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WHAT MAKES A GOOD SCHOOL BUILDING? RIBA’s Caroline Buckingham shares her views on how good initial design can save on running and maintenance costs


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Cover image: Ysgol Bae Baglan school (Credit: James Morris)

Business Information for Education Decision Makers SPORT




WHAT MAKES A GOOD SCHOOL BUILDING? RIBA’s Caroline Buckingham shares her views on how good

‘Sugar tax’ to help schools tackle childhood obesity

initial design can save on running and maintenance costs

The Soft Drinks Industry Levy, dubbed the ‘Sugar Tax’, has come into effect and is expected to raise £240 million each year. The government says the money will go into schools, doubling the Primary Sports Premium, funding upgrades to sports facilities, and paying for new PE equipment. PLUS: CASHLESS PAYMENTS | CATERING EQUIPMENT | FACILITIES MANAGEMENT

The levy is also expected to go toward healthy school breakfast clubs. This measure is to help tackle childhood obesity, as in England alone, statistics show that a third of children are obese or overweight when they leave primary school. In Wales, statistics show a rise in the number of obese four to five year-olds over the last two years, with more than one in four children recorded as overweight or obese in 2016/17.

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This isn’t helped by the fact that timetabled PE in secondary schools is being cut, as identified by the Youth Sports Trust (YST). While parents must do their part, schools have a vital role in promoting physical activity and ensuring it occurs on a daily basis. But the YST data reveals that staff cuts and pressures in other areas of the curriculum is resulting in PE being slashed. Read the full feature on page 45.

Angela Pisanu, editor

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Contents Education Business 23.3 07 News


DfE announces new measures for recording primary school performance; “Greater consistency” is needed in school inspections

13 Design & build

Education Business chats to RIBA’s Caroline Buckingham about the importance of good design when developing new school buildings. Plus a look at the schools nominated for a RIBA Regional Award


23 Facilities management

Schools in Wales are set to benefit from a £14 million cash pot that will be used to carry out small scale repairs and maintenance. This will complement work that is already being carried out by the Welsh Government’s 21st Century Schools and Education Programme

29 Catering equipment

34 Cashless schools

Going cashless can help schools save money by streamlining their payment processes, but it has also become an element of strengthening parental communications and engagement in their children’s life at school

37 Trips

The south coast has a wealth of military and maritime places of interest for school trips, as it was often the last line of defence against would-be invaders


41 Play

As the number of play spaces in the community declines, school playgrounds are becoming increasingly important, often representing the only opportunity some children have for outdoor play


Education Business magazine

Research from the Youth Sport Trust (YST) finds that time‑tabled physical education is being squeezed and warns of what will happen to children’s future health if they stop moving. The charity’s chief executive officer, Ali Oliver, offers advice to schools on how they can ensure physical activity stays on the curriculum

53 IT & computing

As education technology continues to develop, John Jackson, CEO at London Grid for Learning, talks to Education Business about current trends, digital innovation, school transformation, and how organisations can future proof their technology purchases

59 Air pollution

Children are particularly vulnerable to air pollution. With 900 schools across the UK located on or near illegally polluted roads, what can schools do to address the issue? Client Earth’s Andrea Lee investigates

How can schools maximise the full potential of their kitchens to deliver healthy, nutritious meals?


45 Sport


63 Landscaping

Often spectacular spaces are created but there is a failure in understanding the level of maintenance involved and the fact that plants could look very different in a few years’ time, resulting in green spaces looking neglected. A professional landscaper can make sure this is all taken into consideration when planning a new green space, writes BALI’s Stephen Ensell

67 Business Show 2018: London

Education Business sat down with the marketing director for the Business Show, Hassan Allan, to get insights into the event and its future





DfE announces new measures for recording primary school performance The Department for Education has announced that assessments to measure pupil progress from the start of primary school are to be designed and delivered by the National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER). The aim of the assessments is to make sure schools are recognised for getting the best outcomes for their pupils and that teachers get credit for hard work during primary education.

The Reception Baseline Assessment will be administered as a 20-minute, teacher-recorded assessment of children’s communication, language, literacy and early mathematics skills. Pupils will not have to prepare for the test as it will cover material that many children will already be aware of, and it will replace the statutory tests which pupils have faced at the end of Key Stage 1.

According to the DfE, the activity-based assessment will enable better, fairer measures of primary school performance by capturing the progress teachers help pupils to make from the first weeks of reception all the way through to the end of Year 6. READ MORE


Obesity levels of reception pupils in Wales rise WELLBEING Statistics by the Child Measurement Programme revealed a rise in the number of obese four to five year‑olds over the last two years. The data shows that more than one in four children assessed were overweight or obese in 2016/17. The gap in levels of obesity is now at 6.2 per cent between those living in the most disadvantaged areas (14.9 per cent) and the least disadvantaged (8.7 per cent). The CMP is a national surveillance programme run by Public Health Wales recording the heights and weights of children in their reception year of primary school.

Linda Bailey, consultant lead for the Child Measurement Programme said: “The number of children that are obese at the age of four to five years old has been going in the wrong direction over the past two years. “In particular, over the last two years the level of obesity has shown a statistically significant increase. While it is too soon to see an overall trend, there is an increasing gap in obesity levels between the most and least disadvantaged areas in Wales.” READ MORE


SEND pupils are not getting the education and support they need, research shows Almost a quarter of children with special education needs are not in school, according to a poll by the National Education Union (NEU). The poll of over 440 parents shows over 40 per cent of SEND pupils over the age of four are not in full-time school and half of parents are not happy about the type of provision their child is in. The research also shows that parents are struggling to get their children diagnosed in terms of special needs, with 36 per cent having to wait over two years for a diagnosis. Fifty per cent note waiting over a year. Three quarters (74 per cent) of parents complain that they are not given adequate support to help their child. According to the research, parents believe that more SEND provision would help their child (77 per cent) and 72 per cent

believe easier access to support after a child has been diagnosed would also help. In addition, 58 per cent say there needs to be shorter diagnosis times.


Education employees want better wellbeing support in the workplace Over two thirds (64 per cent) of adults working the education industry believe that not enough is being done to support the physical and mental wellbeing of employees. The survey by Westfield Health found that over two thirds (68 per cent) of workers in the education industry would like to see the government do more to promote their physical and mental wellbeing. In addition, 80 per cent believe their employer is specifically not doing enough to help employees deal with work-related stress, anxiety and other mental health issues. Almost two quarters (73 per cent) of educational employees stated they’d use wellbeing services if their employer provided them. The top things they would like to be offered are: health check-ups (53 per cent); emotional wellness (53 per cent); and counselling (48 per cent). David Capper, commercial director of Westfield Health, said: “The total number of UK working days lost to stress, anxiety and depression resulting from long working hours is 12.5 million days. “Therefore, it makes sense for employers to relieve some of the pressure through wellbeing initiatives. Not only would they be supporting our economy, they’ll make huge cost savings by looking after their staff’s health, with presenteeism now costing businesses up to three times more than absenteeism.” READ MORE



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“Greater consistency” is needed in school inspections, research shows Research by the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL) shows that some schools are being asked to provide evidence which inspectors are not supposed to request. ASCL leader Geoff Barton is now calling for more consistency with school inspections. The ASCL survey found that despite Ofsted saying inspections do not require schools to predict attainment of their pupils or progress score, 62 per cent of respondents stated that they were asked to predict pupil attainment. Forty-seven per cent said they were asked for predicted progress scores. Ofsted also says it does not require tracking of how pupils are getting

on, however, 45 per cent said they were asked for this information. The research also found that although Ofsted says that its inspectors do not expect “particular frequency or quantity of work in pupil’s books”, 34 per cent were asked to see this type of evidence. However, there are signs that the situation is improving in the first two of these areas, with about eight per cent fewer respondents reporting such requests in 2017 and 2018, compared to 2016, while the proportion in the third area was broadly similar. Geoff Barton, general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, said: “We have to reduce unsustainable


and onerous levels of workload in schools because of the impact this burden has on the welfare of staff and on teacher recruitment and retention. “It seems as if Ofsted is making progress in ensuring that its inspection teams do not make requests for evidence in line with its own myth-busting guidance. “But in certain key areas, there is clearly some way to go if Ofsted is to show the level of consistency that it would rightly expect from school leaders.” READ MORE


School stress is making pupils suicidal, union says

One-in-three children not ‘school ready’ when starting primary Nearly one in three (29 per cent) children who start primary school in England do not have a sufficient level of development to be ‘school ready’, according to analysis by education charity Teach First. However, the figures vary between regions and communities. For example, four in ten children are not school ready in Liverpool (38 per cent) and Halton (39 per cent), but in Lewisham it falls to 21 per cent, in Greenwich it’s 22 per cent and in Richmond upon Thames it’s 22 per cent. Highlighting the gap between rich and poor, 44 per cent of those eligible for Free School Meals were found to not be ‘school ready’ by the time they start primary school, while this falls to 27 per cent for those not eligible for Free School Meals. School readiness means children have a good level of social and emotional development, knowledge and skills to provide the foundation for good progress through school. School readiness is assessed when children start primary school and takes into account factors

including communication skills, their ability to listen or pay attention, and how they play and share with other children. The gap between poorer and wealthier children varies across the country. More than half of poorer children in Halton (56 per cent) and in York, Leicestershire and Cumbria (54 per cent) start primary without being school ready. Some of the biggest gaps in school readiness between poorer pupils and their wealthier peers are in traditionally affluent areas. York (a 31 percentage point gap) and Bath & North East Somerset (28 percentage points) have the biggest ‘school readiness’ gap between poorer and wealthier children. By contrast, in a handful of areas in London there is almost no gap between poorer and wealthier children. The gap is just six per cent in Haringey and Newham, five per cent in Barking & Dagenham, and in Hackney the gap is just four per cent. READ MORE

A survey by the National Education Union (NEU) has revealed that nearly half of education staff say secondary pupils have been suicide due to pressures at school. The research also found that 81 per cent of those in secondary schools reported that pupils are self-harming as a result of pressures they face. The survey of 730 education staff working found that more than half (56 per cent) of pupils’ mental health issues are leading to self-harm. In addition, 45 per cent reported pupils having eating disorders, and 48 per cent said children were having panic attacks. Almost seven-in-ten (68 per cent) of respondents said they believe their school or college is having to deal with more pupil mental health issues than five years ago, and a third (34 per cent ) said pupils are dealing with significantly more than one year ago. Eighty-two per cent of respondents believe that tests and exams have the biggest impact on the mental health of pupils. Sixty-seven per cent said they feel it is due to pressure from schools to do well; 50 per cent said it was due to a narrowing of the curriculum, and 48 per cent said it was due to the pressure they put on themselves to do well academically.






Schools to stop collecting nationality data on pupils Campaigners have stated that the Department for Education (DfE) is to stop collecting data on nationality, country or birth in schools in England. Against Borders for Children (ABC), which was set up in September 2016 in protest of this policy, has labelled this a “comprehensive victory”. More than £12,000 had been donated by over 500 people in order to pay for a court action to overturn the UK Government policy on this issue, represented by Liberty. The protest group had campaigned to get this school requirement dropped out of fears the information could be used to check on the immigration status of pupils. Gracie Bradley, advocacy and policy officer at Liberty (and member of the ABC campaign), said: “This is a huge victory for the teachers, parents and campaigners who stood up and refused to comply with this attempt to

build foreign children lists. It gives hope that – if more people stand up and resist – we can succeed in dismantling the government’s hostile environment policies piece by piece. “But it doesn’t change the fact that the Department for Education is still sharing the addresses of hundreds of children and families with the Home Office every month – and the government freely admits that it will use the immigration exemption in the Data Protection Bill to help the Home Office access yet more school records for immigration enforcement. “Until undocumented people are able to access vital front line services without fear of being shopped to the Home Office, there will still be children in the UK robbed of their right to an education and worse.” READ MORE


Measures announced to ensure quality education is delivered in and out of school The Department for Education (DfE) has announced a package of measures designed to make sure children receive the best education, whether at home or outside of school. Announced by School Systems Minister Lord Agnew, the announcement will support the families of the estimated 45,500 children that are educated at home, providing parents and local councils with strengthened guidance so both understand their rights and responsibilities. A Call for Evidence has been launched to ask for the views of parents and local authorities on how to ensure children receive the expected standard of education at home. This includes how effective registration schemes are for children educated at home and how the government can better support families who educate their children at home.

The Education Minister also announced £3 million to support the joint working of local authorities, the police, Ofsted, the government and other agencies in tackling the minority of out of school settings that seek to undermine British values or expose children to other harmful practices. This work will help to share best practice across the country. Minister for School Systems Lord Agnew said: “Across the country there are thousands of dedicated parents who are doing an excellent job of educating their children at home, and many selfless volunteers working for clubs and organisations that help to enrich children’s education outside of school.”

Malcolm Drakes: A word from TES’s Primary School of the Year Following a six year transformation – from Special Measures in 2012, to Outstanding in 2014 and accredited Teaching School in 2016 – Broadford Primary was awarded TES’s Primary School of the Year last year. Malcolm Drakes, the school’s executive headteacher, explains the school’s remarkable journey Staff have worked tirelessly to ensure all pupils succeed, regardless of socio-economic background. Based in an area of high deprivation, 68 per cent of pupils are identified as vulnerable. Despite this, achievement of pupils has reached exceptional levels. In 2016 we ranked in the top 100 of all schools nationally for the third year running. Broadford demonstrates a relentless drive to innovate and improve. Pupils are provided with a rich and broad curriculum that raises aspirations and challenges pupils in and out of the classroom. We recognise pupils don’t routinely access enrichment beyond school; therefore we deliver an ‘Experience Entitlement’ closing this gap between Nursery & Y6. In addition our cultural roadmap ensures every pupil leaves Broadford having visited the most significant museums, galleries and theatres in London. By 2015, 100 per cent of pupils in Year 5 & 6 had been to all the key cultural centres. Located near Stratford, we’ve also been able to develop our Olympic Legacy curriculum. We’ve allowed students to go on boat trips along the River Lee to witness regeneration; sketch key London landmarks, climb the Orbit; ride the Olympic BMX track and attend sporting events at the Copperbox. Consequently pupils’ attendance is up (from 93.1 per cent in Special Measures to 96.4 per cent last year) – they don’t want to miss a day. Only 22 per cent of FSM pupils go to University, which is why the Broadford University programme is so important. Having the chance to study a range of degree courses in pottery, Polish, music, and writing contributed towards changing pupil attitudes. The partnership with the Brilliant Club has seen pupils attend Russell Group Universities and acquire a taste for further education. Consequently 90 per cent agreed they would like attempt a degree and 100 per cent of parents stated it had raised their aspirations.   In 2016, reading was further improved with book clubs and reading leagues. Consequently the proportion of disadvantaged KS2 pupils attaining the expected standard in reading was above national figures. Broadford’s high expectations are now sweeping through the local area; this is clearly demonstrated through the Learning Federation formed with Mead Primary. This collaboration has seen Mead’s results reach new heights – from bottom 20 per cent to top five per cent between 2015 & 2016. Nationally recognised as a Teaching School and RWI model school in 2016, Broadford has now been awarded funding for an Early Years project through the Strategic School Improvement Fund. Continuous staff development, an inspirational curriculum, and the opportunity to work with more schools, has lead Broadford to win TES’s Primary School of the Year.




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Education Business chats to RIBA’s Caroline Buckingham about the importance of good design when developing new school buildings and what should be done to tackle the pupil place shortage What makes a good school building? A good school is driven by it’s educational vision and ethos. The role of school buildings, whether new or partly refurbished, can facilitate this vision. In school design there are many common parts, teaching spaces, staff spaces, and large spaces. However one size does not fit all. The school building needs

to function, eliminating challenges such as cramped spaces, lack of natural light, and bad acoustics. What’s more, school buildings should relate to their surrounding community, each offering its unique set of challenges and opportunities. What impact does a good school building have on pupils and staff? Having space and natural light should be an absolute given in a school building. It should be welcoming and uplifting, providing a sense of ownership and pride for pupils and staff.

Cont investminual the sch ent in will hel ool estate p a good to provide mainte level of ensure nance and sc fit for p hools are urpose

Ysgol Bae Baglan school. James Morris


Design & Build

What makes a good school building?

