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Getting behind new tech innovations Educational technology has been on the forefront of the education sector’s mind this January, with the Bett Show displaying the latest innovations.


Education Secretary Damian Hinds opened the show, highlighting the challenges that schools can find themselves in when procuring new technology, such as being overwhelmed with choice and unsure the tech is future-proof. Addressing these issues, we asked our new Expert Panel for their advice on how to get it right when selecting technology on page 47. This month, the government launched a new teacher recruitment and retention strategy which includes more early career support, opportunities for flexible and parttime working, and measures to reduce workload.

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These measures are to boost teacher numbers, which the DfE is finding difficult, having missed its secondary-school recruitment targets for the sixth year running. But recruiting for specialist SEND roles can be even more challenging, as Matt Taylor finds on page 72. Angela Pisanu, editor

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Contents Education Business 24.1 19

07 News

New teacher recruitment strategy boosts early-career support; Faith schools urged to consider academy conversion; White paper gives details on new Welsh curriculum; Online tool to encourage girls into STEM careers

19 Leadership

Imogen Rowley, lead content editor at The Key gazes ahead at 2019 and picks out the five anticpated changes in education to keep an eye on

25 Design & Build

25 39

Although quality targets may be discussed at the start of a school building project, they can often get neglected as deadlines approach and costs rise. But a new, free-to-download Quality Tracker acts as a constant reminder of such targets. RIBA explains how schools can benefit

29 Air Pollution

Poor air quality on London’s streets can contribute to illegally high levels of indoor pollution in some school buildings. This has lead the Mayor of London to put in place measures to improve air quality in and around schools. Education Business reports on the progress so far

33 Groundscare & Landscaping Stephen Ensell, education officer for the British Association of Landscape Industries (BALI), stresses the importance of having an annual maintenance schedule for outdoor spaces and gives some tips for winter maintenance


39 IT & Computing: Computer Science

After reflecting on the responses to its consultation on the matter, Ofqual has reached the decision to assess programming skills through exams from 2022. Education Business reports

43 IT & Computing: Cyber security


With cyber attacks an increasing worry for schools, John Jackson, CEO at London Grid for Learning, discusses what senior leaders can do to ensure they stay cyber safe now and in the future

Education Business magazine

47 Panel of Experts: Technology

Educational technology is hailed as being able to improve learning, enhance teaching and slash workload. But what should schools consider when selecting a new technology solution? We ask our expert panel for their advice


sponsored by

Professor Helen Rogers and Lewie Graham from NMiTE examine why there is a shortage of females studying STEM subjects and entering STEM-related careers, and explore what is being done to correct the situation

57 Play

A new report from the Association of Play Industries (API) has shown a strong link between screen time and children’s inactivity. While parents are urged to act, the report also suggests that schools have the ability to promote active play

61 Sport

The Primary PE and School Sport Premium is proving vital in helping schools make a sustainable and long term improvement to the quality, quantity and impact of PE and sport on children’s wellbeing, learning and achievement

65 Trips

sponsored by

Kim Somerville from campaign group ‘Learning Away’ explains the benefits of taking part in school trips with an overnight stay for the adults involved

69 Resources & Equipment

Last year saw Chancellor Phillip Hammond announce £400m to give schools a one-off payment to buy the “little extras they need”. Education Business reports on what the funding can be spent on and who is eligible


Recruiting for mainstream teachers is a challenge, but what about for special educational needs and disability (SEND) roles? Matt Taylor discusses some of the issues facing schools recruiting in this area as well as some tips for retaining great SEND teachers

79 Fire Safety

BAFE Fire Safety Register explains the importance of competence when it comes to meeting your fire safety obligations – both in terms of your ‘responsible person’ and the suppliers you use Volume 24.1 | EDUCATION BUSINESS MAGAZINE




New teacher recruitment strategy boosts early-career support The government has launched a new teacher recruitment and retention strategy which includes more early career support, opportunities for flexible and part-time working, and a reduction in workload. An Early Career Framework, backed by at least £130 million a year in extra funding when fully rolled out, will be established. It will see new teachers receive a two-year package of training and support at the start of their career, including a reduced timetable to allow teachers to make the most of their training. Extra investment will also be pledged, through the £42million Teacher Development Premium, to roll-out the Early Career Framework. There will be extra financial incentives to encourage talented teachers to stay in the classroom - Bursaries will be reformed to include retention-based payments

for those who stay in the profession by staggering additional payments throughout the first years of their career. The process of applying to become a teacher will be simplified. There will be a new one-stop application system to make applications easier for would-be teachers and making it easier for more people to experience classroom teaching. There will also be measures to reduce teachers’ workload – helping school leaders strip away unnecessary tasks such as data entry; simplifying the accountability system to clarify when a school may be subject to intervention or offered support; and working with Ofsted to ensure staff workload is considered as part of a school’s inspection judgement. The strategy also talks about creating a more diverse range of options for career progression



£2.5m for more international exchange opportunities

Start careers-learning in primary schools, says report

Schools in England will be able to apply for grants to take pupils aged 11 and above to visit partner schools around the world, giving them the chance to experience different cultures, improve language skills and build independence and character. The programme, which will be principally focused on supporting children from disadvantaged backgrounds, will be run in partnership with the British Council. The British Council’s research found that only 39 per cent of secondary schools run international exchanges. For independent schools, the figure is 77%. The research also showed that almost two-thirds of university language students said that an international exchange helped inspire them to choose their degree course. Funding will be targeted at schools with above-average numbers of pupil‑premium students. Over the course of the programme, it is estimated that trips could be funded for 2,900 pupils. Young people will be encouraged to stay with host families abroad where possible, maximising their opportunity to practise language skills and be fully immersed in another culture. To make the scheme as easy as possible for schools to take part in, there will be a simple application process, grants to cover the administrative cost of organising trips, and seminars to help schools without much experience of international visits find partner institutions abroad – in Europe or further afield. Schools can register their interest on the British Council website. READ MORE

