Return to Teaching

Return to Teaching

There is an ongoing crisis caused by staffing shortages in schools because of the pandemic. Due to the Omicron variant spreading so widely and quickly, many teachers across the country are having to self-isolate. There is immense pressure on the government, particularly from parents, to ensure that schools remain open for face-to-face teaching so that another school year is not lost.

On 20th December 2021, Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi put out a call for retired teachers and those who have left the profession to return temporarily to fill the gap.

On 12th January, the government reported that it was estimated that 585 teachers had already signed up to return to teaching.

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How reliable are Ofsted gradings

How reliable are Ofsted gradings?

Ofsted has recently announced that they are going to reinspect the schools that were previously graded outstanding. This is significant since many of these schools have not been inspected for more than a decade.

Amanda Spielman, Chief Inspector, aims to halve the number of outstanding schools which is not unrealistic considering that schools may be under a new framework and standards since they were last inspected.

The issue is that many people within education do not trust the reliability of Ofsted findings and are calling into question whether the inspections have any real value in determining whether a school is effective.

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Building Resilience in Children

Building Resilience in Children: COVID-19

The stress and anxiety experienced by children due to lockdowns and lack of socialisation has already been well documented. However, one thing we are beginning to see is the effect of the government’s pressure to “catch up” children to meet their age-related goals and regain momentum towards pre-pandemic results.

Inevitably, teachers are already coming under intense pressure to ensure the pupils in their classes are reaching their expectations with very little mitigation of the difficulties this is causing.

Unfortunately, it isn’t just the teachers feeling this pressure, as the children are at risk of experiencing the fear of failure too.

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Military Service Pupils in Schools

Supporting Military Service Pupils in Schools

Did you know that whilst many children of parents serving in the British Armed Forces attend schools that have a high percentage of service pupils, the majority attend schools with less than ten service children?

Children in this situation have unique circumstances where they may have been separated from a parent for long periods, moved homes and schools frequently, or even relocated to different countries.

Teachers can be ill-equipped to understand how they can help these military pupils but fortunately, a charity called Little Troopers has developed a programme of resources to help pupils from reception to sixth form. Designed with the help of educational psychologists, behavioural experts and play therapists, the resources are very helpful to any school that has children from a service background.

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What is COP26?

COP26 – What can schools do to tackle climate change?

What is COP26?

With climate change in the headlines daily, it has been impossible to miss the news coverage of the COP26 conference held in Glasgow from 31st October. Despite this being the 26th Conference of the Parties brought together by the United Nations to discuss climate change, it has only been this year that it has obtained so much attention in the media worldwide.

The UK government took a leading role in this year’s conference and the Department for Education (DfE) has been given the huge responsibility for fighting against climate change by educating young people.

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Teacher Feedback

Reducing the Burden of Teacher Feedback

Time spent on marking students’ work and writing individual feedback has long been seen as adding to teacher workload. Moving away from written feedback is an obvious option to reduce teacher workload but schools are often reluctant to let go of the evidence that written feedback provides.

In an environment where school leaders are looking to reduce teacher workloads, it is important to be able to prove to Ofsted and parents that verbal feedback is an effective alternative to providing written feedback.

Looking at some current research into verbal feedback methods may help school leaders and teachers ensure they are following best practices. It should certainly open a debate into how changes could be trialled.

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Great Head Teacher

What Makes a Great Head Teacher?

A question often asked in education is how to determine whether a head teacher is a good one. The attributes required to be one of the best head teachers may well be the same as required by any great leader, but a head teacher’s role can be particularly complex whatever type of school they are leading.

This is a list of eight qualities that you will want to see in the best head teachers.

A great head teacher:

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Teachers Read Books

Why do Teachers Read Books About Education?

According to the NEU, many teachers suffer from stress and a heavy workload during term time, so is it unexpected that many teachers choose to read books about education during their holidays?

There has been some stigma attached to teachers who use their free time reading education books with many on social media showing a lack of understanding and using derogatory language to suggest that they don’t have a life.

There are many reasons why some teachers choose to do this extra reading in their holiday time.

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Teacher Stress

Teacher Stress in England

Teacher stress in England is a topic that has been raised over several years with many teachers opting to leave the profession, retire early or look for alternatives within education. Professor Wettstein carried out a study in 2020  that concluded that many factors lead to teaching being a highly stressful career across the globe.

Many teachers in England each year look towards the private sector for a less stressful teaching option but is this a viable alternative that will reduce teacher stress?

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