Those who are liberal in their use of swear words are not the lazy and uneducated individuals they are often made out to be, a new study claims.  In fact, a well-stocked vocabulary of swear words is actually a healthy indicator of other verbal abilities.  Writing in the Language Sciences journal, US-based psychologists Kristin Jay and Timothy Jay, dismiss the long-held belief that swearing is a sign of inarticulateness. 
dave king's insight:
Perhaps apparently restricted codes are not so restricted after all, from a psychological perspective at least?
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New private universities risk a ‘catastrophe’

New private universities risk a ‘catastrophe’ | UK Education | Scoop.it
Lower standards, as a result of reforms, will harm UK’s reputation, says leading academic
dave king's insight:
More problems with the current "reforms" in Higher Education regarding the quality of degrees. Risking the brand in a global marketplace?
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