Teach First and the Education and Employers charity have publish new research highlighting the importance of getting children to consider their future careers in primary schools. The two charities are calling on policy makers and schools to tackle career stereotypes and narrow aspirations that form in the primary years and last into adulthood. The findings are included in a new report entitled “Career-related learning in primary: The role of primary teachers and schools in preparing children for the future”. The report was commissioned by Teach First with support from the AKO Foundation and undertaken by the Education and Employer charity with DMH Associates. It comes as part of new efforts by Teach First to drive better career-related learning in primary schools across England, to help children see the relevance of their education and opportunities ahead without holding biased assumptions and having narrow aspirations. Despite the best efforts of some primary schools, career-related learning for younger children has not improved. Now, building on the success of Teach First’s Careers and Employability Leadership Programme – which trains middle leaders in secondary schools to take responsibility for careers provision – the charity will look to develop the first careers‑related training programme for teachers and

– helping schools to introduce flexible working practices through a new match-making service for teachers seeking a job-share and developing specialist qualifications and non‑leadership career routes for teachers that want to stay in the classroom, with additional incentives to work in challenging schools.


leaders in primary through pilots in schools serving disadvantaged communities. These pilots would aim to provide careerrelated learning for all children, especially those who have less access to careers expertise outside of school, as is often the case for disadvantaged pupils. The work will tackle issues like career stereotypes which can form early and negatively affect what young people can achieve – with constraints linked to perceptions of social class, intelligence, and opportunities with limiting ideas of ‘men’s work and women’s work’. The pilots will have three main aims: enhancing the understanding of jobs and careers; growing the skills required in a modern labour market; improving pupil outcomes by changing pupil attitudes and enhancing their understanding of what different subjects can lead to. The report from Teach First and Education and Employers charity sets out examples of good career-related learning, despite challenges such as finding space and time in the curriculum to provide opportunities to learn about the world of work. The report identifies that an essential ingredient for successful primary schools is buy-in from senior leadership. It also recommends that primary schools should develop an approach to career-related learning that enables students to engage progressively in a wide range of experiences of transitions and the world of work. Children should have encounters with the world of work from the age of 5 to see the connection between what they learn and what they might want to do in the future. READ MORE Volume 24.1 | EDUCATION BUSINESS MAGAZINE


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New panel to assess home education apps to improve literacy The Department for Education is forming a new advisory panel to assess existing apps to improve education in the home environment, producing guidance for parents on how to use them, and to help them make informed decisions about which have the most educational value. This is part of a drive to improve education at home, especially in disadvantaged households, supporting the DfE’s ambition to halve the proportion of five-year-olds not meeting expected standards in these skills by the time they finish Reception. Representatives from eight organisations including the Lego Group, Clarks, EasyPeasy, HarperCollins, the Confederation of British Industry (CBI), British Land, Oxford University Press and KPMG attended a roundtable on 29 January, led by the National Literacy Trust’s Chief Executive Jonathan Douglas. They discussed the next step in the Government’s campaign to tackle concerning rates of early literacy and communication among disadvantaged families.

The nine businesses join others already involved in work to support parents with improving the home learning environment. These include Addo Foods and HarperCollins, whose projects in this area will range from upskilling their own staff to improve their interaction with disadvantaged families, to providing tools and resources that encourage parents to incorporate reading and communication in everyday activities. Pledges from businesses already signed up include Clarks – where its 6,500 staff will be trained in children’s speech, language and communication development and how to engage with families in stores across the country. HarperCollins will drive a love of reading through author ambassadors, book donations and grants for independent bookshops to support events targeted at children under five and their parents. Addo Foods will support its employees with children aged 0 to five to use its language lab facilities at its Nottingham headquarters to encourage improved communication skills.

WHSmiths will support literacy programmes in Swindon, where there are high levels of illiteracy, including bringing parents into nurseries to help advise on how to support their child’s literacy and language development. British Land and Penguin Random House will work together to provide high-quality children’s books for bookswap schemes launching in three British Land retail sites, building on British Land’s work to reach more than 34,000 primary school children to improve their literacy.




White paper gives details on new Welsh curriculum

New resources to help children spot fake news

A White Paper that lays the legal foundations of the new Welsh curriculum has been launched by Education Minister, Kirsty Williams. The new curriculum will break down traditional subject boundaries and empower teachers to be more innovative. It will introduce Areas of Learning and Experience (AoLEs) that cover the Humanities; Health and Wellbeing; Science and Technology; Languages, Literacy and Communications; Expressive Arts; and Maths. English and Welsh will remain statutory, as will Religious Studies and Relationships and Sexuality Education. Alongside this, the Cross-Curriculum Responsibilities of literacy, numeracy and digital competence will be statutory up to 16 years old. Key stages will be removed. Instead, there will be Progression Steps relating to expectations for learners ages 5, 8, 11, 14 and 16. These will allow teachers to understand each learner’s development – taking into account their individual abilities, experiences and rates of learning and understanding. The changes will ensure that schools can move away from the days of a narrow curriculum and instead give teachers the flexibility to be creative in their teaching. By using this approach practitioners will be able to use their professionalism and expert knowledge to create and design lessons that stretch learners’ abilities and horizons. Kirsty Williams commented: “Wales started on this journey of reform because of a drive to improve standards – we want our young

people to develop higher standards of literacy and numeracy, become more digitally and bilingually competent, and grow to be enterprising, creative and critical thinkers. “I am absolutely clear that to raise standards and extend opportunities, we need to empower schools and teachers by moving away from a narrow, inflexible and crowded curriculum. “This is an exciting time for education in Wales. Not only are we developing a curriculum that ensures our learners are equipped to meet the needs of the future, but we are developing a curriculum through genuine collaboration with our schools and key stakeholders. “I am asking people across Wales to contribute to this debate over the coming weeks and months. The White Paper is ambitious and far-reaching. But we will only reach those high standards through a genuine national mission and conversation.”


