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ISC Daily News Summary

ISC Daily News Summary 10 June 2021

Sexual harassment has become normalised among children, Ofsted warns

Child welfare

According to a review by Ofsted, sexual harassment, online sexual abuse and sharing nude photos are becoming "normalised" among school children, and pupils often do not see the point of challenging or reporting this behaviour. By Jason Farrell, Sky News. Ofsted's recommendations, as well as the Department for Education's (DfE) promises for schools, have been summarised by Schools Week. By John Dickens.

In its review, Ofsted urges school and college leaders to "act on the assumption" that sexual harassment is happening in their schools, even if they do not have specific information to indicate that is the case. By Catherine Lough, Tes.

Julie Robinson, chief executive of the Independent Schools Council, has described Ofsted's review as a "positive first step", adding: "Schools have an important role to play in tackling this issue and want to be part of the solution." By Jo Golding, IE Today. The article quotes Sally-Anne Huang, chair of the Headmasters' and Headmistresses' Conference. Read the ISC's statement here.

Writing in The Times, Soma Sara says the report's findings "reinforce what we have said from the beginning - rape culture is everywhere, including in all schools".

Schools Week reports inspectors will now question schools that fail to provide a log of sexual abuse and harassment cases. By James Carr.

Poll findings from YouGov suggest 80 per cent of people believe that parents should be held accountable for boys' sexual misconduct or harassment, rather than teachers. By Amy Gibbons, Tes.

Coronavirus: School catch-up plans "will hold Britain back for a generation"

General education

Labour leader Keir Starmer has condemned ministers' school catch-up plans, warning: "If the Government doesn't change course, it will hold Britain back for a generation." By Peter Walker, The Guardian.

Children's minister Vicky Ford has denied Labour's claim that the Government's approach to education recovery is a "catalogue of chaos", saying: "It is a catalogue of cash targeted at evidence-based support for our young people". By Freddie Whittaker, Schools Week.

Alan Milburn, a former Labour cabinet minister and chairman of the Social Mobility Foundation, writes in The Times arguing the Government alone cannot tackle educational recovery; "It requires action on the part of councils and communities alongside educators and employers."

Tes reports schools will now be able to claim extra financial support for pupils who were temporarily granted free school meals during the pandemic, following a legal challenge against the DfE. By Amy Gibbons.

New figures show coronavirus cases among under-15s in Scotland are at their highest level since the pandemic began. By David McCann, The Times.

'Headteachers are not empowered to raise concerns about education in Scotland'

Scottish education

Melvyn Roffe, principal of George Watson's College, has said school leaders have "all of the responsibility and none of the authority" under the Scottish Government's Headteachers' Charter for School Empowerment. By Mark McLaughlin, The Times.

Writing in The Times, Mr Roffe argues a decline in the OECD Pisa test scores revealed problems with Scotland's education system that "should already have been evident".

Rod Grant, headteacher at Clifton Hall School, writes in Tes stating "education bodies need more independence from government to serve schools best".

A closer look at how the Duke of Edinburgh's Award shaped young people's lives

General education

Speaking to The Telegraph, five young people explain how their lives have been transformed by the Duke of Edinburgh's Award, on what would have been Prince Philip's 100th birthday. By Camilla Tominey.

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