Research has been carried out over the years on the impact of well designed buildings and it’s proved hard to measure, in terms of its impact on educational attainment, low pupil truancy, better staff retention and productivity, or perhaps a combination of all these factors. The research carried out by the RIBA, Better spaces for Learning, helps define and quantify the value of good school design. It is common sense; the environment you are in does have a massive impact on how you feel. What are the strengths and weaknesses of the government’s school building programme? Through Building Schools for the Future (BSF) and Priority Schools Building Programme (PSBP), money has been invested in the educational school estate, however due to the lack of investment for years, this has focused on the backlog maintenance required across the whole school estate, alongside pupil place needs. The recent challenges were in the primary schools with a lack of pupil places to meet the demand. This is now being reflected with a shortage in secondary school places. For each Local Authority it can be hard to predict demand especially when needing to plan five years ahead, and any construction process takes a similar amount of time to deliver the expansion needed. The current government programme has been to provide choice for parents with more schools moving towards Academy status, the creation of Free Schools with a definitive education vision and creation of vocationally led schools like the University Technical Colleges (UTC). The challenge is to provide a school estate that is sustainable long term. Short‑term solutions where quality E


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 is compromised due to quick and cheap decisions will build up problems for the future. What should the government do to improve its school estate? Continual investment in the school estate is required to provide a good level of maintenance and to make sure all schools are fit for purpose. There is no reason to still have crumbling and overcrowded facilities. Investment is required in the longer term where it may be more expensive to achieve the quality initially, however over the years the school estate will be more robust and sustainable, with lower running costs. We are fairly traditional in the way we think of how a school should be and the facilities they offer. Having great facilities that are open

for a short time in the day and shut for 14 weeks in the year doesn’t make good sense. Lack of external areas for play and sports can be challenging, however having a more joined up approach including sharing of facilities with other schools, the community and universities would result in overall better quality offering with a longer term plan for management and maintenance.      How important is the design stage in getting the school building right? The most critical part in school design – and it should be the very first priority – is having the educational vision set down, whether it’s for a large new school or small expansion to an existing school. E

Caroline Buckingham, Vice President Practice & Profession, RIBA

Ysgol Bae Baglan. James Morris

The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has announced that students enrolling in RIBA Part 1 and Part 2 courses in September 2018 will be able to apply for the highest amount of money the Institute has offered in its history. Architecture students who currently face financial hardship can apply to the new RIBA Student Support Fund, a scheme devised to assist applicants with up to £3,000 per academic year in one-off payments, depending on their individual financial situation. The Institute has also unveiled the new RIBA Part 1 Bursaries, aimed at supporting students currently enrolled in the first year of Part 1 in the UK by giving them £1,000 per term in their second and third years. The aim of these bursaries is to provide long-term financial support to architecture students who demonstrate talent and commitment to their studies and are struggling to cover the costs of living and course-related expenditure. The scheme builds on the success of the existing RIBA Part 2 Bursaries that support students with £6,000 grants paid termly in the first and second years of their UK Part 2. Since their introduction in 2015, the RIBA has awarded a total of £108,000 to 18 students. This year, and thanks to generous donations from the Ayyub Malik Trust, the bequest of Walter J Parker, the Rosenberg Memorial Fund, and individual donations by RIBA members, the Institute is awarding 12 bursaries (four Part 1 Bursaries and eight Part 2 bursaries) worth £72,000. RIBA President Ben Derbyshire said: “I am delighted that the Institute is able to support more architecture students than ever before with a record amount of money generously donated by individuals, and trusts and foundations. I feel proud to have raised money for the fund and encourage other individuals and practices to support where possible. These schemes are critical to ensure students of architecture make the most of their studies without the burden of financial pressures, and to widen the participation of a diverse student body across all stages of architectural education.” Together with other regular annual funds that support students at Part 1 and Part 2, these three new schemes will allow the Institute to allocate £220,000 towards assisting students during the 2018/19 academic year.


Design & Build

There is no reason to still have crumbling and overcrowded facilities. Investment is required in the longer term where it may be more expensive to achieve the quality initially, however over the years the school estate will be more robust and sustainable, with lower running costs

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 Understanding how the school functions, how many pupils it has and how they arrive is vital. Questions at the outset whether the design is looking at a small element or whole school and whether there a wider masterplan. The design brief can then translate this vision into spaces and be used as a working document throughout the design stage, construction stage and when the building is in-use. After a school goes through the process of design and construction the feedback is an essential part which often gets overlooked. Referred to as Post Occupancy Evaluation (POE), the evidence gathered should be used to assist to help improve the next generation of learning facilities. How can a well-designed and constructed school building impact on running and maintenance costs? If the principles of longer term management and running of the school buildings are considered at the design brief stage, then for a small initial investment, this will have a great long term impact. It can be very simple considerations in the design stage such as the orientation of spaces in the building to avoid overheating and glare from sunlight or specifying materials that may be more expensive initially such as floor finishes, however they last 20 years rather than two years. In a drive towards making one size fit all, new school buildings often ended up with over complicated services being fitted with complex and expensive mechanical and electrical equipment that would not be needed if the right design solutions had been adopted. The cost of the up-keep of these systems can be enormous and the failure to

£514 million has been announced to expand or improve the condition of school buildings across the country, in order to create more good school places. The £514 million is being allocated as part of the Condition Improvement Fund. It will support 1,556 projects across almost 1,300 academies and sixth-form colleges in England to help improve the condition or expand their facilities. The announcement includes £38 million for projects supported by the Healthy Pupils Capital Fund, which is drawn from the Soft Drinks Industry Levy. This fund helps to improve children and young people’s physical and mental health by enhancing the quality of, and access to, facilities such as changing rooms, playgrounds, kitchens and sports halls. Minister for the School System, Lord Agnew, said: “All children deserve the best possible education and state

do so has left some schools struggling with buildings that are simply not up to standard. What should the government do to tackle the pupil‑place shortage? As pupil numbers grow and budgets become tighter, it is perhaps time for a rethink on how to accommodate more pupils. Technology has changed and people’s attitude to their work place has become far more flexible and diverse, however this hasn’t really been reflected in schools. The real pressure for school expansion is in urban areas where the school sites are

of the art facilities are a big part of that. This funding will transform the condition of school buildings and help our best schools to expand, creating more good school places for families and raising standards for pupils. This will build on the hard work of teachers and our reforms, which have resulted in 1.9 million more children being taught in good or outstanding schools than in 2010.” The Condition Improvement Fund is an annual funding allocation that academies and sixth-form colleges are invited to bid for. In addition to improving the quality of school facilities, the fund also enables Good or Outstanding schools to expand where there is a need for them to do so.

Design & Build

£514 million to create more school places

already overcrowded and additional land is expensive to acquire. In London 69 per cent of schools are over subscribed. School places could be increased by lengthening the school day, opening longer over the year, having variety for teachers and creative ‘term’ planning. Sharing of facilities with surrounding users in the leisure, sports and community would lead not only to having access to the best quality spaces but also greater long term sustainable efficiency. L FURTHER INFORMATION

Ysgol Bae Baglan. Jones Millbank



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Why Risk It? Remove the risk of fire during roof refurbishments With warmer weather just around the corner, we hope now is the perfect time to think about any roofing works that may be required for your institution. But with safety, particularly fire safety, at the top of everyone’s agenda, how do you ensure that your next project places the welfare of staff, students and construction workers first, while protecting precious buildings and assets Whether the current roof is allowing water into the building, causing damage, or an upgrade is due to enhance thermal performance and reduce energy bills, choosing to embark on a roof refurbishment can have very positive results. From a new build perspective, high performance roofing is a key element to consider when designing a school fit for the future. Fortunately, recent schemes such as the Priority School Building Programme and other funding streams have meant that many more establishments can benefit from increased energy efficiency, whether it be a refurbishment or new building. A number of roofing systems are installed using gas fuelled torches. Known as ‘naked flame’ or ‘hot works’ installation, this type of work can be hugely risky if not undertaken correctly. Sadly, there have been a spate of devastating fires at schools and other sites across the UK over the past few years caused by roofing works, which have led many to question the safety of this type of project. However, these fires may have been prevented if the correct installation techniques and safety guidelines had been adhered to. Roof fires not only cause potential harm to those on site, they also wreak havoc on the premises and adjacent buildings, destroying property, which in turn disrupts the school term. Not to mention the water damage caused by putting the fire out. Pupils and staff may have to deal with a complete closure or having their lessons relocated, which not only has a huge impact on learning outcomes, but also causes massive emotional stress. Add to this the costs associated with finding a temporary building for the school to continue operating. Loss of school work, books and data is a further concern, especially for those that have paper records and haven’t got an electronic back up. Risks and prevention Due to these risks and the devastation fires can cause, the government’s published advice

to schools is clear, “any construction activity involving hot works has the potential to cause a serious fire, therefore they should only be undertaken when all other options have been considered first”. In other words, if there is a roof covering that fits the bill and doesn’t use naked flame installation, it is always best to specify that system instead. It is important to be aware that the responsibility for controlling this risk is shared by the school and the contractor under section 2 and 3 of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974. In addition, an update to the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations (CDM 2015), places new obligations on clients and facilities managers, who must now ensure the competency of those working on the project, especially when it comes to health and safety. More than ever, clients need to trust in the expertise of the team they hire to carry out any construction work, so they don’t get caught out. Working with trusted suppliers is key, so look out for manufacturers that have a list of fully trained registered contractors. Once you have a basic knowledge about roofing products and how they are installed, you may be able to remove the risk of fire during a roof refurbishment. Customer satisfaction Fortunately the roofing industry has introduced a number of new and safer alternatives, giving customers a much wider and safer choice. One such product is single ply membrane, which offers the same level of, or in many cases, improved waterproofing durability as more traditional roofing products, while still being fast to install and cost effective – especially when you consider whole life cost. Rather than using a naked flame, the single ply membrane itself is attached using adhesives or mechanical fastenings with laps sealed using a hot air welding tool. For example, roofing manufacturer Sika Sarnafil offers a range of durable single ply membranes

that are always installed by fully trained operatives, through 20-40mm nozzles directed accurately and onto no‑combustible substrates – a much safer option. However, despite many cold applied solutions now being available, such as mechanically fastened or self-adhesive products, there may still be instances where some minimal hot works might be needed for certain elements, such as installing certain vapour control layers or for drying off areas of the roof. If required, these should be limited and carried out by competent contractors, all as per regulatory procedures and the ‘Safe2Torch’ guidelines. Launched by the National Federation of Roofing Contractors, Safe2Torch is a campaign that contractors and manufacturers can sign-up to and aims to significantly reduce the risk of roof fires when using gas torches. There are also a new generation of non-flame e-heaters or dryers are becoming available, driven by the need for safer works. These should be embraced and promoted by the industry, and will likely become very popular. For added peace of mind, Sika Sarnafil can guide you through the entire project with its total support services, from new build to refurbishment. Schools benefit from a full survey of the existing roof, guidance on specification of the best system to suit the project, along with frequent site inspections and a single-point guarantee. So, before commencing your next roof refurbishment project, ensure you appoint a competent team – including manufacturer and contractor – that puts health and safety first. Never underestimate the importance of choosing the right product for the job, especially when there are now plenty of high performance alternatives to those that require naked flame application. In this day and age, there’s no need to risk a fire and the devastation that follows. L FURTHER INFORMATION Tel: 01707 358500 @SikaSarnafilUK


The RIBA Regional Awards celebrate outstanding architecture across the UK and several schools have been shortlisted for their excellent architecture and design. Education Business reports The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) holds annual awards to champion and celebrate the best architecture in the UK and around the world, whatever the budget, form or size. Successful projects reflect changes and innovations in architecture, but at their core display a commitment to designing and developing buildings and spaces for the improvement and enhancement of people’s lives. RIBA has unveiled the shortlist for its Regional Awards, and once again, several schools have been noted for their excellent has architecture and design. Architectural excellence Ysgol Bae Baglan in Port Talbot has been nominated for a Royal Society

of Architects in Wales (RSAW) award. The school building, designed by Stride Treglown, reflects the character of the rolling hills from its backdrop, so that landscape and building are designed as one. The school is located away from the noisy road to ensure that all classrooms can be naturally ventilated. The three teaching wings are linked to a large space where all pupils can meet and entertain. Construction is based on a steel frame, with a varied external cladding featuring brickwork at ground, highly insulated render, and composite RIBA panels at high level. Outside, the sheltered unveile courtyard has coloured d the sho glazed panels creating a its Regi rtlist for peaceful representation o and sev nal Awards of wild meadow eral sch flowers. Clever have be ools wayfinding is utilised e n noted for thei throughout so that

architecr excellent ture design and

Capital excellence In the running for a RIBA London award, Hawley School in Camden is a single‑form entry school for 236 pupils, arranged around a central courtyard. Designed by Allford Hall Monaghan Morris, the three‑storey building correlates with students’ progression through learning and at the same time creates a series of external, year group‑specific learning terraces distributed across the various rooftop planes. The exterior is both protective and playful, designed to allow views out and glimpses in. The scheme’s U-shaped plan furthers this sense of protectiveness by creating a shared outdoor space and double-height cloister structure that provides a focal point for both the school and larger masterplan. To contrast with the building’s solid brick outer façades, these inner elements are primarily timber. Throughout the scheme, low carbon design is prioritised. Also shortlisted for a RIBA London award, the new Inverton building for Ivydale School, designed by Hawkins/ Brown architects, has been designed so that it compliments the existing Victorian building and feels part of one school. Internally, the layout is a simple square arrangement, with staff and administrative spaces located to the front of the building, offering a view to the street that connects the two schools. Classrooms are located on opposite sides with a central double height atrium and hall, providing the school with flexible performance spaces E

Design & Build

Schools with architectural brilliance

all pupils can enjoy multisensory changes of sound, lighting levels, colours and textures as they move about the school.

Hawley Primary School (Credit: Timothy Soar)



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Design & Build

Ivydale Primary School (Credit: Jack Hobhouse)

 in line with their arts specialism. These spaces feature exposed Cross Laminated Timber (CLT) and glulam structure, providing children with a visible understanding of the building structure, as well as adding to the calming atmosphere. The School’s passion for the arts is also reflected in the tiered seating in the landscape amongst other external spaces such as the Forest Garden and Kitchen Garden. Down south Eastleigh College, designed by ArchitecturePLB, has been shortlisted for RIBA South award. A new Creative Skills Centre was developed in close consultation with college staff. The building is formed of brick and copper with perforated solar shading to the southern façade, creating new teaching facilities. This includes a new Hair & Beauty facility, which will be aligned with a commercial salon and opened to the general public. Internally, the building provides a flexible set of spaces which can accommodate the facilities, and which could be adapted to different uses in the future. Designed to provide a new, welcoming ‘face’ for the college, the main entrance has been remodelled to include external social spaces and improve connections to the new building, all enclosed by a bespoke boundary fence incorporating signage and artwork. A new Advanced Technology Centre meanwhile sits adjacent to a landscaped courtyard, which serves as an important circulation space for the college, engages the department with the wider college. West House at Stowe School, designed by MICA Architects, is also up for a RIBA South award. The new building provides en-suite study bedrooms for

West House, Stow (Credit: Richard Chivers)

The winners of the regional awards will be announced in the next couple of months. Winners will then be considered for a RIBA National Award later in the year 24 students, with living facilities, common rooms and garden and terraces, whilst complementing the three adjacent brick houses designed by Fielding Dodd in 1935. The winners of the regional awards will be announced in the next couple of months.

Winners will then be considered for a RIBA National Award later in the year. L FURTHER INFORMATION



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A new school of thought for FM Services At a time of increased expectations and demands on education sector budgets, schools and academies need an efficient and trustworthy partner when it comes to managing their facilities Norse, one of the UK’s most dynamic and fast-growing facilities management providers, is dedicated to partnership working with the education sector, offering the experience and stability so vital in times of economic pressure. Established in 1988, Norse helps to ease the financial strain in over a thousand education establishments through efficiency savings, saving their clients money year after year. And it’s now a fast-growing market for the £200 million turnover company. In the first six months of the current financial year, Norse and its local authority partnership companies have won over 100 new education sector contracts, worth almost £5 million a year. The sector now accounts for almost £40 million, or 20 per cent, of Norse’s annual turnover. Safe pair of hands Operating from a network of local offices and depots across the UK, Norse is today recognised by the education sector as a safe pair of hands; a reputation clearly justified and evidenced by the group’s 96 per cent client satisfaction and high business and staff retention, all well above


the national averages for the industry. The group is unique in the wide range of services it provides to the educational sector: cleaning; catering; building and grounds maintenance; property services such as feasibility studies; design; planning and building control applications; project management and compliance, environmental services; recycling and waste management; security and school transport and vehicle maintenance. Sales director Geoff Tucker says that this comprehensive range of services, combined with its public-sector ethos and record of high quality service delivery, make it very attractive as a facilities management partner to the education sector. “We pride ourselves on developing long-term relationships with schools and academies,” he says. “Our average association with clients is over nine years, a clear indicator of the trust and satisfaction that they have with us. By working with Norse, schools and academies have access to the pooled experience of specialists in all aspects of managing educational facilities.”