New resources to help primary school children spot fake news and build digital literacy skills have been launched BY Discovery Education. These new resources feature contributions from ITN journalists and the Institute for Strategic Dialogue. Special lesson plans and videos will help children to develop a critical eye for the news and social media stories they consume. They will also give pupils an insight into the world of news production, as they hear from ITN’s Charlene White about how journalists fact-check and why it’s important to question where stories come from. The videos are part of a suite of new digital literacy teaching resources produced by Discovery Education as part of the Espresso digital learning service for primary schools. The resources will support teachers to help children navigate the digital world, building their confidence, resilience and critical thinking skills. A Commission on Fake News report published in June 2018 found that only two per cent of children in the UK have the critical literacy skills they need to tell if a news story is real or fake. The new resources are available via the Discovery Education Espresso digital learning service. READ MORE Volume 24.1 | EDUCATION BUSINESS MAGAZINE


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New schemes to help care-leavers into education or work In Bristol, the programme will help 200 care leavers test a new approach using Acceptance & Commitment Theory (ACT) to develop care leavers’ values, aspirations and motivation to succeed. A new team of EET workers will build relationships with care leavers, employers and training providers. In Lewisham, there will be a project to produce a local employment toolkit, develop the Young Minds resilience framework and deliver financial resilience training through The Money House and resolution training. Social Impact Bonds work through funding from social investors who pay for the delivery of the services throughout the project, and are then paid a return based upon the results. Those investing in these programmes will be paid depending on the number of care leavers that achieve employment, education or training outcomes over a four year period.

New projects have been launched to improve the education and training of young people leaving care. Care leavers will benefit from a £5 million investment in programmes that deliver support through personal advisers and transition coaches. The pilot schemes are designed to develop care leavers’ confidence, communications and skills needed to enter sustained education, employment and training. The £5 million is being used to fund the first ever Social Impact Bonds aimed at preventing care leavers being out of work and training – which have previously

been used to tackle problems including homelessness and long-term health issues. The news comes as the latest data on care leavers aged 19-21 show that 39 per cent of care leavers are NEET, compared to 13 per cent of 19-21 year olds in the general population. The Social Impact Bonds bring together the public, private and voluntary sectors to solve these challenges. In Sheffield, the programme will allow for specialist support to be provided through transition coaches working alongside Personal Advisers. The support package will involve support with speech, language and communication needs.



Under 25s think driving should be taught at school

NSMW’s ‘Host a School Chef’ now a year-long programme

Almost half of drivers aged under 25 (44 per cent) think learning to drive is such an important skill, it should be added to the school curriculum A new study from Young Driver asked 1,000 motorists how important driving was to their lives. 39 per cent thought that not driving closes avenues of opportunity and one in five motorists (19 per cent) would be unable to do their job if they didn’t have a driving licence – the equivalent of 6.25 million people. What’s more, forty four per cent of drivers aged under 25 felt that driving gave them self-confidence they wouldn’t otherwise have, with 53 per cent saying passing their test gave them a ‘huge’ confidence boost. This is good news for the one in four parents (25 per cent) who worry about how difficult it is in the modern day for youngsters to feel self-confident. Laura White, marketing manager at Young Driver said: “Driving is a useful skill, which can open up a world of opportunities which might otherwise be impossible. But even beyond that, it also has the ability to give people a sense of freedom and confidence. Sixty five per cent of the drivers we questioned said they enjoyed the feeling of freedom driving gave them, and our research also showed it gave people self‑confidence they wouldn’t otherwise have.” READ MORE

Previously part of the National School Meals Week (NSMW) portfolio of activities, this year Host a School Chef is now a standalone year long programme for the first time. Now in its sixth year, the programme offers school chefs opportunities to work in some of the most exclusive restaurants and venues in the country working alongside some of the most celebrated chefs in the catering industry, demonstrating the breadth and depth of talent of today’s education caterers. This year’s programme has been sponsored by Alaska Seafood. LACA Chair of Events Neil Porter explains: “The success of the Host a School Chef programme over the past five years has exceeded all our expectations and the list of venues that have participated would grace any publication on fine dining. It became clear to us that the demand from school chefs and interest from venues wishing to host chefs, gave us enough reason for LACA to expand the programme and launch it as an event in its own right. “On behalf of the LACA board I am delighted to welcome Alaska Seafood as headline sponsor for 2019 and their support is very much appreciated. It is important for us to continue the development of Host a School Chef and key to our plans was for us to find the right partner that we can work with and that has similar values to our own. Alaska Seafood meets the criteria


perfectly and we believe will a have a significant part to play in helping LACA take Host a School Chef to the next level.” The Ritz Hotel London, Rick Stein’s Marlborough Restaurant, the Chester Grosvenor, Fortnum and Mason, Alyn Williams at the Westbury in Mayfair, L’Enclume in the Lake District and The Walnut Tree in Abergavenny are a few of the establishments that took part last year. Sarah Johnson from Alaska Seafood said: “We recognise the importance of the education catering industry and the role school caterer’s play influencing children’s food choices for the better. We also recognise the challenge of diversifying meal plans encouraging children to be open minded about the food they eat, particularly at a time when the concept of healthy eating is under the spotlight. “LACA’s ‘Host a School Chef’ campaign has shown itself to be a great opportunity for Alaska Seafood to work with school caterers in their quest to provide nutritious meals to children. We know that seafood from Alaska is already being served in school kitchens up and down the country and hope that our sponsorship of this programme will help school chefs with their day to day challenges to persuade children to eat more fish.” READ MORE







