Tuesday, 28 January 2020

28 January 2020 Schools benefit from £2.4m sports fund from the DfE

Funding worth £2.4m to encourage better sports activities in schools has been announced by the Department for Education (DfE)

Nine schools are to share in a £0.5m grant to trial new ways to engage the least active pupils in sports lessons and to meet the new Ofsted inspection requirements.  The funding will also help schools develop the skills and confidence of PE teachers

It also includes £1.6m to enable schools to open up their sports facilities to communities after school and in the holidays

Wednesday, 22 January 2020

22 January 2020 Ofsted annual report warns against 'narrowing the curriculum'

In the annual report, published today, Ofsted has warned that it will not turn a 'blind eye' to schools narrowing the curriculum

The chief inspector says that 'we must not succumb to the seductive but wrong-headed logic that we are helping disadvantaged children by turning a blind eye to schools that are narrowing education if they deliver acceptable grades at the end'

Concerns were also raised about science in primary schools.  The inspectorate said that it understood why science has fallen down the priority list in many primaries, but that some schools were showing that there was space in the curriculum to give children a good grounding in maths and English whilst also building knowledge in other areas

In recent weeks there have been a number of major developments that could change the way that Ofsted inspects schools, including ending the exemption that stops outstanding schools being routinely inspected.  During the election campaign, the Conservatives also pledged to pilot 'no-notice' inspections and extend the length of inspections in primary and secondary schools over three days. 

Ofsted announced last week that it would trial a new form of deeper inspection into what it called 'stuck schools', which have been rated as less than good over four inspections between 2006 and 2019

Monday, 13 January 2020

13 January 2020 Ofsted announces proposals to inspect outstanding schools

The Government has proposed that Ofsted will inspect schools currently rated as outstanding from September 2020

Schools rated as outstanding are currently exempt from inspection.  Under the proposals, which are the subject of a consultation, all outstanding schools will be brought back into the regular inspection cycle, with Ofsted visiting them every four or five years.  This will affect about 3700 schools when the exemption is lifted in September

The proposals, which are subject to Parliamentary approval, will prioritise those schools which have gone the longest since inspection

Monday, 6 January 2020

6 January 2020 DfE announces additional funding for developing music, arts and culture in schools

The Department for Education (DfE) has announced additional funding to support the development of music, arts and culture in schools

The curriculum schemes which will receive a total of £85million for 2020/21 include

- Music education hubs
- In harmony
- National youth music organisations and Music for youth
- Cultural education

The music education hubs, which support the teaching of music in schools through subsidised instrument lessons and ensembles, have benefitted from £300million funding between 2016 and 2020