Schools and academies benefit from the added value of a trusted, financially secure and sustainable partner committed to delivering a first class service. Through careful financial management, and a selective, organic approach to business development and growth, Norse ensures long‑term stability for its 9,500 directly‑employed staff and its UK-wide client portfolio. The group is also a strong believer in the importance of adding corporate social value to its commercial propositions. Investing in education sector clients Norse regularly reinvests in its education sector clients through everything from sponsoring sports teams’ kits to providing new dining furniture, as well as a long-established policy of providing locally-based employment and using local suppliers wherever possible. In an industry that is not widely renowned for innovation, Norse offers a refreshing alternative. Investment in technology such as web-based maintenance scheduling, operations management software and hand‑held personal digital devices for job recording, the use of biodegradable cleaning chemicals and environmentally efficient equipment are just some examples of the group’s commitment to efficient, client-focused service. By taking on responsibility for managing a comprehensive package of facility operations, or just a single service, Norse allows a school or academy to concentrate on delivering education to the young people they both serve. For those wanting to know more about the Norse approach to partnership‑based, cost effective services provision, the company will be on Stand 28 at the NASBM show in November. L FURTHER INFORMATION


The Welsh education secretary has announced that £14 million has been set aside for repairing and maintaining schools in Wales. Local authorities will receive the funding first, which will then be distributed to schools across Wales. It will be spent on areas such as boilers and plumbing works to school toilets, caretaker costs, painting and decorating, and plastering and replacing or repairing flooring. This will complement work to improve Welsh School Buildings through the Welsh Government’s 21st Century Schools and Education Programme. Commenting on the new funding, education secretary, Kirsty Williams

said that it will “address small scale maintenance costs” to alleviate pressures on school budgets, and that all schools across Wale will benefit from the cash. She said: “I hear it often enough, from teachers and headteachers across the country, that time and funding is too often taken up by school maintenance issues, as opposed to supporting learners. I hope local authorities are now able to transfer this money

across to schools as quickly as possible so that essential work can begin.” 21st Century Schools The 21st Century Schools and Education Programme is a long-term strategic investment programme, which ensures that funding resources are “focused on the right schools and colleges in the right places”. The delivery of the first investment phase continuing until March 2019, will see a £1.4 billion investment in education throughout 22 local authority areas in Wales. It E

Written by Andrea Pluck

Schools in Wales are set to benefit from a £14 million cash pot that will be used to carry out small scale repairs and maintenance. This will complement work that is already being carried out by the Welsh Government’s 21st Century Schools and Education Programme

Facilities Management

Improving school buildings in Wales

£14m wil spent ol be such as n areas b plumbi oilers and to schong works and pa ol toilets inti decoratng and ing


Case Study

General Data Potection Regulation – Getting the best support for your school General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) comes into force on 25 May 2018, delivering the biggest changes in data protection legislation in 20 years. To continue its leading support of schools, academies and MATs, Strictly Education and partners have developed a range of services and products to help education establishments manage their GDPR compliance. The new support solutions for GDPR includes: GDPR Audit – Strictly Education will visit your school or academy to help complete an audit on your data security processes. A thorough review will be completed on-site as part of the visit. GDPR Overview – Training will offer courses best suited to schools’ data protection officers. This training forms a highly valuable 5.5 hour session that will be delivered on‑site by Strictly Education’s legal partners. GDPR Management Software will help manage your GDPR information in one central system, in your own school with a platform that can store documents, policies and training guidance. Provided by a key software developing partner of Strictly Education, benefits include administering

staff questionnaires and internal audits; a suppliers list with data access information; a GDPR data map; recording and managing breaches centrally; and one portal that covers multiple sites – ideal for MATs. Strictly Education will also offer the GDPR Helpline for data protection officers in schools, academies and multi academy trusts in need of support and advice following a data security breach. The GDPR helpline provides 10 hours of telephone advice per annum; general advice on GDPR; advice on breaches and subject access requests; and discounted rates for written advice or document reviews. Strictly Education will also offer the

Enhanced DPO Service. It includes all the benefits of the GDPR Helpline, plus a specially developed GDPR toolkit which includes guidance on the change to the law; GDPR policy which addresses school-specific issues; privacy notices for key stakeholders; library and ‘how to use’ template letters; and a data breach response plan. To find out more about GDPR support and to discuss the best solutions for your school, academy or MAT and request a quote, contact Strictly Education today. FURTHER INFORMATION

MATs & Academies

Payroll & Finance



School Effectiveness

SIMS & Technology



 will result in the rebuild and refurbishment of over 150 schools and colleges. The first investment phase will focus on the reduction of poor condition school buildings; promoting sustainability through reducing recurrent costs, energy consumption and carbon emissions; and the reduction of running costs to “maximise resources available to target improvements to learner outcomes”. In addition, it will focus on the provision of the “right number of places in the right places to serve local pupil demand by reducing surplus capacity,” and addressing specific Welsh medium and faith-based provision needs. Band A and B A second wave of investment is already in motion and will begin in April 2019. It will focus on the expansion of schools and colleges in areas of increased demand for educational services. In addition to this, it will look at addressing growth in demand for Welsh medium education; reducing surplus capacity and inefficiency in the system; and making assets available for community use to optimise the infrastructure and resources for public services/. Band A has benefited from collaborative working with delivery partners such as the Welsh Government, local authorities, further

education institutions and CollegesWales. This will continue through Band B. Applying for funding Local authorities and further education and higher education institutions can apply for funding as part of the programme by submitting Business Cases. Funding for the programme is provided by delivery partners and Welsh government. The business cases will provide the Welsh Government with evidence to support decision making within each project and assurance both for the government and delivery partners on value for money. The first stage of the submission process is to submit a Strategic Outline Programme (SOP). It will need to set out key projects, funding streams and “critical delivery path for the overarching investment programme”. Following approval, delivery partners will then be required to submit individual Business Justification or Full Business Cases. As it stands, all delivery partners have submitted proposals for the Band B investment.

Projects Schools across Wales have benefited from the funding, since it was established in the 1960s, such as Nant Celyn Primary School, Torfaen. The school is a £7 million, 420place school development which opened in 2010. The single storey community primary school has a modern 21st Century building and all classrooms are equipped with interactive whiteboards. Most pupils also have access to laptops and there are video conferencing facilities to allow lessons to be shared with other schools. Another project includes the redevelopment of Cowbridge Comprehensive School. The redevelopment has seen the school be provided with the facilities required for “educational delivery in the 21st Century”. It offers equipped laboratories, a sports hall and fitness studio and flexible learning spaces. In addition to this, through 21st Century Schools, Rogiet Primary School in Monmouthshire opened its doors to its new building. Due to its location near motorways and a railway, design has ensured that noise does not distract pupils inside the school building. Careful consideration has also been given to the interior of the school, so that noise from corridors and neighbouring classrooms does not carry through to other areas of the school. As a result, the school is able to accommodate pupils with a hearing loss. Commenting on the redevelopment, Kathryn Evans, headteacher, said: “There was an echo in the old school building and you could always hear the hum of the motorway outside, but there’s nothing like that now. Our new building is very quiet, and it’s had a big impact on the children – they are so calm. “The reduced background noise means that it is much easier for children – whether they are in the classrooms, our group rooms, or in the library – to focus on their lessons and work without any distractions.” For further information or to apply for funding, see below. L

Facilities Management

Local authorities, further education and higher education institutions can apply for funding as part of the programme by submitting Business Cases. Funding for the programme is provided by delivery partners and the Welsh government




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Ceda is the trade association representing design, supply and engineering companies in the catering equipment industry. We asked our members, who work with schools and educational establishments throughout the UK, what developments there had been in the school catering industry. We were particularly interested in any new products or techniques that are available and how schools with limited space can still serve up healthy, nutritious meals. “Schools are still investing in their kitchens. However, as always, budgets are tight and maximising any spend is vitally important for schools and their contract caterers,” commented Michael Sinclair, design director of Catering Design Group. “Schools and caterers are looking to gain the most from their investment in equipment – flexibility is key to this. We’re seeing a continued increase in combi ovens and technology that gives the ability to produce a wide variety of menu options.”

Finding the space Fundamentally the key issue that faces every new-build school is space, as they are now typically built by area to control cost; this method has an immediate impact on the catering facilities, particularly in those schools moving from much larger, traditional buildings. “This challenge must be met by the scheme designers, but also by the schools’ catering teams from an operational mind set,” commented Andy Brown, business development director of Garners Food Service Equipment. “It is vital to exploit every bit of space available. Equipment manufacturers have listened to feedback and in recent years have made moves to provide multi-use equipment such as combination ovens that can be stacked, in turn providing a greater product yield from a smaller footprint.” A well-designed kitchen will reduce operating costs, whilst maximising

A wel kitchen l‑designed w operati ill reduce whilst mng costs, energy aximising ef and speficiencies ed service of

Getting it right Michael Sinclair believes there are crucial things to bear in mind in order to get your school kitchen E

Written by the Catering Equipment Distributors Association (ceda)

How can schools maximise the full potential of their kitchens to deliver healthy, nutritious meals? Catering equipment trade association, ceda, gets some industry views

Catering Equipment

Getting the most from your kitchen

energy efficiencies and increasing speed of service. The selection of equipment is absolutely critical to this. Going hand-in-hand with the increase in advance bulk-cooking, the demand for high‑quality hot holding areas and flexible prep stations has also increased, to ensure no loss of quality to the food through the more time and space-efficient cooking process. However, Garners Food Service Equipment believe one of the most important elements is servery design. To ensure that the ever-growing number of diners can be maintained and supported, typically the hot, main dinner offers are kept local to the kitchen environment, with satellite grab-and-go islands positioned in and around the dining areas to relieve pressure from the main counter. This style of servery contributes to a much more diverse and flexible menu than that of the single-servery, queue-and-collect design. The pressure faced to deliver quality catering within the education sector won’t change for some years and the market is reliant on the ability of equipment manufacturers to continue their development of high‑quality, flexible and space-saving items that in turn enables caterers to deliver a high-quality product.

Catering Design Group: GP Millfield


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Catering Equipment

Going hand-in-hand with the increase in advance bulk‑cooking, the demand for high-quality hot holding areas and flexible prep stations has also increased  equipment right: “Take a step back. It is very important for a design team to really consider exactly what the caterer and school wish to achieve from the kitchen space. Practicality is key. Look at the space, consider its flexibility and how food preparation will flow. This will dictate the correct type of equipment that will work best for the space.” Michael believes that the kitchen is the engine room of every catering operation – irrespective of menu and service style. He says: “If the kitchen is unable to deliver front-of-house requirements, the quality of food and service will suffer and in turn, so will the pupil experience. “Schools should involve an expert in the design of a school catering area, as they will have proven knowledge and expertise to deliver an efficient and cost-effective dining operation. Expert knowledge of the right equipment is key to ensuring maximum operational flexibility. Although it may seem like an additional expense it really is fundamental to maximising the budget without comprising on quality.” Michael also believes that ‘flow’ is important. He explains: “Some kitchens are limited by way of space and indeed movement, so it is important that the design takes this into consideration. The key to a successful operation is ensuring both front and backof-house can work seamlessly together and are flexible – both in terms of the space and the selection of equipment. “Consider whether equipment needs to be multi-functional, which meal times it will serve at various points in the school year, from every-day lunches to event catering. Consideration should be given to the number of diners the equipment will be required to serve at any given time, menu options and speed of service. Multi-functional pieces of equipment, such as combination ovens, are often sourced to produce different elements of a menu at different times of the day.” Michael also advises that service style and menu will not only impact on the size and design of a kitchen, it is also an important consideration in the choice of equipment. “Schools should be creative with equipment choices,” adds Michael. “A reputable designer will be able to draw on experience to source alternative materials that aren’t expensive but importantly, suit a school environment, and make recommendations on the most effective but budget-friendly sources of the right equipment. “Buying random pieces of equipment just won’t work. Use expert help to achieve a complementary set of appliances. The layout and specification of equipment should be carefully considered to ensure optimum efficiency. Schools should think carefully about the specification of kitchen equipment; short-term savings over long-term energy efficiency requires a balanced approach.” Finally, Michael advises that good ventilation is key in any kitchen and this extends further than extraction canopies. Appliances such as ovens, fridges, freezers and even microwaves generate a lot of heat and all require sufficient ventilation, both to extend the life of these appliances and to create a comfortable working environment for the kitchen brigade. Expert advice Adam Mason, ceda’s director general commented: “Like every other sector of the industry, school kitchens provide their own individual and unique challenges. Ceda members have the knowledge, expertise and experience from design, project and equipment perspectives to help schools, caterers and contractors to overcome these challenges and deliver solutions on brief and budget without compromising performance and output.” L

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But those benefits are undermined if the xoxoxoxo switch to a cashless system becomes a major hassle, or if the operation requires constant maintenance. FURTHER INFORMATION BioStore understands that its FasTrak xxx Cashless Catering solution has to be more than simply a product a school acquires – it has to be a service. When schools choose a cashless system, they should be choosing a supplier that’s in it for the long run. It’s important not only to help schools quickly set-up their new cashless systems, but also to help them operate the new system smoothly. Creating unique solutions for unique situations No two schools are exactly the same – they all have their different peculiarities, schedules and requirements. So, when a school chooses to go cashless, it will have slightly different, specific requirements compared to neighbouring schools. One out-of-the-box solution is not going to work for every school. That’s why the first thing we do as a supplier of cashless solutions, is listen. It is important to take the time to really understand the school’s issues, operations and desired outcomes for switching to a cashless catering solution. From that starting point, our experts can advise on the best approach and collaborate with the school to deliver the most ideal solution. James Ramsden at the Ruth Gorse Academy, put it like this: “After approaching several different companies about the school’s desired solution, BioStore was the only one flexible enough, able enough, and willing enough, to collaborate on and deliver our idea.” Putting in the hours Once the right approach is agreed with a school, there’s no time to waste. Schools need solutions that can be implemented with as little disruption to their timetable as possible. It is important that a cashless catering system is flexible enough to easily integrate with a wide range of school Management Information Systems and with popular online payment systems. After the system has been integrated, it’s then important to be on hand to help the smooth operation, whether by training staff to

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Going cashless at a school brings all kinds of benefits to staff, parents and the students themselves. You can speed-up and improve operations as well as increase safety on the school site by effectively removing cash from the premises – even from the school canteen and vending machines

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Go cashless 800 WORD EDIT smoothly HEADLINE and painlessly HERE to bring AS TIGHTallAS benefits round POSS “After approaching several different companies about the school’s desired solution, BioStore was the only one flexible enough, able enough, and willing enough, to collaborate on and deliver our idea” James Ramsden, The Ruth Gorse Academy use new technology, quickly troubleshooting an issue, or even providing a hosted and managed cloud network for the system. At the Marlborough school, Suzanne Berry said she found it very easy to work with BioStore: “You get a service completely catered to your needs. You get the support you need through every stage of the process and you get top of the range technological solutions.” Cutting admin and increasing uptake Cashless systems really drive speed and efficiency in school catering solutions. With cashless solutions, you get faster throughput, meaning you can serve more students and increase sales. The Ruth Gorse academy for example managed to get 90 per cent of students signed up for cashless catering – and the Marlborough school increased its uptake of catering by more than 25 per cent. Removing cash-based payments also cuts admin time and reduces risk for the school’s finance team. With everything on a digital system that is tracked, kitchen managers and financial staff can work together to improve budgeting. Piece of mind for parents In addition, going cashless is a lot easier for parents. It makes paying for school meals much more efficient and convenient through easy-to-use online payment systems. By creating a cashless solution, schools also offer parents some peace of mind. When parents simply give children school lunch money, they can’t guarantee it will actually be spent in the school canteen. Too often, that money goes to the local

fast-food outlet on the way home. With a cashless solution, parents don’t need to give their children money every day. Parents can also login online anytime to see how their money is being spent on the school’s hopefully healthy catering. Get students eating a healthy meal daily Like everything in education though, the real reason to go cashless, is because it’s what’s best for the students. Good healthy daily meals from school catering services are ultimately there to help students grow physically and academically. A healthy hot meal gives students the energy to concentrate throughout the school day – and the fuel they need to grow healthily. Lunchtime should also be a time to interact and develop socially with their friends while sharing a meal. When catering is seen as slow, inefficient, and uses money that can be spent elsewhere, then students will skip it – because nobody wants to waste their lunch break standing in a long queue. Going cashless is the best way to banish the queues and deliver fast, value-for-money catering. L FURTHER INFORMATION



Cashless Schools Written by Cleo Fatoorehchi, communications coordinator, British Educational Suppliers Association (BESA)

The trend of going cashless Going cashless can help schools save money by streamlining their payment processes, but it has also become an way of strengthening parental communications and engagement in their children’s life at school. Cleo Fatoorehchi explores further Schools have been facing a severe funding crisis over the past few years. The latest research commissioned by the British Educational Suppliers Association (BESA) found that 41 per cent of schools – across the primary and secondary sectors – are indicating contraction in their resource budgets over the coming year. In this context of budget uncertainty, going cashless can help schools save money by streamlining their payment processes – whether it is to pay for school meals, school trips or any other transaction between the school and parents. Anthony Bennett, head of sales at Eduspot, told BESA: “Having an online payment system can result in time and money being saved in school and processes becoming more efficient.” Eduspot, a BESA member, provides schools with a cashless catering solution called SchoolMoney, among other products. SchoolMoney’s price plan allows for unlimited transactions without any transaction or service fees, which “allows schools to budget for the year and be as flexible as they wish when parents pay online without the worry of any additional fees for the school or parent,” Bennett said. At Manley Village School, SchoolMoney has “reduced the time spent counting money and freed my time for other work,” the Business School Manager Gillian Harrison said. Lorraine from Brooke Voluntary Controlled Church of England Primary School also recognised that the cashless system led to more efficiency in the school: “The office staff can now do their allocated hours without claiming overtime,” she said. “We have cut down on wasted hours on collecting money, counting it and banking it, and parents have become more efficient and reliable at booking meals in advance which means less wastage for our onsite kitchen.”