Over half of pupils in state‑funded education in an academy or free school

Two-year accelerated degrees approved by MPs

More than 50 per cent of pupils in state-funded schools in England are now studying in an academy or free school, DfE figures have shown. Education Secretary Damian Hinds is urging more schools to consider becoming an academy to enjoy better freedom and opportunities. The Academies Act started in 2010 and gives schools autonomy and freedom to innovate, alongside the increased ability to make decisions in the interests of staff and pupils. This has included measures such as altering the length of the school day or adapting the curriculum to help every child access a school that meets their needs, interests and abilities. More than 8,300 schools in the country have become an academy or opened as a free school, with hundreds of schools choosing to convert to become an academy in the last 12 months alone. The academies programme was introduced by the last Government in 2000 with the aim “to improve pupil performance and break the cycle of low expectation”. By 2010, there were 203 academies – mostly in inner cities. The 2010 Academies Act gave all schools in England the freedom to choose to become an academy and now over 50% of pupils in the state funded education system are taught in an academy or free school. Many sponsored academies - those that have been taken out of Local Authority control through government intervention because of educational underperformance - have improved their inspections from inadequate to good or outstanding. At the end of 2017, only 1 in 10 sponsored academy predecessor schools were judged good or outstanding before they converted, compared to almost 7 in 10 after they became an academy, of those who had been inspected. The DfE has also published analysis of schools that have become sponsored academies in recent years. It matches sponsored academies with similar non‑academies based on inspection results and the make-up of their pupils. It shows that sponsored academies that have been open for longer have made substantial gains in performance. The data shows, in many cases, standards have risen more quickly in under-performing schools that have become academies than in similar council-run schools.


The House of Commons has approved legislation to support the expansion of two-year and other accelerated degrees from September 2019. Students studying shorter university courses – such as three-year courses condensed into two – could save 20 per cent on tuition fees compared to traditional courses. For example, students who opt for a two-year degree will save at least £5,500 in total tuition costs compared to a standard three-year course. The regulations will now go to the House of Lords for approval. In addition to a saving on tuition fees, students will also benefit from a year without paying any maintenance costs through an accelerated course, which would allow them to access the workforce quicker. Accelerated degrees have been a key part of the government’s ambition to maximise choice and flexibility for people wanting to study in higher education, and are expected to remove barriers for a number of underrepresented groups, including mature students. Accelerated degrees offer the same qualifications and are quality-assured in the same way as a standard degree, but delivered over a shorter, more intensive timespan. For example, a two‑year accelerated degree will condense 3-year degrees with 30 weeks’ teaching into 2 years with 45 weeks’ teaching. Universities Minister Chris Skidmore said: “The passing of this legislation is

one of the great modern-day milestones for students and breaks the mould of a one-size-fits all system for people wanting to study in higher education. “For thousands of future students wanting a faster pace of learning and a faster route into the workplace at a lower overall cost, two‑year degrees will transform their choices.” Proposals allow institutions to charge up to 20 per cent more per year for accelerated degrees (in recognition of the increased teaching time required), but the overall tuition fee cost to the student is at least 20 per cent less than the same degree over three years. The 20 per cent increase per year will allow providers to support higher in-year costs for accelerated provision, such as tuition weeks over the summer and administrative staff pay and capital overheads.



GCSE computer science to be assessed by exam from 2022

Ofqual has announced that GCSE computer science will be assessed by exam from 2022. The exams watchdog consulted on the long-term arrangements for assessing programming skills in GCSE computer science towards the end of 2018 following problems with malpractice with course work. Interim arrangements, in which students are expected to complete a programming task during their course, which does not count towards the final grade, were put in place while ofqual consulted on long-term arrangements for assessing programming skills. After reflecting on the 394 responses to the consultation, the decision has been made to assess programming skills through exams from 2022. Exam boards will be free to adopt approaches to assessing programming skills by examination that they feel are most appropriate from

2022 onwards. This affords them the opportunity to consult with stakeholders and be innovative in their approach schools and colleges will confirm to their exam board that their students have been given the opportunity to complete a programming task as part of their course. The current interim arrangements, where schools and colleges must set aside 20 timetabled hours for students to undertake a programming task, will remain in place for students sitting exams up to 2021. Sally Collier, Chief Regulator, said: “We can now give certainty to teachers, schools and colleges about how GCSE computer science will be assessed in the long-term. Our requirements will allow the programming skills to be effectively assessed and mean that all students will have the opportunity to carry out practical programming work as part of their course. “I am also pleased to be encouraging innovation and allowing exam boards to respond to schools and colleges in a way that works for them. We were encouraged by the level of support for our proposals.” READ MORE



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Online tool to encourage girls into STEM careers A new online resource has been developed to help teachers, careers advisors and parents engage girls in a different way with STEM subjects. The resource, developed by WISE, the campaign to improve gender balance in STEM, helps girls to identify their personality types, shows them the sorts of roles in STEM that they could do, and matches them to role models who share their personality type to learn more about STEM careers. Helen Wollaston, Chief Executive Officer for WISE explains: “At A Level, only one in ten computer science students and one in five physics students are female. When you take out health, fewer than 1 in 5 of science, technology and engineering jobs in the UK are held by women. We simply

have to get better at showing girls that maths, science and technology open doors to exciting, well-paid jobs where they can make a real difference to the world.” My Skills My Life, for girls between 11-19, was developed to address the stereotype that science, engineering and technology are more suited to boys than girls. Helen continues: “The resource uses mobile technology to connect girls with young women who have found great jobs using science, technology or maths. It is a simple, modern solution, accessible to every teenage girl in the country.” WISE aims to reach 200,000 girls with the free to use online resource which is part of its ongoing work in schools providing career workshops delivered by real life female

scientists, technologists and engineers. Since their launch three years ago, the workshops have reached over 6,500 girls.



Faith schools urged to consider academy conversion The Education Secretary Damian Hinds has hosted a round-table with representatives from all major faiths to discuss benefits of academy status. The round-table was attended by representatives from all major faiths and saw Damian Hinds set out the benefits of becoming an academy school – placing freedom into the hands of school leaders and helping schools to work together to achieve more than they can alone. The Education Secretary also praised the role faith organisations have had in the Government’s education reforms since 2010, with more than a quarter of state-funded faith schools already having academy status and more than 100 faith free schools open or due to open soon. The figures reflect an upturn in the pace of academy conversion within faith groups, with more groups now also establishing their own multi academy trusts.

