Families in major English cities are still struggling to find places in their preferred primary schools, with demand remaining high in local authorities including Manchester, Birmingham and several London boroughs. Despite a levelling off in the number of children enrolling for their first year of formal schooling aged four or five, many councils across England reported rising numbers of applications for about 700,000 primary school places this September. On national primary school offer day, London’s local authorities announced a one percentage point drop to 85% in the proportion of families who were offered their first preference, while there was also a slight dip in those receiving any of their top three school choices compared with 2018. There was a similar outcome in Manchester, where 91% of families were offered their first preference, a fall of almost two percentage points compared with last year, and a similar rise in the numbers offered schools they did not name in their … [Read more...] about Families still struggle to find primary school places in English cities
Schools offering rn programs
School admissions appeals and waiting lists in England are reinforcing the gap between rich and poor in education, according to a study from the Education Policy Institute (EPI). The thinktank’s research found families in the most affluent areas were twice as likely to secure their child a place at their first choice of secondary school on appeal as those in the poorest. Children from some ethnic minority backgrounds are also less likely to get into their preferred schools using the system of appeals and waiting lists. Ten per cent of black pupils and 12% of Asian pupils get their first choice via these routes, compared with 21% of white British pupils and 17% of Chinese pupils. The study is the first detailed analysis of the school appeals system, through which families who do not get their first choice of secondary school can challenge the decision. Researchers studied newly released data from the Department for Education (DfE) on school preferences and concluded that the … [Read more...] about Appeals and waiting lists for school places favour the rich – study
Did you ever play that game when you were a child, where someone dragged you along on a rug sliding over a shiny floor? Then you’ll remember that sensation of the ground appearing to slip underneath you. Does your job feel like that? I ask, because the main people announcing education policy at the moment are Theresa May and Nick Gibb. Perhaps it works like this: the prime minister is headteacher; you are deputy and Nick Gibb is the ambitious assistant head. The PM has her time taken up dealing with playground fighting between two year 9 boys, Hammond and Johnson, while Mr Gibb is doing his usual job of telling people they’re not good enough. A couple of speeches last week, though, from Mrs May and Mr Gibb, suggest this picture may not be accurate. You’ll know that Mrs May had planned to open new grammar schools. Then the awful event of last June occurred and Mrs May found that even with the brown envelope deal with your Northern Irish friends, there … [Read more...] about Dear Ms Greening, why won’t your boss give up on new grammar schools?
Councils across England are struggling to keep pace with rising numbers of applications for secondary school, leaving thousands of pupils without a place at any of their preferred schools. More than 600,000 families across England and Wales were told on Friday which secondary school their children would go to in September – but in many areas there was disappointment, with shrinking proportions receiving their first choice. According to some estimates, as many as one in four families did not get their first preference in England. Labour blamed the government policies that took the power to create new schools away from local authorities. The problem appeared most acute in London, the south-east and other big cities such as Bristol and Birmingham, where the twin impacts of the post-2006 baby boom and population inflows have been most keenly felt. Nick Gibb, the schools minister for England, said: “This government is determined to create more choice for parents when it comes to … [Read more...] about Surge in demand for schools leaves councils struggling to cope
As the head of classics at High Storrs school, the last remaining state comprehensive in Sheffield to offer Latin (and classical civilisation) on its curriculum, it was with great sadness but little surprise that I read of Richmond school’s decision to cease teaching Latin from next September (Yorkshire school to stop teaching Latin after 600 years, 22 January). Funding for state schools is now at such a low level that we are seeing a wholesale narrowing of the curriculum, exacerbated by the prescriptive nature of the English baccalaureate “qualification” (discussed so eloquently by Rufus Norris in his 17 January article “Why are we squeezing creativity out of our schools?”), which excludes classical civilisation GCSE from its suite of subjects. While we do not have quite such an illustrious history as our fellow Yorkshire school, classical subjects have flourished here for many years, but we too are struggling and have recently had to launch a campaign to … [Read more...] about Latin lessons dying out in state schools