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Going cashless to avoid the challenges of cash transactions Schools without an online payment system have to manually record payments made for trips and dinners, followed by manually


counting cash which also needs to be banked, often by a member of the admin team. Rhea Jarvis, business development manager at Eduspot, told BESA that this system was both extremely time-consuming – for both the parents and admin staff in school – and not very secure. “Manually tracked information does not allow for accurate reporting on money received and can also be difficult to track student grants or pupil premium reductions for things such as trips,” Jarvis said. “Manual systems paper-based or electronic spreadsheets allow for many areas of human error and are without a complete audit trail.” Instead, an online payment system will record any transactions made by parents and will clearly show in school any payments made, credits accrued or debts that need to be paid. “Online payments result in a more secure streamlined approach to money transactions,” Jarvis commented. Besides being a more secure way of receiving payments, an online payment system also has the added benefit of no cash in school, which is a security risk alone. Moreover, online payment solutions offer parents the chance to pay cash if needed, through the PayPoint facility. There are 29,000 PayPoint outlets in the UK, located in supermarkets, newsagents or Post Offices, so it is a convenient alternative for families with no online banking. Parental engagement Once a payment is received online or a cash payment in school, the SchoolMoney system automatically sends a receipt of payment directly to the parent. This creates a much more secure way of managing money transactions in school, and the parents and school have a log of everything paid or not paid. Jarvis explained: “SchoolMoney has a parental engagement facility built in which allows text and emails to be generated at the click of a button to request payment from parents and also remind them of any overdue payments.” She added: “This saves a lot of man-hours and grief for the


schools and offers reports to show all messages are received by parents. Chasing payments can often become a negative situation if having to be done face to face. SchoolMoney eradicates this and allows the relevant information to be sent to a parent direct. It creates a secure environment which allows parents to pay from the comfort of their own home and allows the school to clearly reconcile all payments in school with a complete audit trail.” Indeed, online payment solutions are not only appreciated by schools. Parents, too, are enthusiastic about them and often request that a card facility be set up at their children’s schools, if it’s not already. Bennet told BESA that in schools that do not have a card facility, the parents often leave without being able to make a payment. “At SchoolMoney, we are finding that there is a push from parents to encourage schools to offer an online facility as this is very convenient for them,” he said. For example, with SchoolMoney’s parental consent feature, the school requests parents’ consent alongside payments. This means parents have less forms to sign and clearly know what their children are about to do at school, while the school can produce a list of pupils complete with emergency contact information and medical information to take on the school trip. Parents also prefer online payments because it reduces risk. Indeed, the chances that children will buy sweets and junk food on the way to and from school, which is a strong concern when children have lunch money in their pocket every day, are far less. Likewise, with online payments children do not need to carry cash into school on public transport, so paying for school items becomes safer for them. Lastly, online payment systems often give details about the children’s lunch contents, so that parents can be involved in the child’s life at school. On the online forum for parents Mumsnet, many parents express the desire to be able to check whether their children have had a healthy school meal, and that is often possible when the schools use an automated fingerprint or card system that needs to be topped up by the parents. So, as Jarvis said, “there is absolutely a trend towards schools becoming cashless.” And we can understand why. L FURTHER INFORMATION

consumers own 1.48 debit cards per capita, xoxoxoxoit to third place in the charts. pushing As the nation goes cashless, the same goes with Schools.INFORMATION Especially due to the growing FURTHER concerns about the security of storing cash xxx on-site, more schools than ever are going cashless in 2018. Schools and caterers are also enjoying significant benefits including reduced administration time and direct cost savings. There are undeniable issues around pupils bringing cash and cheques into school to pay for school meals, trips and clubs. Cash can be spent on treats on the way to school, might provoke bullying or can be lost. For all the reasons above, inevitably, you want to become cashless. But how do you initiate the ‘‘Going Cashless’’ project at your school? Here’s a list of five steps that can help your school prepare for a cashless payments future. Think about your school and stakeholder needs You aim for a simpler, convenient way of transferring money. It is important to communicate the benefits to all the stakeholders from the start of this process. Make sure you understand the needs of the different groups and stakeholders addressing them with your cashless system. Think about the future. You will need an agile, flexible, scalable solution that can grow along with you in the future. You may currently only wish to use the system for school meals, but soon you may include school trips, uniforms or allow for print control, vending machine sales and various sales options. Create a Cost/Benefits table It is always a good idea to showcase to the school leadership team why it will be beneficial to go cashless. Create a table of costs and benefits and highlight the advantages of using a cashless solution over time, as well as the cost of managing cash and cheques. Sum up the administration cost and time your school can save. Focus on points such as the fact that administrators and library administration staff have immediate access to payment and deposit reports with cashless payments. Moreover, pinpoint the fact that you can

own situation and another school that uses cashless payments solutions to showcase in a clear way the benefits of the system.

Choose the right supplier Make the most of your investment by selecting the right supplier. Before you select a supplier ask yourself the following questions: Which methods of identification do you need to use? Card, biometrics or selection by photo? What types of hardware such as tills and printers do you want to use? What design and user views accommodate your needs? Would you prefer, for example, to see the user’s photo on screen? How user friendly is the application, menu design and reports? Does it provide other options like vending machine sales and various printing and copying options? How are free meals and bursaries managed and is it discrete? Finally, you must be aware of the supplier level of service and the cost of each cashless solution. Set targets and adjust your strategy It is important to set measurable targets early on that provide a clear overview of the benefits of the system. What is the number of students that select the school cashless catering system instead of packed lunches? How much has the intake increased and have the queues in your school canteen been reduced? Has the school catering service improved overall? Make sure your targets are realistic and achievable. Ask your suppliers for examples of successful cashless implementations and their deliverables. Remember that having specific targets will help you implement your strategies to achieve the desirable outcomes.

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As the nation goes cashless, the same goes with schools. But how do you initiate the ‘Going Cashless” project at your school? Here’s a list of the five steps that can help make your school prepare for a cashless payments future Udae nonsend icidisquid quam elisimincim facepro et et, sed quodi ut molorem nosrevenues eumque Communicate and The UK is blaborum the third most cashless society in aut ationse increase your with laboribus the online implement the plan the after Canada Sweden, which top-up, an effective way to increase spend et world, quoditiat doloandqui de volecab orerisqui nitibusdae nullacianti is key. As soon as you were found to be ahead of the trend in per pupil. Cashless meals keep spend in rest, sitiatis ut idem quodi consequat facimagnime pernatemquae Communication have agreed upon a strategy for the discarding cash. In the UK, 41 per cent of cards school and may boost revenue up to 20 nimus earibus, tem ipsaest net et implementation of your new cashless have contactless functionality, and Britishmoluptatium per cent. es Make a comparison between your

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HowWORD 800 to become EDIT a cashless HEADLINE school in five HERE easy steps AS TIGHT AS POSS

system, it is important to start designing a communication campaign focused on the different stakeholders. Describe analytically to students, parents and staff what to expect. Use emails, newsletters, SMS campaigns and parents’ evenings to raise awareness of the new cashless payments solution. To maximise the impact don’t forget that constant reminders and updates can help you increase the number of users as well as the total revenue for your school. The whole transition to cashless may last up to 12 months. In this period, with careful planning, you can maximise the benefits and significantly reduce any potential drawbacks. Synel UK develops, produces, supplies and installs computerised systems for data collection, biometric identification, electronic registration and access control applications for education. Synel UK has over 25 years of experience as a total solutions provider, offering a full range of hardware and software as well as full UK based service and support team. More than 2,000 companies and highly respected educational institutions in the UK are using Synel’s systems. The company is proud to have served City of London School, Royal Academy of Music, Bryanston School, Northampton College, Southgate College, Bryanston, London School of Business and Finance, and The Lady Eleanor Holes School, just to name a few. L FURTHER INFORMATION Tel: 0208 900 9991 Reduce queues with Synel Cashless System



26 - 27 APRIL 2018

Unmissable event for those who want to inspire students in STEM careers!




physics & engineering talks

delivered by industry experts


in Creative Technology, Maths, Natural Sciences, Robotics, Games Design, 3D Animation and Games and much more


physics app download to use whilst roaming the park - usually £1.00pp

…and enjoy OVER 30 rides and attractions after!





A trip to the South East

Written by Nigel Smith, chief executive of Tourism South East

Portsmouth Dockyard With regard to the UK’s maritime history, the south coast has no equal. At the forefront is the must-see Portsmouth Historic Dockyard. The Dockyard offers a fantastic range of education visits for groups at all levels from Foundation Stage through to Post 16. It provides experiences which cannot be created in the classroom and are designed The south coast has a wealth of military and maritime places to maximise pupils’ learning experiences, of interest for school trips, as it was often the last line of with a range of options depending on curriculum, visit time and budget. defence against would-be invaders. Nigel Smith, chief executive The Dockyard experience involves of Tourism South East, shares some school trip ideas in the area 11 different attractions including the iconic HMS Victory where students can explore Horatio Nelson’s flagship and experience The South East of England is hard to beat day to suit your curriculum needs. Students a day in the life of a sailor, taking part as a school trip destination. It’s the UK’s can learn first-hand what it was like to be a in the ‘powder monkey challenge’ and most popular region outside London for Norman charging across the battlefield during ‘learning the ropes’. Led by costumed visitors and as a result has a wealth of the battle. They can understand staff, workshops give pupils the diverse, unique and rewarding experiences how it felt to be part of the opportunity to discover what on offer. It comprises the counties of Anglo-Saxon shield wall, Studen life was like onboard for 18th Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire, or how the Norman t s century sailors. The Mary Hampshire, Isle of Wight, Sussex, Surrey cavalry helped them to can lea Rose Museum presents and Kent, all within two hours of London. victory. By standing first‑ha rn n d a unique opportunity Throughout history, the south coast has on the battlefield w hat it was l to immerse students often been the last line of defence against where history i k e Norman to be a in the Tudor world. would-be invaders so has a wealth of military was made your They can see not just and maritime places of interest. There is no students can better across t charging he batt the remains of the ship better place to learn about the importance comprehend the lefield during itself, rescued from the the Normans had on the development of events leading up to t h e B a depths of the Solent, but Britain, than the conflict that started it all. The the Battle of Hastings t t l e of Hast also the thousands of real site of the Battle of Hastings including Battle and beyond. Discover ings artefacts all dating from 1545 Abbey on the Sussex coast is a popular English what life was like for that had been preserved under Heritage site offering expert-led Discovery a Monk at the Abbey the silt for centuries, including some Visits or alternatively, you can enjoy a free and their daily routines, and not found anywhere else in the world. E self-led visit to the Abbey and design your own why it was built in this location.


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k u . o c . e p a o g t a Book or call 0845 643 9183

*Terms and conditions apply, see for more details. † Calls cost 7p per minute plus your phone company’s access charge. Participation and supervision ratios apply - please see our website.


 Dr David Starkey calls it England’s Pompeii” – one moment in time preserved for ever. Teachers can make a free preliminary visit to the Portsmouth Historic Dockyard. For schools that have made a booking, a free preliminary visit for the education visit leader plus two colleagues or a free family ticket for the education visit leader are also offered. Royal Navy Submarine Museum From Portsmouth you could take your group on a short ride across the harbour to neighbouring Gosport and explore the Waterfront Trail starting at the Royal Navy Submarine Museum. Here you can see some of the first submarines ever invented as well as go inside HMS Alliance, Britain’s only surviving Second World War ocean-going submarine. The two mile Waterfront Trail offers spectacular views across Portsmouth Harbour and takes in the Falkland Gardens and the ‘Timespace’ sundial en-route, as well as Royal Clarence Yard. At the end of the trail you will find Explosions! Museum of Naval Firepower. This award-winning museum contains weapons used by the Navy throughout the centuries and is housed in buildings of the Navy’s former armaments depot centred around the original powder magazine of 1771. Explosions! traces the development of naval armaments from gunpowder to the atom bomb to the Exocet missile. Southampton In the neighbouring coastal city of Southampton, you can find another fascinating story of maritime triumphs and disasters at the Sea City Museum. Based at the heart of Southampton, the Museum tells the story of the people of the city, their fascinating lives and historic connections with the ill fated Titanic and the sea. A dedicated team of skilled and experienced educators offers a great range of workshops and guided discovery sessions to complement museum visits. As you can imagine the story of the Titanic is core to these sessions but is presented in a child‑friendly and sensitive way particularly at Key Stage 1/2 level through getting to understand this significant disaster and life on board by dressing up, artefact‑handling and cross circular hands-on activities. The experiences are broadened out under Southampton: Gateway to the World Discovery Sessions covering why it is a gateway city, with particular focus on Roman, Saxon, Medieval, or Second World War history. The Museum has also developed new cross‑curricular bundles that provide a balance of history and art sessions incorporating a broad range of styles and learning experiences. At Secondary level students work with practicing artists, historians, and educators to take the visit to a deeper level of learning and engagement. Castles The South East also has some of the most famous Castles and Historic Houses in Britain. Our current Queen’s favourite home is Windsor Castle and it actively welcomes visits from schools and educational groups of all kinds. Students can explore the castle’s role over

the centuries as fortress, prison, baroque palace, family home, wartime refuge, heritage attraction and residence used by The Queen for official duties. Notably, the first official Royal Collection Trust iPad app Kings and Queens: 1,000 Years of British Royal History traces the royal line of succession from 1066 to the present day. To support teachers in using the app to bring alive the turbulent Stuart period for KS2 pupils there are a series of lesson plans with linked resource material. Leeds Castle in Kent is known as ‘the loveliest castle in the world’ and is proud to have been awarded the Sandford Award for Heritage Education. A day at Leeds Castle can include themed workshops and educational talks that discover almost 900 years of history, including Tudor Life and the 1920s and if you want free time for your group to let off steam there is the added bonus of a maze, magical underground grotto and playgrounds. Waddesdon Manor, in Buckinghamshire recently won the VisitEngland Best Large Attraction award and for secondary school pupils you can actually learn how it functions as a major tourist attraction looking at how visitors use the facilities, what promotional materials and techniques are used, and how the local community are employed. For primary level there are such sessions as ‘Fun with the Fairies’ literacy based workshops that link with the famous Sleeping Beauty paintings by Leon Bakst that hang in the Manor. Waddesdon also has a Teachers’ Forum to help guide the future of education at the Manor. Isle of Wight If you fancy taking your students on a real adventure then you should consider the Isle of Wight. The island is only a relatively short journey by ferry (less than an hour)

vehicle or just foot passengers, from Southampton, Portsmouth and Lymington. It is already a popular destination for educational trips with lots of accommodation that encourages a longer stay. The Isle of Wight is a small island filled with a big history. It is one of the best places in Europe to find dinosaur fossils, hence, it is known as “Dinosaur Island”. The main museum – Dinosaur Isle in Sandown – caters for students from reception class (and pre‑school) through to A-level. It provides a range of activities all year including talks and fossil handling sessions, unguided (and guided) visits and field trips; including visits to local coastal sites containing visible geology and fossils. Within the building they can often provide tailored activities, for example introductions to evolution (GCSE Biology), extinction, rocks and soils. Other popular visits on the island include several English Heritage properties including the holiday home of Queen Victoria at Osborne and Carisbrook Castle where Charles I was held prisoner. The Isle of Wight Steam Railway offers you the opportunity to make a virtual visit first by using its interactive familiarisation guide ‘Through a Teachers Eyes’. For the more adventurous the UK Sailing Academy in Cowes offers a range of different watersports that can benefit students through inspiration, enjoyment, teamwork, boosting self‑confidence and self-reliance, as well as the making and sealing of friendships. There are a number of excellent companies and organisations that can help you plan an inspirational educational or school trip to the Isle of Wight. L FURTHER INFORMATION



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Bringing the classroom to life with STEM trips to KidZania

Written by Jack Dupille, group sales manager, Kidzania London

Visit KidZania London’s STEM Fair to explore a range of unique, fun-filled learning experiences that promote STEM skills and career knowledge through amazing real-life activities Stem Learning Outcomes Here at KidZania we believe in ‘Learning by Doing’. By bringing the classroom to life in our city, we aim to boost your pupils’ curiosity and imagination through curriculum-based role-play activities. Join us at KidZania London’s STEM Fair to explore a range of unique, fun-filled learning experiences, promoting STEM skills and career knowledge through amazing real-life activities. By collaborating with educational professionals, we have enhanced the activities in our city to support the learning criteria of pupils in Key Stage 1–3 STEM subjects. Aimed at children between the ages of four and 14, KidZania’s activities blend learning with reality – successfully boosting children’s curiosity and imagination by promoting a variety of STEM skills and inspiring knowledge of careers. By collaborating with professionals, we have cleverly enhanced the activities in our city to support the learning criteria of pupils in Key Stage 1–3 with curriculum links to core school subjects. Some of the STEM topics we encourage include, animals and humans, and forces and materials. Whether your pupils are helping patients at our hospital and A&E, or at the bank depositing their hard‑earned kidZos (our currency in KidZania!) – whatever they choose, all children will be able to enjoy a focussed learning experience as they work, earn and play. Other important learning outcomes will include team work, communication and financial literacy. Teacher Facilities KidZania have provided a series of resources, lesson plans and a risk assessment guide to support teachers who are arranging school trips. These resources are based on national curriculum learning points and can be downloaded for free on our website. Teachers are encouraged to book a free planning trip ahead of their visit by emailing


our schools team on the details below. Teachers are invited to use this as the basis for their risk assessment and to ask our team about any of the activities, facilities or learning outcomes. On the day, teachers will be invited to grab a coffee and relax or work in our Adults Only lounge. Our security bracelets offer peace of mind as our attraction is enclosed and children will only be permitted to leave with their teachers.

discover the difference between states of matter, chemical & physical reactions.

Pupil Facilities As well as a city full of compelling educational activities, KidZania London provides storage for bags and coats and dedicated schools lunch spaces. Optional extras include packed lunches from £3 and class photography from only £1 per student. These can be booked in advance through our dedicated schools sales team.

Winter Term Events Our list of events throughout 2018 enhances KidZania London’s commitment to learning outcomes for students and meets the KS1–3 national curriculum across a range of subjects.

June STEM Fair Introducing KidZania London’s STEM Fair 2018. Inviting you to discover an exciting blend of all things science, technology, engineering and maths from 20 – 22 June. Across all three days of our STEM Fair there are unique STEM focussed degrees available at the KidZania National University. We aim to encourage STEM learning for all your students and support their learning criteria at school. Exciting shows at the KidZania Metropolitan Theatre in partnership with Mad Science includes Up, Up & Away: Air is...everywhere! Here we look at air and air pressure and how it affects different things around us! Why does a balloon not burst when we put a giant needle in it? And how can we make toilet roll fly? All will be revealed in this exciting and fast-paced show. Hands on workshops from Mad Science includes Reactions in Action: Our chemical reactions.It will explore the difference between chemical and physical reactions. With hands-on learning with our slime‑making activity, kids will

Partners KidZania London is proud to partner with Mad Science for our 2018 STEM Fair. Mad Science is a leading science enrichment provider who deliver unique, hands-on science experiences for children that are as entertaining as they are educational.