Representatives from all major faiths attended the meeting, including individuals from the Church of England, Muslim, Catholic, Sikh, Jewish and Hindu faiths, and from the Methodist Church. They were joined by leaders of high performing faith multi-academy trusts – Hamid Patel of Star Academy Trust, Nitesh Gor of Avanti Schools Trust and Dr Brinder Mohan Singh of Nishkam School Trust. These trusts are examples of faith groups combining their own ethos and values with the freedom and autonomy that academies and free schools enjoy, to create thriving schools providing the education their pupils deserve. Director of the Catholic Education Service, Paul Barber, said: “The Catholic Church has been a longstanding Government partner in the provision of education, and today’s meeting highlights the continued strong working relationship we enjoy with the Department.

“Nearly a quarter of all Catholic schools in England are academies and we welcome the continued support of the Secretary of State for Catholic dioceses and their academisation plans. “As the country’s second largest provider of schools, we remain committed to providing high quality Catholic education centred around the formation of the whole child.”



Consent education to be part of PSE teaching resources in Scotland New resources to address sexual harassment and sconsent education guidance have been recommended as part of a review of Personal and Social Education (PSE) in Scotland. This will enable a more consistent approach in responding to the issues young people face today. The updated guidance will strengthen the delivery of age and stage appropriate consent education and new resources will address the issue of sexual harassment, both in schools and online, will be developed. The review also recommends updating guidance on mental health support available to pupils and staff and says schools should engage with pupils in the

design and delivery of PSE classes. Deputy First Minister John Swinney said: “Personal and Social Education is critical to giving young people the knowledge, skills and resilience to navigate the various stages of their lives and reach their full potential. “Pupils have told us that PSE needs to be more relevant, empathetic and informative and must reflect the issues facing young people today. Updated consent education will be stage and age appropriate, will involve young people in the design and delivery of classes and will deliver more consistent teaching at all levels. “The recommendations will also ensure a high standard of learning and support

in mental, physical and emotional wellbeing and will give pupils greater access to mental health support.” An implementation group, jointly chaired by Cosla and the Scottish Government, will take forward the review’s recommendations.






Transparency of academies called into question

There has been a succession of high-profile academy failures that have been costly and damaging to children’s education, the Public Accounts Committee has heard. Some academy trusts have misused public money through related-party transactions and paying excessive salaries. While the Education and Skills Funding Agency (the ESFA) is taking steps to control executive pay and related party transactions,

these actions are as yet unproven and in isolation will not prevent abuse. Academy trusts are now responsible for educating nearly half of all children in state‑funded schools in England, but they are not sufficiently transparent or accountable to parents and local communities. Parents and local people have to fight to obtain even basic information about their children’s schools and academy trusts do not do

enough to communicate and explain decisions that affect the schools they are responsible for and how they are spending public money. The accounts of individual academy trusts, and for the sector as a whole, are not yet as useful and accessible to users as they should be. The inquiry also says that concerns highlighted nearly two years ago have not been addressed. First, despite the funding pressures the sector is facing, neither Ofsted nor the ESFA is assessing the impact of these pressures on the quality of education and the outcomes schools achieve. Second, almost a quarter of schools have still not provided the information that the Department needs to understand fully the extent of asbestos in school buildings. READ MORE


Welsh pupils to learn new languages at an earlier age Pupils will start learning different languages in primary school as part of Wales’ new curriculum. In the new curriculum, Modern Foreign Languages will be included within International Languages. This would also include community languages, classical languages and British Sign Language (BSL). Learners would experience international languages at an earlier age and will be in addition to Welsh and English. Changes are also proposed to the way that Welsh is taught, with the language remaining compulsory for all learners aged 3-16 – alongside English – but no longer separated into first and second language Programmes of Study. While it would be up to schools to decide how they approach this, they would need to think about opportunities for learners to listen, read, speak and write in Welsh – this

might be through use in different parts of the curriculum or outside the classroom. In the longer-term, qualifications for Welsh, English and International Languages would also change. Qualifications Wales are currently considering how qualifications should change in line with the new curriculum. Welsh Education Minister Kirsty Williams said: “This marks the most dramatic shift in the way languages are taught in Welsh schools since the introduction of the National Curriculum in 1988. “We want all our learners to be citizens of both Wales and the world and that means ensuring that all young people from all backgrounds have an opportunity to develop their language skills – whether that’s in Welsh, English or international languages. “We know these changes will take time and that’s why we won’t be taking a big bang approach. We’re committed

to giving schools the time and resources they need to adjust. That’s why I recently announced £24 million over and above what already goes into curriculum support.” A Curriculum and Assessment White Paper is to be published for consultation shortly. This will set out the proposed changes that are needed to support the introduction of the new Curriculum when the phased roll out commences from 2022.



DfE launches energy ‘price comparison’ website for schools The Department for Education has launched an energy ‘price comparison’ site to help schools get the best deals. Launched by the Education Secretary Damian Hinds, the site allows schools to get instant quotes from a range of gas and electricity firms and will help schools avoid fees charged by energy brokers. The latest figures from 2016/17 show state‑funded schools in England spent more than £584 million on gas and electricity. The average secondary school

spends around £90,000 a year on energy. Using the Department for Education’s existing energy deals, schools have already reported savings of up to 14% – the price comparison website will help build on this. Due to the complexity of schools’ energy needs, many currently have to go through brokers, which can incur high fees. These can be as much as 5p per kilowatt hour – which can add up to thousands of pounds per year. The new website will allow schools to bypass brokers’ fees and deal directly with

suppliers, inputting information about their energy use to generate tailored, transparent quotes, which they can then compare. It will also list providers offering renewable energy, giving schools a simple way to reduce their environmental impact. The website was developed with Crown Commercial Service. READ MORE




