Category Archives: Education policy

Eliminating unnecessary workload

The ‘Workload Challenge’ consultation ran between 22 October and 21 November 2014. In February 2015 the analysis of this survey was published. The survey asked three main questions about workload: Tell us about the unnecessary and unproductive tasks which take … Continue reading

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Lesson observations: Would picking a top set get you a better grading?

Lesson observations: Approach with caution! For any measure of teaching effectiveness to be useful, it needs to be valid. To be valid, a measure also needs to be reliable. Reliability represents the consistency of a measure. A measure is said … Continue reading

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The ‘artificial science’ of teaching: System vs Individual competence

Over the last two posts, I’ve been exploring the extent to which teaching is a natural ability and whether there is a formal or ‘professional’ body of knowledge or set of skills required for effective teaching. In summary: The ability … Continue reading

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The ‘artificiality’ of teaching

In my last post, I argued that the universality and the spontaneous development of teaching leads to the conclusion that teaching is a natural ability. The post generated some really interesting responses, but one from @informed_edu made a direct attempt … Continue reading

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Is there a ‘cargo cult’ approach to school improvement?

“… I found things that even more people believe, such as that we have some knowledge of how to educate. There are big schools of reading methods and mathematics methods, and so forth, but if you notice, you’ll see the … Continue reading

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What really improves teacher quality?

In an interesting article for the Fabian Society, Andrew Old discusses the problems inherent in the desire to raise the quality of teaching. “‘Focusing on teacher quality’ … sounds agreeable, but much of the detail will be impossibly difficult to … Continue reading

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Does teacher accountability undermine student ownership of learning?

Here’s a fairly old, but none-the-less thought provoking article from Daniel Willingham where he argues that it is important that students experience a variety of teaching styles and take on increasing responsibility for their learning as they move through school. … Continue reading

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PISA 2012

It always annoys me the way these things are reported in the press. The actual report has some interesting comparisons between education in the UK and other OECD countries. Education systems in the Far East have done as well as … Continue reading

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Areas for improvement

Happened upon an interesting blog article – the results of a randomised sample of Ofsted reports which identified the most common cited ‘areas for improvement’. What’s quite helpful are the links to resources for these identified areas: Ofsted reports – … Continue reading

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