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ISC Daily News Summary

ISC Daily News Summary 25 June 2018

Debate about difficulty of new GCSEs compared to international GCSEs


There has been coverage this weekend focusing on allegations that IGCSEs, taken by many independent schools, are easier than the new GCSEs and are therefore of less value as a qualification. By Sian Griffiths, The Sunday Times. Article quotes Shaun Fenton, headmaster of Reigate Grammar School and chair elect of the Headmasters' and Headmistresses' Conference (HMC) and Richard Cairns, headmaster of Brighton College.

The Sunday Times also published an opinion piece by Shaun Fenton about this topic. In addition, the paper's deputy editor, Sarah Baxter, has written a commentary which mentions the issue.

10am starts leave pupils less moody and more focused

Independent Sector

Sixth formers at Queen Anne’s School in Caversham have been able to spend longer in bed each morning, following an experiment which aimed to increase pupils sleep to nine or 10 hours' per night and, consequently, leave them less moody and more focused. Quotes headmistress, Julia Harrington. By Sian Griffiths, The Sunday Times.

Tes international award given to Brighton College

International Education

Brighton College has won the Tes international school award, following the school's work in Ghana and its establishment of UK-registered charity, Reading Spots, which aims create community-led libraries in rural areas of Ghana. These libraries or education centres are open to all members of the community free of charge, providing educational resources for all schools and adults in the area.

Single-sex schools 'are not mirrors of society but catalysts for social change'

General Education

Kevin Stannard, director of innovation and learning at the Girls' Day School Trust, writes in Tes about the status of single-sex schools today.

'Why grammar schools survive'

Grammar Schools

Joe Nutt, an educational consultant and author, writes in Tes giving his views on why grammar schools work. Within the article he references a meeting at Rugby School, attended by teachers from state, independent and grammar schools, in which he commends the collaborative approach all sectors took to ensure effective working practice.

Mobile phones to be locked away during school hours

General Education

Many secondary schools across the country are introducing bans on mobile phones after research revealed it makes children more sociable, active and alert. By Charles Hymas, The Telegraph. Quotes assistant head at Latymer Upper School, Matthew Chataway. Daily Mail also reports on this story, leading with comments made by Richard Cairns, headmaster at Brighton College. The Guardian features an editorial piece about the issue.

Pass mark for phonics screening check to remain at 32

Primary Education and Early Years

The Department for Education has announced that the phonics screening check pass mark will remain at 32. By Freddie Whittaker, Schools Week. Tes has also included a piece titled: 'Need to know: The phonics check'.

Britain's school children face mental health epidemic

Mental Health

More schoolchildren are struggling with mental health problems but are not receiving adequate help or treatment, according to teachers. By Denis Campbell, The Guardian.

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