STEAM Week STEAM Week will be 21 September 2018 and will explore lots of careers that develop and build upon art and design skills at KidZania London. Subjects include KS1–KS3, science, maths, design and technology, PSHE, and art and design. The Business and Careers Festival The Business and Careers Festival, taking place 11 – 12 October 2018, will encourage your pupils to build their entrepreneurship skills and financial literacy through our ‘Learning by Doing’ philosophy. Subjects include KS1–3, PSHE and business. Parliament Week Parliament Week will take place 15 – 16 November, inspiring pupils to engage in democracy with exciting guest speakers Discovering more about our centuries-old institution. This is an event not to be missed. Subjects covered include KS1–3, history & PSHE. L FURTHER INFORMATION



Incorporating play into the school day The arrival of Spring brings with it the promise of better weather and longer evenings, and for many parents the chance to visit their local parks and playgrounds so their children can play, meet friends and get active. Playgrounds are so much a part of the fabric of our communities that they can often get taken for granted. Until, that is, they are no longer there. Research shows that opportunities for outdoor play are dwindling. The Association of Play Industries, whose members provide outdoor play facilities for children, has uncovered an alarming decline in playground provision across England. To obtain an accurate and up-to-date picture of local authority playground provision in England and how it is changing, we submitted Freedom of Information requests to 326 local authorities. 283 local authorities responded revealing that between 2014 and 2016, 214 playgrounds had been closed with a further 234 planned closures between 2016 and 2019. Local authorities cited lack of budget to maintain, repair or replace equipment as reasons for the closures. With no dedicated

funding for playgrounds from central government or grants from third sector institutions like the Big Lottery Fund, the provision and upkeep of play spaces falls on local authority budgets which are also being squeezed.

to enjoy outdoor play and activity. These cuts will negatively impact children of all abilities, fuelling the childhood obesity crisis as more and more children stay indoors and engage in sedentary and solitary activities on their phones and tablets. We also know that one-fifth of children experience mental illness. Evidence is mounting about the positive association between outdoor play, physical activity and mental health. The benefits of physical activity and unstructured play in good quality, well‑maintained and stimulating public playgrounds cannot be overlooked. Research from Fields in Trust shows for the first time at national level, a direct and statistically significant link between public parks and green spaces and health and wellbeing. The research establishes a link between an individual’s use of parks and green spaces and an improvement in their physical health, E

Playgro are so munds uch a part of t h e fab our com munitieric of they ca s that n o f t e n taken fo get r g r a n t e until th ey are n d – o longer t here

Play is fundamental With 448 playgrounds closed or closing, this research has uncovered a decline so steep in England’s play provision that none of us can afford to ignore it. Play is fundamental to all children – essential to their emotional, social, cognitive and physical development.  Many children do not have gardens or outside space so their local playground represents one of their few opportunities


Written by Mark Hardy, Chair, Association of Play Industries (API)

As the number of play spaces in the community declines, school playgrounds are becoming increasingly important, often representing the only opportunity some children have for outdoor play, writes Mark Hardy, chair of the Association of Play Industries (API)



 life satisfaction, sense of worth, happiness and anxiety levels. But despite this, UK parks, playgrounds and green spaces are under threat and facing an uncertain future. As the number of play spaces in the community declines, schools’ playgrounds are becoming increasingly important, often representing the only opportunity some children have for outdoor play. Schools play a vital role in encouraging children of all abilities to be active. Every school has their own unique diverse requirements and any new play area must reflect that diversity. With fewer and fewer community play spaces, it is important that schools enable children to play. With care and planning, the play opportunities that schools provide can help

to fill the gap created by local authority budget cuts to play provision. Many schools are looking to provide the best possible facilities for their pupils whatever their abilities, by improving existing playgrounds or by creating brand new outdoor spaces. The benefits to wellbeing All children are naturally hard-wired to play and it is fundamental to their development and wellbeing. If inactivity becomes the norm, increasing numbers of children of all abilities will find their lives blighted by poor mental health, obesity and social isolation. For children, play is not a luxury, it is a basic human right. Schools can play an important role in the renaissance now required in children’s

The importance of children’s play, along with getting children moving more generally, has a natural synergy with education and the mental and physical health of young people

play across the country – in opening up the physical and mental health benefits of outdoor play to children from all backgrounds. For many children living in deprived areas – who are more than twice as likely to be obese than those in more affluent areas – school and community playgrounds are often their only chance to play outdoors. Free, unsupervised play, where children develop their own games and rules, helps them to develop their creativity, imagination and problem-solving skills. Play also improves a child’s ability to focus and concentrate. Incorporating physical activity into the school day has a positive effect on their behaviour and their ability to focus for longer periods of time. The importance of children’s play, along with getting children moving more generally, has a natural synergy with education and the mental and physical health of young people. Access to safe and free areas to play is essential for a healthy and happy childhood, as fundamental as getting enough sleep and having a good diet. Children’s increasingly sedentary lifestyles will impact their health and wellbeing as well as their academic performance. How API members can help your school If you are considering creating or improving a play space but you’re not sure where to start, API members are experienced in guiding you through the process. Members of the API are the leading play companies in the UK and understand the budgetary and time constraints schools can face. The API help schools provide the very best opportunities for children to get active. The Schools Get Active Hub ( schoolsgetactive) has lots of useful advice, information and case studies from other schools who, for example, have made the most of small budgets, limited space or whose current play equipment needs replacing. API member companies are used to dealing with the challenges and constraints of providing schools with play areas that meet all their needs. By using exceptional design skills to transform unusable spaces, they create facilities for children of all ages and abilities. When designing and building your school’s play area and equipment you can be sure that an API member will be professional and abide by a strict professional Code of Conduct. They will have a proven track record of quality work and the expertise, knowledge and skills to ensure that the project is completed to the highest possible standards. All members of the Association of Play Industries are trustworthy and regularly monitored for financial stability so you have peace of mind. They understand the importance of safety and the importance of risk by designing spaces with built-in challenges. Members are committed to providing the best service; before, during and after the project you will benefit from long-term aftercare and support. L FURTHER INFORMATION





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Alarming findings from the Youth Sport Trust (YST) suggest that 38 per cent of English secondary schools have cut timetabled Physical Education for 14-16 year-olds since 2012, while almost one in four (24 per cent) have done so in the last academic year. It comes at a time when too many young people are inactive, obesity rates are going up, mental health issues are increasing, and there is a need for growing resilience and other employability skills among this generation. We work with thousands of schools across the country and believe that unless we reverse the slide and refresh Physical Education, we risk failing a generation who will be denied the benefits of a revitalised PE offer. Diminishing opportunities It is worrying that opportunities for young people to be active during the school day are diminishing year-on-year. Like English and

Maths, the YST believes Physical Education should be part of the bedrock of a good education equipping young people with the vital skills which support their wellbeing, aid learning in other subjects and help prepare them for employment. A high-quality PE curriculum uses sport as a vehicle through which a joy of movement is established, life skills are developed and an understanding of a healthy lifestyle is acquired. Cuts to PE time are depriving young people of these benefits. We will be selling this and future generations short if PE is not made fit for the 21st century

It worryinis opport g that for you unities to be a ng people ct the schive during are dim ool day i year‑onnishing -year


Written by Ali Oliver, chief executive officer, Youth Sport Trust

Research from the Youth Sport Trust (YST) finds that time‑tabled physical education is being squeezed and warns of what will happen to children’s future health if they stop moving. The charity’s chief executive officer, Ali Oliver, offers advice to schools on how they can ensure physical activity stays on the curriculum


How to ensure an active school day

and put at the heart of a broad and balanced curriculum in our schools. YST research is based on responses from teachers at 487 English secondary schools. It found that timetabled PE time is decreasing, and the cuts get bigger as students get older. On average pupils moving from Key Stage 3 to Key Stage 4 experience a 21 per cent drop in the amount of curriculum PE they receive a week. By the time they are aged 16 to 18-years-old they are doing just 34 minutes a week at school. Exam pressure, additional curriculum time for other subjects and staffing cuts are among the reasons cited for reductions. 38 per cent of teachers said their PE provision has declined because core/eBacc subjects have been given additional time with students taken out of timetabled Physical Education for extra tuition in other subjects. PE teachers overwhelmingly feel the subject needs to be more valued amongst school leaders, parents, wider stakeholders and importantly young people. 97 per cent of teachers agree PE should be valued more within the school curriculum for what it offers young people. We are calling for an overhaul of the focus of Physical Education and its place in the curriculum placing much greater emphasis on using sport and physical activity as vehicles through which we can enhance young people’s confidence, emotional wellbeing, E


Physical Education Primary Ltd. PE Resources for the EYFS, KS1 & KS2 Physical Development; Gymnastics; Dance; Games; Athletics; OAA Schemes of Work; Lesson Plans; Videos; Activity Cards; CPD

VX – the Best Sport You’ve Never Heard Of What is VX? It’s a mixed and inclusive sport that is also accessible to the disabled. It increases participation and gets non-sporty children involved. It’s suitable for all ages and beginners can be playing at a fast pace in just ten minutes.

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Sitting squarely in the National Curriculum and suitable for all ages and abilities VX emphasises honesty and integrity in sport. Schools use it in the curriculum, for after-school clubs and to increase participation, to target specific student groups, and give students responsibility. It involves a massive amount of both aerobic and anaerobic fitness,– but the youngsters don’t realise how hard they are working. Not only that – it ticks all your PE & Sport Premium boxes. As Rachel Mackenzie Jones (Thai Boxing World Champion & Sky Sports Athlete Mentor) says: “Fantastic that I got to play my new favourite sport … VX should be compulsory on the PE curriculum.’

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Then it’s time to introduce American Football, one of the UK’s fastest growing sports! American Football Development is the UK’s largest coaching company teaching flag football, the non-tackle, non-contact version of the game from KS2 upwards. Primaries can use the PE and Sport Premium to introduce flag football and offer a broader experience of sport to pupils, while CPD can help increase the confidence, knowledge and skills of your teaching staff. For secondary schools we have helped schools start their own American Football programs through the help of Sport England grants and are enjoying helping a new generation of players come into the game. Our free bid writing support will help you get your program off the ground.

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If you want to start your new academic year with a brand new sport then contact us today to see how we can help. From curriculum time coaching to after school clubs, from experience days to equipment and teacher CPD there’s something to fit every school’s needs. Tel: 0203 056 2700 Email:

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 physical health and life skills. Examples of how this is being achieved can be seen in many areas of the country where the Youth Sport Trust’s My Personal Best programme is being implemented. This programme supports PE teachers to develop students’ life skills through PE. In Lancashire where the programme is being run in 40 schools, PE departments are now either leading the school health and wellbeing or working much more closely with health and wellbeing leads. Ensuring an active school day Children need to be active, not just in physical education and sports, but during lunch hours, through after-school activities, and via active classroom environments. Only through this approach can young people achieve the Chief Medical Officer’s recommendation of 60 active minutes for all 5-16-year-olds. One of the ways schools can help to keep physical activity on the curriculum is by embedding physical activity across the school day. Active 30:30 The Government Childhood Obesity Plan has set out the ambition for all children to achieve one hour of physical activity every day, with schools being responsible for delivering 30 of these active minutes. In response to this, the Youth Sport Trust has developed Active 30:30 to help schools reduce sedentary behaviour and increase physical activity in young people outside of timetabled curriculum PE. Active 30:30 also helps schools address how to influence the other 30 active minutes to

be achieved outside of school by engaging families, clubs and community groups. We understand the pressures that secondary schools are facing to achieve in the core subjects and the E-bacc, and the effect this is having on the provision of high quality PE opportunities for young people. However, this is not a zero-sum game – by removing Physical Education from the curriculum schools are potentially impacting negatively on the benefits of physical activity and sport to learning in the classroom. Youth Sport Trust research highlights the need for PE to be more widely valued and promoted in the curriculum by both senior leaders and the government to ensure young people, teachers and parents are fully aware of the wide-ranging benefits of an active healthy lifestyle on learning as well as wellbeing. Learn from best practice At Pleckgate High School in Blackburn, the school was facing high numbers of students attending with low prior attainment scores, and relatively high numbers of disadvantaged students. PE teacher and head of year Stuart Cadman identified there was a need to grasp the opportunity and develop a more focused approach to student wellbeing. He identified that PE provided a perfect opportunity to do this. Stuart attended the My Personal Best training, facilitated by Youth Sport Trust, and utilised the resource cards to slowly and subtly build the principles and language into one of his year 7 PE classes. Resilience and wellbeing were E


Children need to be active, not just in physical education and sports, but during lunch hours, through after-school activities, and via active classroom environments

Believing in Every Child’s Future The Youth Sport Trust has launched a new four-year strategy – Believing in Every Child’s Future. It sets out a vision to halt the decline in children’s physical, mental and social wellbeing using the power of sport, PE and physical activity. The charity’s new strategy outlines six key objectives to achieve its 2022 vision for the future. These are: Transforming Physical Education: transform PE’s place in the curriculum, putting it at the centre of wellbeing and achievement in education. Removing barriers to sport: harness global best practice to ensure youth sport in the UK is inclusive, accessible and fun. Unlocking potential: unlock sport’s potential at every stage of a child’s life, especially where they face inequality or disadvantage. Empowering activism: empower young people through sport to become local activists, tackling the issues of their generation. Championing insight: champion the impact of physical activity, PE and sport through research and insight. Strengthening foundations: strengthen our foundations to ensure we can sustain our mission.



We are trying to reverse a deepening obesity crisis and decline in young people’s mental health by doing all we can to support schools, and urge policy makers to harness the power of sport, PE and physical activity  a key focus to the lessons. Stuart then started to adapt the learnings from his lessons into the whole school, and it is now ‘poised’ to play a central part school wide in the near future. Make time to talk Engage with your senior leadership teams and staff across all departments to see how


they could make lessons more active and ensure they understand the benefits this brings. We run a one-day course for primary school teachers that uses the context of PE and sport alongside practical learning approaches to support the teaching of English and Maths. Active Classrooms is based on research and trials in primary schools across the country. It uses

existing resources alongside the National Curriculum Programmes of Study. It has been written by teachers for teachers, so it really gets to the heart of the challenges and offers evidence based solutions. Further action We are trying to reverse a deepening obesity crisis and decline in young people’s mental health by doing all we can to support schools, and urge policy makers to harness the power of sport, PE and physical activity, use it strategically and to develop the traits and skills young people need to cope in today’s world. For additional support, you can become a Youth Sport Trust member school; visit the website for more information. L FURTHER INFORMATION


Major news outlets are consistently running pieces about the need for more support for our teachers. “Teachers are at breaking point” urges The Guardian in a recent report. xoxoxoxo “It’s time to push wellbeing up the agenda” in a FURTHER climate where over 30 per cent of teachers INFORMATION feel stressed because of work most, if not all xxxof the time and a staggering 53 per cent had considered leaving the sector within the past two years because of health pressures. “Speak to teachers,” says Simon Lee, chief executive of CSSC Sports & Leisure, “and you’ll likely find that achieving a better work-life balance is the biggest challenge. We at CSSC can certainly help to implement change that will improve the wellbeing and health of staff. The growing number of teachers joining CSSC is testament to that.” Staff wellbeing With head teachers and decision-makers focused on fallout from staffing changes or pressure to deliver results, staff wellbeing may not be front of mind. However, Daniella Lang of Brimsdown Primary school, feels that the benefits of having a health and wellbeing policy are invaluable. Lang told The Guardian how “prioritising staff happiness at work has led to a marked improvement in our school’s Ofsted grade and a new harmony in the staffroom.” She shared tips on how leaders can create plans and policy to help staff to make the most of their time so that their physical and emotional welfare is optimised. Lang mentioned that an open and honest discussion perhaps by implementing a wellbeing team is a good start. From there, leaders can begin by making small, manageable changes

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It seems that now more than ever, teachers and education staff need support from the government, industry leaders and governors. According to the Education Support Partnership helpline and charity, there has been a “sharp rise in teachers calling the helpline” with a reported “35 per cent increase in calls from teachers and 24 per cent of head teachers and deputy heads over the past 12 months”

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Importance 800 WORD of EDIT health and HEADLINEatHERE wellbeing work AS TIGHT AS POSS Implementing a health and wellbeing plan can help to reduce sick days, improve productivity and staff happiness which will then flow on to the students, creating a healthier work environment for everyone to acknowledge hard work and provide support for those suffering high stress or emotional issues and improve workload by having good, working equipment and plenty of opportunities for training. “We also get suggestions from staff of initiatives they would like to see” says Lang, “a weekly fitness class after school is the latest one we’re acting on.” While not all ideas were possible to achieve, the board is now following up ideas of staff nights out, providing information about coping with stress and paying a housekeeper to tidy after lunch so it can be a haven for staff. Implementing a plan Implementing a health and wellbeing plan can help to reduce sick days, improve productivity and staff happiness which will then flow on to the students, creating a healthier work environment for everyone. Recent studies by The Work Foundation show that 15 million days off were attributed to stress, depression and anxiety – an increase of 24 per cent since 2009, at an estimated cost of £70 billion each year. Alongside mental health, musculoskeletal health is one of the major conditions affecting British workers with 23 per cent of all lost days due to back, neck and muscle pain.