2 0 1 9 What to expect from education in 2019 Imogen Rowley, lead content editor at The Key gazes ahead at 2019 and picks out the five anticpated changes in education to keep an eye on 2018 was a big year for education: Damian Hinds took up the mantle of education secretary, the long-awaited GDPR wreaked havoc in school offices across the country, and there was a steady stream of grumblings about Ofsted and the DfE. As we arrive, slightly bruised but smiling, at the threshold of a new year, gazing into our crystal ball for any hint of what the next 12 months might hold, here are five anticipated changes to keep an eye on. 1. Curriculum takes centre stage: inspection changes How could we talk about education in 2019 without mentioning Ofsted’s new inspection framework? Due for release in September, it promises a shift in focus from pupil outcomes (exam results) to the “real substance of education” – a school’s curriculum – with a new ‘quality of education’ judgement. Despite much speculation to the contrary, the ‘outstanding’ grade is here to stay. However, chief inspector Amanda Spielman isn’t happy that ‘outstanding’ schools are exempt from routine inspections, with some going more than 10 years without a visit. Ofsted has been pushing the DfE hard to agree to more regular inspections and cough up the necessary funding. Schools minister Nick Gibb threw it a bone in December when he said he wanted Ofsted to inspect 10 per cent of outstanding schools, but he added that the exemption will remain.

We wait to see how this one plays out. There will be a consultation on the new framework in January, but the general feeling in the sector is that it’s a step in the right direction: the current inspection model has long been considered the key driver behind excessive teacher workloads. However, questions linger around how exactly schools will be held accountable in a post-data era, and some yearn for stability after years of academisation and exam reforms.

motion. Its five-year strategy also indicates an intention to “better scrutinise education, training and care structures, including at MAT level”, and its most recent annual report says: “We look forward to engaging with the DfE as it develops the secretary of state’s plans for greater MAT accountability”. The decision rests with the DfE. However, there is resistance to the idea, particularly around whether Ofsted has the necessary experience and/or expertise in how MATs function, the overlap with the role of regional school commissioners, and whether there’s enough funding – especially as Ofsted wants to more frequently inspect ‘outstanding’ schools too.

3. Budgets continue to shrink, particularly for SEND It will come as no surprise that school funding is under siege. One recent survey from the Association of School and College Leaders revealed that 60 per cent of the responding schools predict they will be in deficit in the next financial year, and things don’t show any signs of letting up. The situation is particularly acute for SEND funding, with some saying the system is in 2. More accountability for MATs crisis. Five councils are, or could be, involved Also from Camp Ofsted, 2019 could be the in legal action about their decisions to year that we finally get some clarity cut high needs funding, and one on whether it will inspect MATs. campaign group is crowdfunding We know that Amanda to take Damian Hinds and DfE Spielman is particularly the DfE to court, saying statistic committed to the idea, that central government s show a saying that the current is responsible for the   2 5 per cent dr system of ‘focused SEND funding crisis. inspections’ - where The latest figures show numbe op in the r o Ofsted inspects a few that a further one f t e ac from Eu representative schools million pupils were rope ap hers plying for QTS in a MAT and sends a on SEND support in in Eng letter to the trust – offers January 2018 compared during land only a “limited view”. to the previous year: a Ofsted completed a trend that doesn’t look 2017-1 8 small pilot over summer to be slowing down. 2018 in which it exercised The basic structure of top-up more authority by meeting with funding isn’t changing in 2019/20, trust leaders instead of sending them a with transfers between the schools and high letter, so the winds of change could be in needs blocks restricted to 0.5 per cent. E



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 This could in effect penalise more inclusive schools and could lead to a rise in incidents of “off-rolling”. Ofsted’s annual report articulates concern that pupils with SEND are permanently excluded five times more often than other pupils. The DfE bowed to pressure from schools and the media in December and announced an extra £350m cash injection for councils to help support pupils with SEND, but many are saying this doesn’t go far enough – the Local Government Association predicts a £536million shortfall this year alone. We can probably expect to see more protests like the headteachers’ march on Westminster back in September and a rise in the number of parent campaign groups as funding pressures continue to bite. 4. The ‘B’ word There’s no getting away from it: at least in theory, we’re set to leave the European Union on 29 March 2019. For schools, Brexit looks likely to hit teacher recruitment the hardest, and it’s already begun: DfE statistics show a 25 per cent drop in the number of teachers from Europe applying for QTS in England during the 2017-18 financial year, compared to the previous year. This will have a huge impact in particular on modern foreign language (MFL) teaching - to meet current demand, a quarter of all MFL graduates need to go into teaching. Cutting off this vital life source from the continent will only increase pressure on the sector in a time of already considerable strain: the DfE has failed to hit its own teacher recruitment target for six years in a row, and pupil numbers in secondaries are predicted to rise until 2025. A common visa system for skilled workers – including teachers – has been proposed by the Migration Advisory Committee, but it recommends a salary threshold of £30,000: higher than most class teacher salaries. School budgets can’t take the increased strain, so the government will have to step up and diversify its home-grown teacher recruitment plans over the next few years to make up for a shortfall from Europe.  We can also expect to see a drop in the number of school trips and cultural enrichment opportunities abroad, as red tape most likely makes foreign travel more expensive and logistically challenging for everyone. We’ll all have to work harder to ensure our pupils continue to see themselves as global citizens, excited by – and given fair access to – the opportunities that await in the wider world. 

There will be a further formal consultation in this year, but considering the unpopularity of coasting standards, we can presume that a change will be welcomed. The DfE has also said it’ll consider whether being judged ‘requires improvement’ by Ofsted will be “part of the trigger for an offer of support”. L

Imogen Rowley is a lead content editor at The Key, which provides leadership and management support to schools. All predictions here are based on crystal ball gazing and information available at the time of writing, in early December 2018. FURTHER INFORMATION

5. Floor and coasting standards set to change The DfE is planning to scrap floor and coasting measures, used to judge school performance, and replace them with a single ‘data standard’ from September 2019. Currently, there’s no word on what this will look like, but the idea is that there’ll be a single, transparent data-based trigger for schools to be offered support. We imagine that the Department will either pitch the new threshold somewhere between the two existing measures (so, for secondary schools, a progress 8 somewhere between -0.5 and -0.25), or they’ll set the score closer to the coasting standard, but increase the level of intervention based on how far below it the school falls, or how long it has been below it. 



