ISC Daily News Summary

ISC Daily News Summary 30 November 2023

'We're all professionals, all trying to improve outcomes for children'


In an article for Tes, three school leaders share how they have been collaborating on a number of projects - from Dragons' Den-style business contests to maths symposiums - to engage young people and widen their horizons. By Toby Whalen, deputy headteacher at Mile Cross Primary School, Nicola Hill, assistant head (partnerships) at Norwich School, and Naomi Palmer, principal at Ormiston Victory Academy.

Spotlight On: Lessons learned from the first year of Teddies Collaborates

ISC blog

As Partnership Week continues, Rachel Moffatt, partnerships manager at St Edward’s School, Oxford, writes a Spotlight On blog reflecting on the success of Teddies Collaborates, a service programme that sees the school’s entire Lower Sixth take part in weekly partnership placements.

'There’s no perfect school, but there is a perfect school for each child'

Single-sex schools

Headmistress of Cumnor House for Girls Amanda McShane was interviewed by John Pienaar on Times Radio Drive earlier this week as part of a debate with Clive Lewis MP on independent schools, and single-sex education more specifically. In response to Mr Pienaar's question "are single-sex schools going out of fashion?", Mrs McShane said her own school is seeing a "year-on-year growth in numbers" but acknowledged the popularity of co-education. Emphasising the importance of choice, Mrs McShane said: "We want what is best for the children, it doesn’t matter if it’s a state school or private school. We want those children to develop, we want them to reach their full potential." 
The segment starts at 01:22:00 and lasts approximately 10 minutes. 

Jenny Brown, headmistress of City of London School for Girls, writes in The Telegraph in response to the recent reports on single-sex schools. She states that while more schools are going co-educational "this fight for survival is not my experience at all. Applications for places at [my school] are higher than ever." Referencing the role of single-sex schools in the wider education system, Mrs Brown adds: "We need to protect and preserve girls’ rights to experience adolescence without worrying about the presence of the opposite sex."

Ruth Perry believed Ofsted inspector was a 'bully', husband tells inquest


The inquest continues into the death of Ruth Perry, a headteacher who took her own life following an Ofsted inspection. Mrs Perry reportedly told her husband she believed the Ofsted inspector was a “bully” and had “an agenda”. When asked whether he should have paused the inspection, given Mrs Perry’s mental state, the inspector, Mr Derry, responded: "No, not at all, there was a major concern around the safeguarding of children, and this needed to be immediately and safely addressed." By Louisa Clarence-Smith, The Telegraph.

Expert advises on what Labour’s new CPD pledge to teachers should entail

Teacher training

Loic Menzies, a visiting fellow at the Sheffield Institute of Education, writes in Tes about Labour's pledge for a new Teacher Training Entitlement as part of its "opportunity mission". Mr Menzies argues that a focus on development throughout a teacher’s career makes sense, but it needs to be delivered well and should avoid becoming a tick-box exercise for school leaders.

Councils claim they are being 'held to ransom' by private providers of childcare

Primary education and early years

New figures from local authorities in England show taxpayers have been paying as much as £63,000 a week for a single child's social care placement, equivalent to £3.3m a year.  The number of placements that cost over £10,000 a week for the care of vulnerable children has increased from 120 five years ago to more than 1,500. “Local authorities are the sole purchasers of placements, yet are often held to ransom by private providers due to lack of sufficiency meaning costs can be thousands of pounds a week for individual placements for children in their care,” said John Pearce, president of the Association of Directors of Children’s Services. By Robert Booth, The Guardian.

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