“Creating opportunities for staff to take part in physical activity at or after work” says Simon Lee, “will improve physical and mental wellbeing and play an effective role in maintaining stronger, healthier backs and necks which was recently reported as the number one cause of lost working days.” Aims of a good policy A well-rounded health and wellbeing policy should aim to encourage active lifestyles; assist employees to strike a healthy work‑life balance; support people to achieve their personal goals; provide networking and teambuilding opportunities; and improve workplace morale and performance. “Policies should be considerate of the time challenges faced by teachers and should come into play at the workplace during term time” says Simon Lee, “and offer opportunities for socialising and activity during holiday time.” Leaders can actively support staff by facilitating after-work yoga or fitness classes several times a week for example, or arrange talks by professional consultants on how to manage stress and resolve problems. Head teachers or decision makers could encourage participation in events during the holidays like parkrun or experiential challenges like Go Ape, or bread making could assist with stress relief and teambuilding. The right solution Finding a solution that makes staff feel valued and supported, but also offers enough variety for unique personalities doesn’t have to be hard or costly. CSSC Sports & Leisure has been supporting 140,000 members from the education sector, civil service and public sector to stay active, and lead fulfilling lifestyles since 1921. L FURTHER INFORMATION



Advertisement Feature Written by Natalie Harris-Briggs, marketing vice president, Avocor


Avocor – helping students become more interactive in the classroom Teaching and technology has converged in the classroom, we have witnessed an interactive revolution over the last 20 years seeing teaching move from dusty chalkboards to large format displays and from teacher centric ‘rote learning’ into a more collaborative one “Everyone is so used to using touch technology in their personal lives every day and we wanted to try and replicate that experience using Avocor displays. We wanted to find a solution which moved our students away from independent, personalised learning to a more collaborative learning environment,” says Daniel Hawkins, headmaster, Child’s Hill Primary Schools, Barnet London. Teaching and technology has converged

in the classroom, we have witnessed an interactive revolution over the last 20 years seeing teaching move from dusty chalkboards to large format displays and from teacher centric ‘rote learning’ into a more collaborative one. Interactive devices, large and small, are now regarded as a ‘must have’ technology to facilitate the core teaching and learning function of demonstration and modelling. With future developments in teaching and

learning centred around digital content, collaborative learning environments in the classroom and virtual ‘at home’ study and we will continue to create technology which will play its part in enabling this learning shift. Avocor creates market-leading, interactive, collaborative display solutions, specifically designed for the needs of the teacher and students in the classroom. Our core ethos is to deliver solutions to


Choosing the best outcome for students As pupils are surrounded by digital devices in the home and at school, it’s part of everyday life, the principle of the Avocor solution is to integrate the display at the front of the class into daily teaching. We listened carefully to the issues that were faced by teachers of integrating technology and the frustrations of technology adoption, ongoing training as well as software renewal costs, create a range of interactive displays that overcame all these barriers to teachers being able to deliver fantastic teaching in the classroom. “There are several reasons why we have made the decision to standardise on Avocor here at London Metropolitan University, we are extremely impressed with the overall aesthetics of the solution and the writing experience is outstanding. As a widening participation university, we need to invest in technology which is intuitive to help us close the gap between the digital native and those who are less astute with interactive technology, Avocor helps us to achieve this,” says Oliver Holmes, deputy director of technology and operations, London Metropolitan University. Suitable for all audiences within schools Avocor interactive touch screens deliver teacher and student centric technology and usability. We’ve put teachers and pupils at the forefront of our product development, with the objectives of bringing familiar, easy to use and secure applications to the classroom and they have been extremely favourably received within education establishments. Our solutions enhance collaboration and interaction in the learning space by replicating a tablet-like experience on a large format interactive display. Our solutions are all built on an open platform, meaning there are no propriety technology restrictions and all our solutions include an Intel approved OPS PC slot, enabling you to upgrade to a Windows 10 environment and enjoy all the benefits of renowned Microsoft packages such as PowerPoint, OneNote, Word and Excel. All our interactive displays include ultra-light weight LED technology and

4K screen resolution, creating crystal clear, stunning image clarity that will keep attention on the display. Rothwell Junior and Infant School, said: “Deploying the Avocor solution here at Rothwell has meant that our children can now read lesson content clearly and they are more engaged as a result. We are delighted that we have upgraded our classrooms and that we chose Avocor.” Cost Effective With two different ranges to choose from, we have the solution for every requirement and budget. Choose from the cost-effective E series or our award–winning F series. The E series is our cutting-edge, lightweight LED display with first-to-market, 2mm optically bonded glass, delivering the most superior user experience on an Infra-red display, while the F series includes In Glass™ touch technology, delivering an extremely responsive and smooth touch experience. “The student experience is paramount to us here at the University and our students are driving the technology agenda. Learning through collaboration is particularly important to us, we love the finger point precision of the glass and the overall speed of the display overall is impressive. As the display is optimised for Windows 10, the lecturers and students loved the design of the displays, seeing them as giant tablets and our staff have seen improvements in overall lesson delivery and student engagement,” says Stephen Dishon, development team manager, The University of Edinburgh. Incredibly innovative, Avocor displays include Avocor Intelligent Touch, delivering a superior writing experience that is as smooth as putting pen to paper. Fast and precise, our solutions differentiate easily between pen, finger and palm, creating a fluid collaboration experience for all. Results “Choosing the Avocor solution was an easy decision for us, the superior glass technology means that our children can work in light, bright classroom environments with no need to darken the room to get the best visual result. The Avocor solution has fitted seamlessly into our school, instantly supporting teaching and learning without causing any more work for our teaching staff. Ultimately the Avocor solution has saved Goffs Oak time and money as well as enhancing the learning experience for our

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market which are simple and easy to use, therefore maximising technology adoption across educational environments.

pupils,” says Michelle Matthews, headteacher, Goffs Oak Primary and Nursery School. Avocor Intelligent touch technology enables “in-app” inking directly into a host of applications including the Microsoft Office suite and the Edge browser, as well as edge-swipe functionality, giving our displays a tablet-like feel that users will love. All Avocor displays come with a range of collaborative software packages that are designed to work seamlessly with our innovative, interactive displays from intuitive teaching tools to collaborative whiteboarding sessions. Enjoy a lifetime license of Qwizdom OKTOPUS education software, an interactive teaching tool that enhances student learning. Built to run on 4K OKTOPUS features over 70 subject specific tools based on a wide range of curriculum topics and enables teachers to create and deliver highly engaging lessons that are truly immersive. “We love the pre-installed education software which is extremely easy to use and intuitive,” says Oliver Holmes, London Met University. Also included with every Avocor display is a three-year subscription to Quizdom Ximbus, a convenient and easy to use, cloud-based software platform. Ximbus enables quick and easy lesson preparation, presentation and collaborative white-boarding, and integrates seamlessly with the Google G-Suite. Lastly, all Avocor displays include Avocor Note by Nureva™, an easy to use, whiteboarding application that comes pre-loaded with a comprehensive range of interactive tools. With a selection of professionally created backgrounds, images and icons, the software has been specially designed to enable every user to create great looking whiteboard content, simply. “Sandwell Academy initiated a refresh programme over the summer of 2017 to replace our existing whiteboard and projector technology with Avocor interactive displays. From the outset we were impressed with the customer service we received, particularly from their Academies Partnership Manager who clearly had an extensive knowledge of technology adoption and the challenges facing education and took the time to understand our needs and requirements, becoming instrumental in our deployment. As an Avocor customer, we feel that we have a direct route of communication with the manufacturer and that our input and feedback around the product is always well received and taken onboard. The service we have received from Avocor has been a key part of why we have decided to standardise on the brand across our estate,” says Daljeet Kangh, head of IT, Sandwell Academy With a comprehensive demonstration programme, you can see the Avocor solution at one of our experience centres or have a display delivered to your educational establishment, giving you the opportunity to find out how Avocor can create collaborative learning environments for yourself. L FURTHER INFORMATION Tel: 01276 804654



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IT & Computing

Transformational technology in the classroom As education technology continues to develop, John Jackson, CEO at London Grid for Learning, talks to Education Business about current trends, digital innovation, school transformation, and how organisations can future proof their technology purchases

New s ogie technol nt prese nities pportu huge o nhance to e t require bu learningent in terms investm ining and of tra port sup

The effective use of education technology is a vital practice in any effective organisation. This means not only knowing which purchases you need to make but how to effectively implement and integrate these new resources into all aspects of school life. In 2018, education technology (edtech) shouldn’t be viewed in isolation as an ‘add-on’ or an extra, but embedded within standard

practises in order to aid institution-wide improvement and transformation through digital innovation.

Edtech trends Two of the biggest trends schools are currently witnessing are the increased use of artificial intelligence (AI) as well as the mass adoption of cloud storing used to access data and programmes over the Internet instead of their own server.

These services bring great benefits to schools as they enable them to extend learning outside the classroom, either at home or from public spaces via a mobile network. The rollout of Cloud also provides the opportunity for them to work more collaboratively and to share resources and best practice. On the flip side we’re also seeing a rise in cyber attacks in the education and public sectors with the Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks on the NHS making national headlines last year and more recently hoax bomb phishing emails demanding money from schools. E Volume 23.3 | EDUCATION BUSINESS MAGAZINE


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Progression and assessment in MFL at Key Stage 2 is too disjointed Assessing pupil progression in MFL at KS2 is daunting for non‑specialists and the wide variation of achievement is creating a disjointed MFL transition from primary to secondary school Skill expectations The National Curriculum Programme of Study states that teaching a foreign language “should focus on enabling pupils to make substantial progress in one language.” The Programme of Study goes on to identify key skill areas that pupils need to develop in Modern Foreign Language (MFL). However, progression at KS2 may look different for teachers that are non-specialists in MFL to those who are specialists or have a high level of competence with the target language. For some, being able to count to twenty, say all the basic colours in Spanish or name 10 animals in French may be a milestone achievement. For others, writing three paragraphs about family and home may be an achievable expectation for Year 6. The skill outcomes are not clearly defined in the Programme of Study for each year group, but rather it sets out a general expectation for the end of Key Stage 2. Not only does it leave non-specialist teachers of MFL in a quandary over what language structures to actually teach, but also to what level. As discussed in last month’s issue of Education Business, this also assumes that the non-specialist teacher is confident at teaching the target language in the first place. Then, of course, there is the question of assessment, which should reflect the degree of pupil progression with the target language. If teachers are using a good scheme of work then all these issues should, of course, be sorted. However, many primary schools rely heavily on language apps and online resources to do the job of assessment for them, as they do not always have the experience to clarify the outcomes themselves.


How to assess To truly assess pupil progression in MFL, the teacher needs to be able to answer these basic questions: What is the specific language skill? How much of the language skill can the pupil achieve? How does the pupil achieve the skill? How well does the pupil achieve the skill? How often does the pupil achieve the skill? and How else does the pupil demonstrate the skill? Language Magnet provides a scheme of work for KS2 that enables teachers to answer each of these questions easily. By using specially designed self‑assessment trackers, pupils are able to identify and evidence the actual language structures that they have learned and how much support they have needed. The pupil trackers are then combined with the assessment criteria for listening, speaking, reading and writing skills, which have been specifically designed for easy reference by non-specialists. Using this combination of assessing, both language structures and skills, KS2 teachers are able to confidently establish a very accurate and robust assessment of each pupil’s attainment and progression in MFL. Since the Language Magnet modules recycle and extend language structures from previous modules, pupils are able to develop their creativity by substituting new vocabulary or phrases to develop their own ideas, and teachers can quickly see how much language has been retained and reused. Both the pupil trackers and the assessment criteria reflect this progression of the language structures and skills, so teachers can be confident that pupils are progressing steadily in foreign language and are not simply increasing their vocabulary

and phrase knowledge in a disjointed fashion or without any application. Real progression A primary school in Nottingham, that had been using the Language Magnet Scheme of Work for just three months at the time of their Ofsted inspection, received a report that commented, “In subjects other than reading, writing and mathematics, the best progress is made in PE and Modern Foreign Languages.” It is precisely because Language Magnet develops and builds on the language structures throughout the modules that teachers do not fall into the trap of defaulting to familiar topics, which limits pupil progress. The support that is provided for non-specialists in MFL throughout the course, from detailed lesson plans, full audio support, language structure explanations, grammar colour coding to personal coaching, is invaluable, enabling teachers to move beyond their default levels of foreign language delivery. It was not surprising then that one teacher from this primary school in Nottingham stated unashamedly “I hated teaching French before I used Language Magnet!” This self‑confessed “complete beginner” in MFL is now teaching and assessing French confidently, is creating an exemplary bilingual environment naturally, and has a class of pupils that absolutely love their language lessons. As for assessment, both the teacher and her pupils are making outstanding progress in MFL. L FURTHER INFORMATION 079 6335 5505


 Tackling threats At LGfL we’re helping schools to tackle the increased threat of cyber attacks through 24/7 pro-active monitoring as well as double firewalling and the provision of specialist solutions such as Intercept X anti-virus and Malwarebytes anti-malware software. In addition to making sure that they have up to date protection we’ve established a new centre of excellence called #CyberProtect to advise schools on how they can best protect themselves. Schools themselves should also make sure

that they’re prepared for these increasingly sophisticated attacks and attribute responsibility for security to a specific member of staff charged with evaluating their current solutions, keeping it up to date with the latest upgrades and determining if additional protection is required. Increasing bandwidth As well as preparing for threats, it’s important to plan for the huge number of positive developments we’re seeing in the edtech world. There are many exciting E

The London Grid for Learning (LGfL) has announced the launch of SmartBuy, a new initiative which aims to collectively save schools millions of pounds on their technology purchases.

IT & Computing

Schools can tackle the increased threat of cyber attacks through 24/7 pro‑active monitoring as well as double firewalling and the provision of specialist solutions such as anti-virus and anti‑malware software

Aggregated purchasing from the London Grid for Learning

By virtue of its scale, LGfL can secure fantastic savings and breakthrough commercial agreements for its 3000-member schools, MATs and local authorities. As a not‑for‑profit organisation, the Trust is committed to ensuring it uses this buying power for the benefit of its community and reinvesting those surpluses back into schools. To date, LGfL has already saved its schools in excess of £300m through the central purchasing of tools such as Sophos Intercept X anti-ransomware software, provided free of cost to its schools. A recent network upgrade has saved schools £13.5m whilst a further landmark scheme, the Free School Meals Eligibility Checker, has enabled schools to claim over £7.5m in Pupil Premium funding from the Department for Education – additional revenue schools are entitled to claim for every pupil on free school meals. Over the course of 2018 LGfL will look to create a SmartBuy ‘Centre of Excellence’ for procurement to help schools and other customers save money and deliver improved outcomes. LGfL will also work with its partners to deliver support for schools, providing both the technology and tools to deliver change in the classroom. John Jackson, chief executive officer at the London Grid for Learning commented: “Procurement and deal making is an area where LGfL comes into its own by virtue of its scale and ability to offer suppliers a very low cost of sale for schools. SmartBuy will enable LGfL to use its aggregated purchasing power more efficiently for the benefit of our entire community. At a time when schools are under extreme pressure to cut budgets we are determined as a not‑for‑profit to help schools make savings whilst continuing to drive innovation and embrace exciting new technologies to accelerate teaching and learning. “Our suppliers share this excitement because it enables them to reach further and faster with their products than attempting to do this directly with individual schools.”



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The past, the present, and the future of collaboration Collaboration has long been an expanding sector of AV. The idea of being able to bring an almost ‘hive’ mind set to both the workplace and to education is exciting for anyone. The introduction of technology has allowed people to come together and work more efficiently with faster issue resolution and a greater probability of success A big part of day-to-day success for schools and universities, is how well your students (and sometimes teachers too) are able to work together. Can they solve problems effectively? Do they provide new and innovative solutions to the office and to their customers? Do they motivate each other to do more and be better? “Individual commitment to a group effort that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilisation work.” – Vince Lombardi. Collaboration in education The introduction of collaboration in education isn’t exactly new, but it is a growing (and necessary) trend. Working together on projects challenges people to think and look at the bigger picture – it’s not just about their individual role/thoughts. With the use of video conferencing software such as Skype, students are able to collaborate from all around the world at low cost – they’re no longer restricted to the thoughts and walls of the classroom. Not only does this make working together easier, but it also allows for the potential of a more diverse and unique solution. Interactivity has also become ingrained with day-to‑day life, thanks to smartphones, and when mixed with education it instantaneously opens up a whole world of creativity.