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Design & Build

Tracking quality in school building projects Although quality targets may be discussed at the start of a school building project, they can often get neglected as deadlines approach and costs rise. But a new, free-to-download Quality Tracker acts as a constant reminder of such targets. RIBA explains how schools can benefit Quality in construction is a quicksilver concept, especially in complex project environments such as upgrading a school. One stakeholder’s understanding of it is rarely the same as another’s. In any case, ambitions for quality are curtailed by time and cost. For example, a head teacher’s top concern will be for spaces that promote good behaviour in the pupils, support the teaching staff, and improve educational outcomes, all without blowing the budget. Compare that to the building contractor, whose concern might be simply to meet the brief and comply with regulations while maximising its profit. If it is operating the building for 25 years under a PFI contract, there could be reasonable overlap between its aspirations and the school head’s. If it isn’t, the two are likely to be quite far apart. This is a problem for the dilapidated schools estate, which, in a climate of limited resources, needs to squeeze every penny of value out every pound spent on its upgrade. The issue is all the more pressing in the wake of the Edinburgh Schools inquiry in 2017. It found that the poor workmanship that led to the dangerous collapse of a wall at Oxgangs school were widespread and systemic. How can new school buildings hope to facilitate improved educational outcomes when they barely meet minimum regulations? Risks to quality Partly in response, the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), along with the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors and the Chartered Institute of Building, have just produced a digital tool called the Quality Tracker to resolve the situation. A slight misnomer, it is in fact a protocol for tracking risks to quality. The system works like this. Clients decide to use it, thereby setting up a chain of custody for passing on quality risk information transparently to the whole project team. As new parties

the Building Schools for the Future programme join, each commits to using the system. At (BSF) it replaced in 2012, PSBP’s governing the end of every project stage, the team credo is to award contracts to the lowest bidder agrees where the project stands in relation so long as minimum standards are met. to the risks. On completion, the information, These standards are embodied in generic which is summarised in a simple red-amberbaseline designs, supported by a couple green scorecard, is passed on to the first of briefing guides (Building Bulletins) new owner, tenant, or asset manager. that set out minimum expectations for From schools’ point of view, the benefits the performance of teaching spaces. are that it gives clients a tool to keep risks The baseline designs aren’t meant to be to quality – and thus the blueprints for the actual design of new importance of quality – in buildings. How could they, when prethe project team’s sights The existing conditions at specific sites for the duration. The Quality are all so different? And yet they chain of custody Tracker have been interpreted in that format and focus way, leading to the evolution on risks mean risks to tool keeps q u of many different proprietary that objectives a li t y and the imp one-size-fits-all can’t so easily o quality in rtance of designs that are trimmed to be bulldozed t h e fit once a contract is won. by pressures of p r o team’s s je Architects diagnose time and cost. ights fo ct r the dura several problems with this. What’s more, it is tion. Caroline Buckingham is an deliberately simple architect with extensive experience and straightforward of school projects. These ‘schoolsto set up and maintain. in-a-box’, as she calls them, mean that The guide that accompanies designs can no longer respond to schools’ it argues that since the construction bespoke visions, which is ‘stifling’ quality. industry’s understanding of how to achieve Another architect, Caroline Mayes, Stride long-term quality is incomplete, tracking Treglown’s head of schools and colleges, it is difficult. Instead, it flags up risk agrees, identifying linking spaces – corridors, factors that, according to the collective halls, and stairs – as one of the few ways experience of consultees, reduce the to add value. “When the design of teaching likelihood of achieving good quality. spaces is so inflexibly specified, they’re all we can use to tailor a school to its site.” How does this relate Mayes also highlights structural barriers to to school procurement? quality. She believes that being given a mere The DfE’s Priority School Building Programme six weeks to design a school from scratch is (PSBP), the chief source of public funding for simply not long enough, and rather ironic when capital works in this country, has tried to cut the same time pressures appear not to apply to its coat according to its cloth. In contrast to the Department for Education in negotiating contracts, for example. Also, the fact that under the PSBP E

Brannel School designed by HLM Architects ©Trevor Burrows Photography



Gerflor gets top marks for its flooring in newly-built £10 million Welsh Primary School Work on the brand-new £10.8m flagship school Pencoed Primary School has now been completed with the school bell ringing for the first time at start of the Autumn term earlier this year. When pupils walked through the doors, it was the first time that the whole primary school had been on one single site since the old school was built in the early 1900s. For more than a century, there were separate infant and junior sections. When the school needed flooring for this massive new build project they turned to international flooring specialists Gerflor to deliver a fantastic selection of fit for purpose, future-proof solutions. The installation would fall into the capable hands of Floor Furnishings based in Cardiff. Nick Jefferies, managing director, Floor Furnishings commented: “We initially had an enquiry through BAM Construction which was then specified through the Architect to us.” The range of specified Gerflor products would be extremely varied and include their award-winning Taralay Impression Control and Taralay Impression Comfort, their Tarasafe Ultra and Ultra H20 complemented by an amount of Mural Calypso shower wall, together with some 300m2 of


Taraflex Multi-Use sports flooring. With over-70 years’ experience Gerflor has honed their expertise in safety flooring to produce the highest standards of safety and durability, coupled to delivering stunning, beautiful designs that are both inspirational and eye-catching. In 2016 Gerflor won the CFJ/CFA Product of the Year category with their Taralay Impression Control safety flooring range. Jason Burton MCIAT, principal architectural assistant, Bridgend County Borough Council commented: “We have a long-standing working relationship with Gerflor formed over years of specifying and dealing with their products. They have many design options within each range, affording us the opportunity to be as creative as possible. Their pre-sales and specification support are exemplary and after care equally so.” Gerflor’s Tarasafe Ultra H20 was the ideal solution for the school in the changing room and showering areas. Intended for traditional barefoot spaces where there are continuous wet areas, Tarasafe Ultra H20 also offers a shod solution, providing a perfect blend of flooring applications for those areas where wet flooring conditions can be an issue. On specification criteria Nick Jefferies

said: “We have used Gerflor products on numerous occasions and try to specify them wherever we can and are always very pleased with the final result.” Commenting further on the project Jason Burton added: “We have used Gerflor many times and were delighted with the outcome. We had numerous discussions with the head teacher and the colour and finish selections were co-ordinated with a lot of the loose furniture options that the school selected. Overall the result has been very well received.” FURTHER INFORMATION

