Truancy can have dreadful consequences for a child's life chances. Even absence from primary school can affect a pupil's GCSE results, as we saw in the article Spotting truants before it is too late. Groupcall Emerge can play a large part in identifying patterns of truancy, but then how do you get those kids back into school?
There is one constant source of teacher dissatisfaction, often cited as the main reason for leaving the profession. You guessed it: workload. Survey after survey, over several years, have told the same story. Teachers want to do the best job they can, but there are so many demands on them, not least in admin-related work, that many end up working far too many hours.
We've all heard about them and laughed at them: those school reports that look as though they're saying one thing but are in fact saying something quite different. "Has an imaginative approach" could mean "Makes paper aeroplanes out of the worksheets". "Good at decision making" might mean "Bosses the other kids about and doesn't listen to their point of view".
Are parents evenings anachronistic?
David (not his real name) was slumped forward on his desk. To all intents and purposes, he looked like he’d fallen asleep or, worse, passed out.
You might think that every parent will open every school email. After all, it’s bound to be something that concerns the welfare of their child. But you’d be wrong. Even if people are completely committed to opening the school’s emails, they may not do so, for a number of reasons.
Taking Steps to Reduce Teacher Workloads
Earlier this year, Ofsted committed to reducing unnecessary workloads with their involvement in Teacher Workload Review Groups. The groups’ recommendations for school leaders, teachers, the DfE and Ofsted aim to find a balance between what is best for pupils while being manageable for teachers.
This is promising news for teachers, however stress and pressure within the profession continues to increase. The DfE found the average primary school teacher works 55 hours per week, including nearly 19 hours working in the evening and weekends. Secondary teachers work 53 hours on average, with 16 hours spent on work outside of working hours, so when should you push back and how do you find a work-life balance?
The impact government has on schools is constantly under a high level of scrutiny by those inside the profession and those with a vested interest, such as parents. In recent years, commentary has been focused on reforms to the curriculum and the mounting workload of teachers, but schools are now facing an even greater challenge to their finances.
Now that we’re in a post-levels world, rewarding pupils’ achievement has become easier. Why? Previously, schools were concerned with whether pupils have achieved a level, almost achieved it, achieved it securely, ad nauseum — distinctions which didn’t mean very much in the first place. But now, schools can set their own criteria for determining whether or not pupils have achieved the learning goals set out in the National Curriculum.
Information from a report by London & Partners and EdTech UK has shown that Education Technology is one of the fastest growing technology sectors in the UK. With over 1,000 start-ups across the country, the sector was valued at £45bn in 2015 and is forecast to be worth £129bn by 2020.