New Technologies In the past, new technology would be placed in the classroom but with mobile devices readily available to all, the classroom concept is changing. Where to place advances in technology varies from task to task. Some choose to create rooms that are entirely dedicated to groups of students working together, others create pods or huddle areas that encourage people to come and go, and many choose to have desks in quiet parts of their buildings. These spaces have continually shown to allow students to be more efficient, productive and creative. It also gives them an opportunity to share each other’s skill sets, providing an improved and well-rounded result. Collaboration requires two or more persons to converse and the rise in AV/ICT in schools has produced a change in the way we work together. This has spurred Unicol to expand their already diverse portfolio of stands, trolleys and wall/ceiling mounting solutions. Having been designing and manufacturing AV mounts for over 55 years, Unicol have seen many trends in the AV sector and continue to produce mounting solutions to help support the wants and needs of its customers. 2016 saw the introduction of Unicol’s Rhobus tables. Available in two varieties, Huddle and Stand-to-Meet, the sleek and stylish desks are designed to allow people to comfortably

work together on a day‑to‑day basis. The Huddle can be powered up and down to adjust table heights to suit the activity, and/or the space, whilst the stand-tomeet has a fixed height to provide a 5-20 minute speed-meeting area. There is a huge choice of AV technology now on the market, including displays, controllers, pc’s etc, and Unicol have designed their Huddle with the idea that it is customised to suit the customer’s requirements. Both Rhobus versions have full unified connectivity, ample capacity for cabling, built in hearing induction loop, codec and integration with other systems, all accessible through a cable well and locking door with underside rack options. Video conference camera mounts are available for all the leading manufacturers of VC equipment. Table tops can be customised in different shapes with cut-outs for all the leading brands of connectivity devices. They can also be branded with different colours and logos. This level of customisation allows full integration with existing systems or gives users the opportunity to make it bespoke to the level of collaboration that they need/want. Future trends show that video conferencing will become the normal collaboration tool across the globe and that dynamic will change how we all work with one another. Unicol are actively looking at designs where the latest innovation in cameras is mounted in the centre of a round or oval table allowing a 360 degree viewing area and providing a simultaneous view of the speaker triggered by voice activation. Currently, however, tables like the Rhobus Huddle and Stand-to‑Meet work fluidly with video conferencing cameras to provide the one thing that efficient collaboration brings; human contact. Whatever new technologies may or may not come along, the ability for people to collaborate with one another easily and efficiently will always be a requirement. The ability to enhance teams and reach new heights of innovation is a goal organisations seek, and people will always need a place to collaborate and Unicol will continue to innovate that way ahead. L FURTHER INFORMATION



Overcoming edtech challenges Balancing budgets is one of the key challenges schools face when investing in new technology. When faced with the choice of cutting staff or cutting resources senior leaders will inevitably go for the latter. This puts the emphasis on organisations and suppliers to help schools get more for less through

Balancing budgets is one of the key challenges schools face when investing in new technology aggregated procurement and richer services at no additional costs. At LGfL we’ve set-up a new service called #LetsGetDigital and have partnered with Google and Microsoft to provide schools with cheaper cloud services. My advice for institutions looking to invest in edtech is to start with a clear set of priorities informed by an assessment of their current provision, the issues that need to be resolved and plans for future years. This must be underpinned by a change management strategy outlining how this major change will be handled and how they are going to support senior management and teachers. A comprehensive view of finances is also crucial to identify how much is available and how much is being spent in which areas. Schools can also benefit from moving away from capital purchases to pay-per-use models where customers are charged only when they use a product, which will reduce upfront costs and ensure money is well spent. Planning for the future Considering a school’s future requirements as well the general direction of edtech progression is essential for those who want to continue to capitalise on current investments in technology. To get the best from any

IT & Computing

 start-ups and new resources making the most of technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), augmented and virtual reality, cloud and game-based learning. All these technologies present huge opportunities to enhance learning but require investment in terms of training and support to ensure they can be utilised effectively. Staff need to be taught how to use new tools and trained in the way they can be used to augment learning. New technology can fundamentally change the way we teach and learn but as a sector we need to invest in capacity and support change. There’s no point spending money on kit that isn’t used. Schools need help and support to make these necessary changes. Additionally many of these new resources require high bandwidth to operate – there is nothing more frustrating than planning a lesson using new technology and then discovering it doesn’t work on account of insufficient internet provision. Providing fibre to education premises is one of our key priorities at LGfL and schools should consider potential issues such as this when planning for the future.

purchase investing in staff as well an effective strategy to implement new technology is essential. Schools will often buy new tools not realising that a tool they already have serves the same purpose. Similarly many institutions fail to make the most of additional features and add-ons for technology they already use. Adequate training in all new technology and internal and external CPD is also key to securing staff buy-in. Additionally it’s important to be clear about priorities. Unlike many businesses, schools have limited budgets and resources and need to ensure they get really good return on investment and also factor in the costs associated with cyclical refreshes. Transformational technology should always be evaluated in terms of the significant benefit it brings to the whole institution. Finally, make sure your external IT supplier has the skills and capacity to support you effectively – this will make an immeasurable difference in allowing you to make the most out of your technology purchases. L FURTHER INFORMATION

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Across the UK, people are exposed to illegal and harmful levels of air pollution on a daily basis. It’s easy to think that this is just a London problem. However, 37 of the 43 zones that the UK is divided into for air quality monitoring are still breaching legal limits of air pollution that should have been met in 2010. The UK is not forecast to meet these until at least 2028. This is taking a terrible toll on people’s health, including that of a generation of children who should have grown up breathing cleaner and healthier air. Children are particularly vulnerable. Not only are their developing bodies susceptible to damage from toxic pollutants but, for their size, they also breathe more air each minute than an adult and so can take in more pollution in relative terms. Studies, such as the Exhale project in East London, have shown how air pollution can stunt the growth of children’s lungs, limiting their lung capacity and leading to further

Childre bodies n’s more su are to dam sceptible toxic po age from they br llutants and e air eachathe more than an minute adult

health problems as they grow older. Air pollution can cause coughs and wheezing in children, trigger asthma attacks and make these more severe. There is also increasing evidence that air pollution may increase the risk to children of developing asthma. A recent study by the University of Leeds suggested that up to 38 per cent of all annual childhood asthma cases in Bradford may be linked to traffic-related pollution. The capacity to learn Studies have suggested how air pollution could affect children’s capacity to learn and cause poor performance in the classroom. There are also suggested links to other impacts on the neurological

Written by Andrea Lee, senior campaigner, clean Air team, ClientEarth

Children are particularly vulnerable to air pollution. With 900 schools across the UK located on or near illegally polluted roads, what can schools do to address the issue? Client Earth’s Andrea Lee investigates

Air Quality

How’s the air quality around your school?

development of children, including an increased risk of autism spectrum disorder. While there are many sources of air pollution, road transport is a major source, contributing up to 80 per cent of the problem where legal limits are broken in towns and cities across the UK. Diesel vehicles are a particular problem in urban areas as they emit on average more nitrogen oxides (NOx), which include the harmful gas nitrogen dioxide, than their petrol counterparts. The Volkswagen Dieselgate scandal also highlighted how diesel cars can emit more on the road than in the laboratory tests. Even some of the newer diesel cars have been shown to emit more NOx per mile than new lorries. Doubts remain over whether the new testing regime can improve the situation. That’s why it is particularly worrying that, using government data, ClientEarth has been able to identify over 900 schools across the UK that are on or near illegally polluted roads. Children’s daily lives revolve around school, including the journey there and back. According to the National Education Union, air pollution is “a growing area of concern” for their members. Last year they published guidance with the British Lung Foundation to help schools take practical steps to protect children. In 2014 during the so-called ‘Saharan’ smog event, which resulted in a 14 per cent rise in calls related to breathing difficulties to the London Ambulance service, the school governors of a primary school located on London’s North Circular decided to keep children inside as a precaution, particularly E


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3D printing finds its mark in the education sector Like many technologies 3D printing has taken its time to find its true vocation where the gains in digital processing are discovered by both leaders and followers. Education is adapting to 3D printing, but the needs of accuracy and the adoption of suitable materials is yet to be fully addressed Often, new technologies need time to be matched with other skills and processes in order to be fully efficient. The advances in software, 3D scanners and 3D printers and light sensitive resins has now certainly reached this point. Awesome Apps Ltd is a European Distributor for the new MoonRay series of DLP printers that are revolutionising the worlds of dental production, investment casting applications and rapid prototyping, among others. A lot of the company’s work is actually an education process to explain how and where 3D printing fits within the modern workflows and while education is adapting to 3D printing; where it fits and how to use it practically is less clear. The art class is the easiest of introductions but the needs of accuracy and the adoption of suitable materials is yet to be fully addressed. The MoonRay 3D printer The MoonRay 3D printer works using the newest technology with an led based light source of defined wavelength. It uses an array of microscopic and individually controlled mirrors to project an ultra violet light onto very thin slivers of a UV resin held in a shallow tray. The layer is cured and begins to solidify before the light is re-focussed on the next layer and cured in the same way. The layers can be as little as 20 microns in height or

about a quarter of the width of a human hair. The detail produced is more than enough for many applications and there are three differing resolution versions to match the applications. The technology prints particularly accurate models that are dimensionally consistent across the entire build platform and items are not distorted by where they lie on the platform. Driven by easy to use software for the Mac or Windows platforms, the user can position, scale, rotate and duplicate the model at the click of a button. The software runs on a perfectly normal PC or laptop and requires no specialist training to operate. For parts requiring supports during the process the software automatically generates these, such that they are both easy to remove and useful in ensuring a correct solidification process. The system is commanded by the software via an Ethernet or wireless link and is free to perform other tasks during the actual printing. This type of 3D printing technology has the net advantage that its is faster than the earlier laser driven (SLA) printers and can produce multiple parts in the time that the laser generation printers take to produce just one and is much less fussy in its handling and life span requirements. Within the education sector, 3D printers have been used largely to demonstrate how they

work and nearly all using a technology that is related to fusing an already solid material. Saving money with low costs These printers have the benefit of relatively low costs but suffer in terms of speed and precision. Resins available for model making or rapid prototyping not only include the full range of colours but also varying material strength properties and amazing flexibility. Prototypes are not just confined to engineering. For example, the fashion sector now use 3D printing in producing adornments or accessories to handbags, belts and shoes. With very tight deadlines to adhere to several times a year, the design, make and delivery of these Zamac (a zinc alloy) components can be quickly substituted by a 3D print model and plated as prototypes for next week’s catwalk show long before traditional methods can produce them. Many educational entities have rightly prioritised the digital connection between departments, populations and suppliers, but there are areas where greater digital communication can be further enhanced by more tactile productions. Pictures and presentations are all good for getting the points across but to really get the feel of a project or new device, an in-house 3D model not only provides a realistic rendition of the idea but also details with room for improvement or modification. While such investments were initially restricted to outside of the office environment and often costed as major capital spend items, todays 3D printers cost less than a communications server or a web site update. What seems like a design concept difficult to grasp and even more difficult to relay to students and colleagues can often become straightforward when demonstrated in the form of a realistic model. The rapid turnaround of ideas into concrete examples is the essence of 3D printing and applicable to many more enterprises than are currently in use. The MoonRay 3D printer offers a compact, speedy, professional and elegant solution backed by the software and thirty-year, technology expertise of Awesome Apps Ltd. L FURTHER INFORMATION 012 4237 0453



Air Quality

 those with asthma. In 2015, Sheffield Council proposed plans to relocate a school away from the M1 to help reduce children’s exposure to air pollution. Taking action Protecting children from air pollution requires a combination of taking action to address the root causes and minimising their exposure to the emissions. Both are important given the current situation but in the long-term the most sustainable solution is to reduce air pollution to safer levels, not just around schools, so that all children can breathe cleaner air with healthier lungs. Schools can work with their pupils and students to raise awareness of the problem locally. Pupils can learn the science and technology behind air pollution, what causes it and the health impacts. They can also learn communication and creative skills to develop campaigns and resources to raise awareness in their local community. As part of the first National Clean Air Day last year, schools across Greater Manchester took part in a competition to create radio and video adverts to raise awareness about air pollution. Anti-idling campaigns are also popular – asking parents to switch off their engines while they drop off and pick up their children from school. How children get to and from school not only affects levels of pollution in the environment but it can also affect their exposure to it. Studies suggest that concentrations of air pollution can be up to 12 times higher inside vehicles than those experienced by cyclists and pedestrians on the same routes. Local authorities So encouraging parents to let their children walk or cycle to school, can have many benefits. Activities such as the Big Pedal in April and Walk to School Week in May can be great ways to do this. But it is not only the school run that contributes to air pollution around schools.

Protecting children from air pollution requires a combination of taking action to address the root causes and minimising their exposure to the emissions Some local authorities, including Edinburgh and Camden councils, are trialling schemes to temporarily close roads around schools during drop off and pick up times to improve road safety and reduce air pollution. This type of action can, therefore, also reduce emissions from other local traffic not just from parents driving their children to school. Ultimately, however, schools cannot be expected to tackle what is a national public health problem alone. Leadership to solve this problem needs to come from the UK government, which needs to address national policy failures that have made the problem worse and to support local authorities in tackling local pollution problems. ClientEarth has been holding the UK government to account over its failure to tackle illegal and harmful levels of air pollution. Three successive legal challenges have resulted in the UK, Scottish and Welsh governments being ordered to produce air quality plans to show how they are going to meet legal limits of air pollution in the shortest time possible. Progress has been made but they are dragging their heels on taking the urgent action they know is needed to remove the most polluting vehicles from the most polluted parts of our towns and cities. A national network of Clean Air Zones is needed but the UK government is passing the buck to underfunded and overstretched local authorities. The government’s reluctance to take action is perhaps going against the tide. People, particularly parents, are growing increasingly aware and concerned about air pollution. Recent YouGov polling showed that

parents across the UK support bold action to protect the health of their children. A total of 60 per cent supported traffic exclusion zones around schools while only 13 per cent opposed the idea. The poll also revealed that 60 per cent were worried about the effect that air pollution was having on their children’s health. And 70 per cent were in favour of the government alerting schools on high pollution days and supplying guidance on how to protect children from air pollution. In response, ClientEarth and the British Lung Foundation have launched the Clean Air Parents’ Network to support concerned parents and carers of children across the country who want to help solve the UK’s air pollution crisis. The network will help them start conversations and engage with local and national decision makers who have not just a moral but a legal duty to take urgent and bold action to tackle the illegal and harmful levels of air pollution that are putting their families’ health at risk. Schools concerned about how air pollution might be affecting the health of their pupils and students are also welcome to get in touch with the network and encourage parents to get involved. Dirty air is not something that we have to learn to live with but we need more people to join the fight for our right to breathe clean air. Find out more and sign up to the Clean Air Parents’ Network at the website below. L FURTHER INFORMATION



Is the next Capability Brown at your school? Are your pupils looking for a rewarding career, with good prospects? Landscaping could be for them, with opportunities for both creative and practical people. GoLandscape is here to offer advice on the roles and routes into the landscaping and encourage people to consider a career in this diverse industry.

GO Landscape building real careers



Our gardens and green spaces have the amazing capability of improving not just our mood but our mental and physical wellbeing in many ways. An incredible amount of research and study has gone into demonstrating the importance and value of green space to our society. The benefits can be numerous and include flood mitigation, air pollution reduction and climate change adaptation, to name but a few. Add to this the increase in biodiversity and we can feel we are giving back to nature and not just taking. These principles can be applied to any green space but become even more pronounced when we consider the importance of having green spaces within schools, especially from the pollution

perspective. As an example, let’s take the value of trees, shrubs and hedges. They reduce noise and filter many pollutants out of the air. Carefully positioned trees around schools can help reduce energy consumption for heating and cooling buildings, and grassed areas are significantly cooler than tarmac and concrete. But is this value high on a school’s agenda?

With spring o n its way , a s you look ou t o f y our window the gre , how are en around spaces school your shapi up? ng

Better performance Every school is facing performance pressures, from how their pupils do in exams and tests and where the school sits in the league tables, to how well it performed in its latest Ofsted inspection. Research has been conducted on pupil performance, considering gender, ethnicity, social background, parents’ education and even their

father’s profession. All in a bid to better understand how support can be put in place to improve pupil performance. But what if there was a simpler solution? A study was carried out in Massachusetts in the United States to see if there were any links between ‘greenness’ and school-based performance. 905 schools were studied and the results showed that students with a higher exposure to greenness showed better academic performance in both English and Maths, especially in the spring when they sat their MCAS tests. This could prove useful if your school is involved with the first National Reference Test (NRT). Spain carried out a similar study in Barcelona and found that not only did children’s working memory and behaviour improve but also that there was a drop in inattentiveness. Outdoor spaces have also been linked to an improved Ofsted rating; A Natural Connections school Ofsted report in 2014 said: ‘Pupils also enjoy an increasing range of opportunities for outdoor education, which broadens their horizons and enhances their E

Written by Stephen Ensell, BALI’s education officer

Often spectacular outdoor spaces are created, but there is a failure in understanding the level of maintenance involved and the fact that plants could look very different in a few years’ time. A professional landscaper can make sure this is taken into consideration when planning a new green space, writes BALI’s education officer, Stephen Ensell


Giving attention to neglected green spaces



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Heritage • Reliability • Trust • Innovation


 progress in classroom work. These activities contribute to pupils’ improving spiritual, moral, social and cultural development.’ Maintenance and redesign With spring on its way, as you look out of your window, how are the green spaces around your school shaping up? The challenge can be the management and maintenance of these spaces. Neglected green spaces are less likely to be used, so now is the ideal time to plan the maintenance or redesign of those spaces. Consideration first needs to be given to how they are used, which will determine the type, frequency and cost of the maintenance regime they require. It is crucial to consider this when redesigning outdoor spaces in the school environment. Often spectacular spaces are created but there is a failure in understanding the level of maintenance involved and the fact that plants grow and the area could look very different in a few years’ time. Before you know it the area looks unloved and neglected and nobody uses it. A professional landscaper can make sure this is all taken into consideration when planning a new green space. They will seek to understand how the space is to be utilised and create a design to suit the school’s needs, building in an affordable maintenance schedule that can be sustained. Unfortunately, there is no such thing as a ‘no maintenance’ green space but there certainly can be a ‘low maintenance’ option. The key here is to create more than just an area to look at but also to have an area that’s usable, an extension of the classroom if you like. For younger children these areas encourage exploration, creativity and a sense of wonder, as well as physical activity. It seems easier to build in these activities

You may feel you have no room for a green space but this is no longer an excuse. Green walls and roofs take up little space, can be installed inside or out, and have many of the benefits of larger green spaces within primary schools but often becomes more of a challenge to use these spaces in secondary schools, unless it’s a sports pitch – and even these are being replaced with all-weather and artificial surfaces. Connecting with nature Concerns have been expressed over a loss of connection with nature, referred to as Nature Deficit Disorder (NDD). Many children are spending less and less time outdoors; this in turn leads to a reduced affinity with nature and, ultimately, disengagement from environmental issues and a lack of appreciation for biodiversity. There must surely be an opportunity for every subject to include a relevant activity in green spaces, not just the creative and science subjects. In the great outdoors, Maths and English move from abstract principles to realistic scenarios that can bring the subjects to life, whether writing descriptive passages and poems or working out areas and perimeters. Green spaces also offer opportunities to teach extra‑curricular subjects, such as gardening skills and orienteering. They also present opportunities to involve industry employers, such as landscapers and grounds maintenance contractors, who could demonstrate their work. Members of the British Association of Landscape Industries (BALI) can always be approached to support in this way through

the organisation’s ‘GoLandscape’ outreach initiative ( BALI GoLandscape ambassadors are happy to go into schools to talk to students, staff and parents about career opportunities and pathways within the landscape industry. You may feel you have no room for a green space but this is no longer an excuse. Green walls and roofs take up little space, can be installed inside or out, and have many of the benefits of larger green spaces. They can create a great talking point and have important environmental qualities because they act as living insulation, both thermal and acoustic. The plants also absorb air pollutants and have the same ability as traditional ground‑level green space to improve wellbeing, lower stress levels and increase productivity. All of this goes to show how every area of the school can be used to motivate and encourage learning, with green spaces an integral part of this learning infrastructure. Even if they are only used to grab a quiet lunch break and soak up the joy of being outdoors, they serve an invaluable purpose and are worthy of our attention. L FURTHER INFORMATION



Case Study

Helping pupils achieve their full potential by focusing on school performance data FFT is a non-profit organisation established in 2001 as part of the Fischer Family Trust. FFT Aspire dashboards focus on school performance data to help pupils achieve their full potential and schools to be the best. FFT Education Datalab produces independent, cutting‑edge research that can be used by policy makers to inform education policy and by schools to guide practice. FFT forward looking data available through the interactive FFT Aspire subscription includes a set of personalised target setting dashboards with varying levels of challenge to suit pupils and the school. They are all based on the latest KS1 and KS2 frameworks and use new national standards. Used by 14,000 schools not to predict the future but to change it. School professionals have found FFT most useful when focusing on the range of outcomes for each child, not just a single result. This, combined with the comparisons at ‘average’, ‘high’ and ‘very high’ benchmarks really is of benefit when thinking about future aspirations and potential outcomes for the years ahead. “For the last three years we have focused our data use and during this time our progress from Key Stage

1 has massively improved.” Nicky, deputy headteacher, Nottingham. Some top tips are to look at the subject‑by-subject future KS1, KS2, KS4 or KS5 performance up to four years ahead. Compare with ‘average’ to ensure you will be above the floor, compare with ‘very high’ for the best progress based on your own children’s starting points. Compare estimates of future performance across all of the key pupil groups, side by side – gender, prior attainment, disadvantage, SEND, ethnicity, EAL. Identify where further intervention and support may be required to improve progress and

close gaps. Use ‘out of the box’, benchmarks for all of your pupils. Simply decide on the appropriate level of challenge for each pupil and then set an expectation. FFT also tells you how likely a pupil is to reach that target, giving you the right balance between ‘realistic’ and ‘challenging’. Remember to add the basic details of new pupils arriving at the school in to FFT Aspire to benchmark them. Make an evidence based approach second nature across the school. John, headteacher, Lancashire explains, “I now use FFT Aspire at the curriculum committee of the governing body, in discussions with my leadership and management team, and planning with my numeracy and literacy subject leaders.” “Schools can monitor pupil progress, generate reports which can be saved and exported to use in governor meetings or during an inspection”, says Andrew Hill, head of School Services at FFT, and adds “higher benchmarks are often set to reflect additional targeted funding, such as pupil premium”. FURTHER INFORMATION Tel: 014 4677 6262

FFT Aspire is the UK’s leading education data analysis tool. It is used by over 14,000 schools, MATs, local authorities and academy chains. Subscribe today on our webpage or book a demo to find out more.

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A more detailed subject-based analysis for senior leaders and teachers.

Contact us today or visit our website to find out more information - 01446 776 262 We’re always happy to provide further information about FFT. Please email



The Business Show

The Business Show 2018: London Education Business sat down with the marketing director for the Business Show, Hassan Allan, to get insights into the event and its future On the 16-17 May, UK’s most ambitious SME owners, start-ups, creative leaders and decision makers will take part in Europe’s largest business event. The most influential minds in UK’s entrepreneurial world will be speaking, such as founder of YO Sushi, Simon Woodroffe, the UK’s leading figure in influencer marketing Ben Jeffries, the UK’s top 20 entrepreneurs in 2017 Liam Hackett, and even Top Gear Original Stig – now renowned investor, Perry McCarthy. Education Business sat down with the marketing director for the Business Show, Hassan Allan, to get insights into the event and its future. What can you tell us about the Business Show? The Business Show is a hall-of-fame event in the UK market and it’s a necessity in order to bring SME owners and startup owners all in one place in order to take their businesses to the next level. It has been running for 19 years and each year we continue to evolve and do something different for both our exhibitors and audiences. The amount of success stories we’ve had so far from both visitors and exhibitors is quite incredible and the reason we love doing what we do. The Business Show has always been free‑to-attend and to this day is what makes it so successful. The fact that tickets are free means we get a huge attendance which in turn generates more ROI for our exhibitors. How do you get high‑level industry experts to speak at the event? This is one of the main struggles when organising business events, but at the same time why I love it so much. We have to be persistent and make each keynote understand the benefits of speaking at the Business Show. Some do it for their own personal gain, others truly just want to share their knowledge and inspire the next wave of entrepreneurs. The speakers do have very busy

schedules and you have to book them months prior to the event. However, from personal experience, after you establish a relationship with them, it’s easier, but definitely challenging until you reach that point.

being inspired and that’s what we thrive to do each year. When we choose the keynote speakers, we have the mindset that every business owner or future entrepreneur who attends The Business Show will leave with at least that one golden nugget of information that will change their business for the better.

How are you positioned on the UK business events market? What are your plans PRYSM Group, the company behind and expectations for the The Business Show brand, is one of the event happening this May? fastest‑growing and most progressive We expect over 25,000 visitors and all of exhibition organisers in the world. We remain them will have the chance to meet in person independent and have spent the last 19 some of the UK’s brightest and most years running more than 30 of successful entrepreneurs. Simon Europe’s leading B2B trade The Woodroffe, Liam Hackett, Ben events across the UK. Busines Jeffries and The Original Stig Year on year we grow s Show h are just a few of the names as an organisation as that we are blessed to have our events establish running as been f o years event. Just to themselves as r 1 9  years atgetthisa taste, and ea for the May market leaders evolves c h y e a r i t 2018 event we expect in their various to have 250 seminars, sectors. Our well-run someth and offers 350 exhibitors, and well‑attended ing diff e for exh 170 interactive masterclass exhibitions range ibitors a rent sessions, networking and from the Business n d audienc funding opportunities and Show – which attracts es to top it all off, Google Digital over 25,000 businesses – Garage and Facebook will make a to sector‑specific events such return with a special keynote seminar. as Legalex, Restaurant Tech Live and Elite Sports Expo to name just a few. What can the exhibitors expect different for the future? What were the results of the This year we created a floorplan in which last editions of the show? all exhibitors, regardless of what they sell, All the events were packed and to our are identifiable to our visitors, but still able delight, people left with their expectations to be located at prime positions on the floor exceeded. We know this because we had plan. Last year we had specific zones with a great take-up on stands for our 2018 themed content and exhibitors. We are still event and this is down to our visitors being continuing to have themed seminar halls so well educated, understanding what they the content is easily accessible to our visitors, need to grow their business and going but our exhibitors will benefit further from out on the show floor and acting on it. the increased ROI from better locations. L How would you characterise this year’s event? FURTHER INFORMATION There is a continuous hunger for being inspired nowadays. People love the feeling of



Products & Services


Meeting the design needs of the education sector

The educational way of teaching first aid

Taraflex® from Gerflor is the most widely specified indoor sports surface in the world and has been the number one choice for over 70 years. Available in 17 colours and three wood-effect designs, it’s perfect for meeting the specification and design needs of the education sector. Developed to suit all performance levels and ages whilst offering comfort and safety, users experience a reduction in injuries from bumps and falls and it offers a feeling of enhanced comfort and protection so both children and adults can enjoy their sporting and exercising experience. Its unique triple action Protecsol® surface treatment offers the perfect compromise between grip and slide, providing safe grip and resistance as children accelerate but allowing their

At Lincolnshire Healthcare Training the motto is ‘Fun whilst Learning’, a unique way of learning which includes a wide variety of teaching methods, including games which reinforce the training subject which is found to be more memorable to students. Offering companies, individuals and voluntary organisations a wide range of regulated first aid courses, safer people handling, fire safety, manual handling as well as mental capacity and deprivations of liberties. Each of the courses are taught by trainers who are experts in their field, are consultants, and have extensive on the job nursing experience gained within NHS and private healthcare settings. Teaching children the basics in first aid is now considered to be key in their development and again in this way, Lincolnshire

feet to move freely as they rotate. A skin‑burn free surface, on which the temperature during a fall is reduced by 25 per cent, minimising the risk of friction burns. A popular choice with the education market, providing unrivalled performance and safety across most sporting activities, with over six million children everyday enjoying the benefits of Taraflex® sports flooring. It is extremely durable and cost effective to maintain and various solutions are available to meet the specification needs for every new build and refurbishment project. FURTHER INFORMATION


Urban Planters: Growing cleaner, fresher air in our schools There is a growing awareness of outdoor air quality and its impact on our health, but our indoor air is also often less healthy than it should be. In classrooms, where lots of people congregate and there is little ventilation from open windows, air can get stuffy, stale and contain a lot more CO2 than there should be. Fresh, clean air helps us stay healthy and maintain good levels of concentration, and indoor plants are very effective at removing toxins from the atmosphere while at the same time turning CO2 into revitalizing oxygen. The restorative power of plants in the classroom doesn’t stop there: study after study has shown that attentiveness increases by as much as 70 per cent when plants are used in a



classroom, while productivity and creativity also improve. What’s more, it has also been proven that students with a view of nature are considerably more productive and have a greater sense of wellbeing than those without live plants in sight. Urban Planters is a nationwide plant company with expertise in providing planting within, on and around buildings. Please get in touch to discuss how Urban Planters can make your educational setting greener. FURTHER INFORMATION 0800 358 2245

Healthcare Training strives to ensure this is done at an appropriate stage for them. All of the courses offered by the company are tailored to requirements of each group and are costed competitively. For a no obligation quote for your training requirements please contact the company via the details below. FURTHER INFORMATION Tel: 01526 342112 www.lincolnshire


Creating spaces that allow flexible social working

KwickScreen Acoustics creates unlimited possibilities for students to change their environments to create flexible social working in shared spaces. KwickScreen transforms open plan rooms with its unique flexible portable room partitions and is shortly launching a brand new range of acoustic products for education and work spaces. The company’s portable acoustic partitions will, for the first time, allow students to easily create their own flexible and acoustically sound working spaces. Do you have a space that needs to change for different scenarios? Do you want to offer the best working

environment for students with different needs? Give KwickScreen a call today, and offer students the flexibility to create environments that suit their needs. You’ll have the opportunity to work closely with the company’s product development team to co-create the perfect product that will suit your requirements. For more information on KwickScreen’s new range of acoustic products, and how they could help you transform your space, give the team a call today. FURTHER INFORMATION 0208 452 5972



Keep your business healthy with SPA Training

First aid and safety training specialists

SPA Training (UK) was established in 1995 and has been successfully running training courses since then across the UK. The key to its success has been reliability, flexibility and the quality of delivery plus its 300 trainers strategically placed across the country. SPA delivers the essential training required such as first aid, health and safety and food safety to all levels at very competitive rates. Courses are delivered on your premises at times to suit you and SPA Training is happy to include any site specific information if required. All courses are certificated by recognised awarding bodies such as Highfield Awarding Body for Compliance and Qualsafe Awards. The company’s trainers are all fully qualified in their

ABC is a team of health care professionals with decades of experience in the emergency services who provide professional first aid training. The company believes that this expertise is the key to delivering the best possible training that is vital when dealing with emergency situations. ABC delivers First Aid at Work (FAW) and Emergency First Aid at Work (EFAW) courses for the workplace and also runs Basic Life support/CPR and A.E.D (Defibrillator) courses to both the public and health care professionals. As paramedics, the organisation feels passionately about its training and knows the importance of early recognition and treatment of the most life threatening emergencies. ABC also offers first aid training for students and schools as it believes that Basic Life Support should be learnt from an early

respective fields and have a wealth of experience within the commercial sector. SPA Training provides the best possible training, advice and guidance to enable your staff to improve their personal skills and knowledge and gain the most appropriate qualifications to help them succeed in the workplace. Contact Jules Hutchings for full details of the courses run or visit the website. FURTHER INFORMATION Tel: 01579 324116


age and so has developed fun sessions for students to get some hands on skills. For teachers, support staff or any one working with children, ABC has paediatric courses that fully meet Ofsted requirements which is essential for nurseries schools or anyone working with children. ABC also offers a popular one hour lunch time life saver course which covers the most important life saving skills. This is not a certificated course but offers the chance to train a lot of people in a short period of time on how to save a life. FURTHER INFORMATION


Security providers in Southern England

Catering equipment for the education sector

Frontline Total Security Ltd is one of the main security providers in Southern England and proud to be a part of the Security Industry Authority (ACS) Approved Contractors Scheme. Frontline Total Security like to feel that it is able to offer all its clients the complete security solution. The company’s main area of operation is the supply of security officers to large organisations and blue chip companies. Specialising in security services to the adult care and support marketplace, Frontline services also include event staff for festivals and music events along

The School Catering Equipment website is a purchase order only website specially designed for the education sector. This means there is no need for credit cards of up front payment. Simply fill in your school details, set up your own school account and you can start to order from a comprehensive catalogue of catering equipment on the web specially selected for school and college needs. The company supplies all top brands of catering equipment giving you peace of mind that what you order is of the best quality. With over 20 years of experience in the school

with high volume locations within the leisure industry. Frontline Total Security currently holds SIA Approved Contractors Scheme (ACS) for the provision of Security Guarding, Keyholding A Door Supervision operating from offices in Cornwall & Oxfordshire. FURTHER INFORMATION Tel: 01726 338287

Products & Services


catering sector, be assured that all of the products have been specially chosen to suit your needs, making ordering for your kitchen quick and simple. From ladles for your baked beans, a new counter fridge for your senior school canteen, a colourful salad trolley to jazz up your dining room or full kitchen installation including extract systems, School Catering Equipment provides it all. FURTHER INFORMATION Tel: 0845 309 6355 www.schoolcatering enquiries@schoolcatering



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Recycled & Fire-Rated Sundeala is Europe’s only manufacturer of 100 per cent recycled, 100 per cent recyclable and naturally biodegradable notice boards with a 25-year warranty – including the Class B fire-rated ‘FR Board’ that exceeds the minimum fire performance requirements for schools. Sundeala specialises in serving the education sector with a superior range of visual communications aids. Products include notice boards; pin boards; whiteboards/ dry‑wipe boards; chalkboards/ blackboards; display boards; bulletin boards; tamperproof security boards; writing walls; combination boards; feature walls and wall linings. In addition to offering ready‑made products, Sundeala’s expertise lies in delivering solutions that meet the exacting needs of the client, from low VOC emissions and excellent pin

retention to bespoke designs and the ultimate in lifetime warranted non-combustible porcelain steel writing surfaces. The Sundeala production facility operates from an historic paper mill located in the market town of Dursley, South Gloucestershire. In 1898, Sundeala pioneered the world’s first commercial development of board material made from re‑pulped waste paper. To this day, Sundeala remains the industry benchmark. FURTHER INFORMATION

Use your sports premium funding today Primary PE Planning offers 500 on‑demand, practical, fun and engaging PE lesson plans for your school that any primary teacher would love. Now you can use your Sports Premium Funding to shortcut your way to delivering the most practical, fun and most engaging PE lessons than ever before with the breakthrough online platform, Primary PE Planning. With over ​500 on-demand lesson plans​and video tutorials,​ the platform is believed to offer the widest choice of premium topics and lessons available to any primary school in the UK. From dance, ball skills, multi-skills, imagine PE, and water dodgeball, along with a variety of traditional sports, the platform meets all curriculum requirements. Use your Sports Premium Funding to open this resource

to your teaching team and gain full PE coverage for Early Years, Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2.  Empower primary teachers of any ability in your school to have the tools and confidence to deliver a PE lesson like a sports expert. Best of all your teaching staff will love delivering them, and your pupils will love taking part. Request a free trial today. FURTHER INFORMATION www.​ hello@primarypeplanning. com 0800 799 9537


The publishers accept no responsibility for errors or omissions in this free service ABC First Aid Training 69 American Football 46 Avocor 50 Awesome Apps 60 BioStore 32, 33 CSSC Sports 49 Davies Sports 44 Delaware North 31 Epsom 52 FFT Education 66 Frontline Total Security 69 Fujitsu Inside Front Cover Go Ape Banana 38 GoLandscape 62 Harlequin Floors 14 ISS Facility Services 26 Its a Monthy Thing 42 Kwickscreen 68


Language Magnet Lego Land Windsor Park

54 Inside Back Cover 68 40 36

Lincolnshire Healthcare Longshot Kids Merlin Group Norse Commercial Services 22 PE Passport 44 Physical Education Primary 46 Plum Innovations 57 Primary PE Planning 70 PS Financials 30 Ransomes Jacobsen 64 Raynor Foods 28 Replay Maintenence 44 School Catering Equipment 69 Schoolcomms Back Cover Scotts of Thrapston 20

Sika 18 Spa Training 69 SQuidcard 6 Stage Systems 16 Strictly Education 24 Sundeala 70 Synel Industries 35 Talk Straight & Schools 4 Trend Control Systems 20 TF Installations 16 TG Escapes 10 THB Group 8 The Studio 4 16 UK Catering 30 Unicol Engineering 56 Urban Planters 68 V X International 46 Yeoman Shield 12


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The UK’s best parent app just got better Brand the app with your school logo and colours

FOUR separate packages

Engagement in Learning package

Engagement in Learning – connect parents with their child’s learning, everyday Cashless – get more parents paying and booking online, ahead of time Communication – save time and money with SIMS integrated admin Full Suite – stay fully connected with parents, in one central place

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Education Business 23.3  

Business Information for Education Decision Makers

Education Business 23.3  

Business Information for Education Decision Makers