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Design & Build

Hawkins\Brown recently designed Ivydale Primary School © Jack Hobhouse

 the ultimate users are often not the decision-makers is a problem. “Because centrally managed rules are applied rigidly, they are not always right for individual schools,” Mayes said. In the six years since its launch, the PSBP may have improved the cost per new school and speeded up delivery, but it is far from clear that it has produced the quality we want. Speed and economy are meaningless if new school facilities are not also cheap and easy to operate and long-lived. And even then, all the public goods that arise from better educational outcomes may not materialise. In short, the jury is out on whether the PSBP is value for money. Post occupancy evaluations One way to check would be to learn from past experience. Although there is a contractual requirement to carry out post-occupancy evaluations (POEs) under the PSBP, so far the resulting information has yet to be shared with industry. In 2016, the RIBA published their Better Spaces for Learning report, which concluded that the PSBP could provide better value for money, and that data in POEs would reveal how. Caroline Buckingham was one

of its authors and, through their Design Liaison Forum, is still pushing for the ESFA (Education and Skills Funding Agency) to share POE information more freely. POEs tend to investigate things that are comparatively easy to measure, such as electricity usage, temperature control, and running costs, but this is only part of the picture. Many other intangible factors are at play but, because they are not so easily measured, are discounted from assessments of quality. For instance, research in 2014 found for the first time that certain specific aspects of visual style in primary schools – such as the shape of rooms and the use of colour – combined with aspects measured in POEs, make a statistically significant difference to educational outcomes. This highlights one of the biggest problems for the construction industry: how can it aim for quality if it is still learning what causes it? For formal processes like the Design Quality Indicators (DQIs), this is problematical. DQIs are used to articulate the client’s starting ambition for quality and thereafter to monitor how well those ambitions are being achieved during the course of the project. They are useful. Trouble is, if we don’t know the full causes of quality, how can it be monitored?

Post-occupancy evaluations (POEs) tend to investigate things that are comparatively easy to measure, such as electricity usage, temperature control, and running costs, but this is only part of the picture.

Opening the conversation That is why the Quality Tracker tracks risks to quality instead and why the RIBA and its institutional sponsors have such high hopes for it. Nigel Ostime of Hawkins\ Brown Architects chaired the Working Group responsible. “It forces the conversation. It shines a light on the tripwires that typically reduce the chance of good quality.” Value for money is clearly a worthy objective. However, there is suspicion that the swing towards lowest cost has been at the expense of minimum quality. The Quality Tracker can swing it back again. Buckingham said: “It’s not about bells and whistles. It’s about delivering a learning environment. We want to go beyond merely fit-for-purpose to give staff and children a little bit extra by being creative about the solutions. That’s what’s been lost with the PSBP.” Hawkins\Brown’s recently completed Ivydale Primary School, which was commissioned under the BSF programme, emphasizes the point. It won an RIBA London Region Award. In a video about the project, head teacher Helen Ingham said: “We’ve seen an immediate improvement in behaviour just generally around the school. It’s absolute proof to us that actually the school environment makes a huge difference to how children learn.” The Quality Tracker is currently being piloted. If you are involved in a capital building project, the RIBA urges you to take part. L FURTHER INFORMATION



Off-site construction battles the on-going school place crisis in Greater Manchester

Although the looming school crisis was first brought to people’s attention back in 2009/2010, the problem has continued to grow in Greater Manchester with 1 in 10 children now being taught in oversized primary classes. So what is the solution?

Contracts were awarded for the six schools in the second phase of these works in August 2017, all of which were delivered in time for the start of the new school year in September 2018 - a critical driver for using offsite construction.

Off-site manufacturing takes the construction of the building off the critical path, which is why it is the approach preferred by many. Site works including foundations, services and external works can be simultaneously completed whilst construction of the building itself takes place in the factory. Working on a Lean production process, combined with just-in-time manufacturing ensures materials and labour are in place and the buildings move down a flow line; as this all takes place within a quality controlled factory environment, there is no disruption due to rain, frost or snow delays maximising programme certainty.

The scheme was Manchester City Council’s first scheme to be delivered with a fully integrated BIM Level 2 Asset Information Model, and all schools achieved BREEAM Very Good. Early engagement with the supply chain was crucial to ensuring all data required for this was captured.

Premier Modular’s 25 acre site with 5 factories can deliver a minimum of 1800m2 of buildings per week, equating to a 2FE primary school every two weeks. Modules are constructed to exacting quality levels in a controlled environment, u-values are higher than building regulations and exceptional airtightness ratings can be achieved. Up to 75% of the buildings are manufactured offsite, greatly reducing the risk of accidents on site. Disruption is minimised, with reduced transport to site and waste minimised as materials are cut to size. In order to relieve the pressure on school places in Manchester, the City Council used government grant funding to progress the development of 10 schools in record time.

Although one base model was developed for the overall scheme, using offsite manufacturing has meant that design changes could be accommodated to incorporate the differing end-user requirements of the schools. In a market requiring an increased rate of build, building standards are increasing and sustainability is of growing importance, Premier’s offsite construction has to be the only the solution.

Air Pollution

Improving toxic air in the capital’s schools Poor air quality on London’s streets can contribute to illegally high levels of indoor pollution in some school buildings. This has lead the Mayor of London to put in place measures to improve air quality in and around schools. Education Business reports on the progress so far A new report commissioned by the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan predicts that as a result of London’s action to improve air quality, no schools in the capital will be exposed to illegally high levels of air pollution by 2025. The report, which was carried out by air quality and climate change emissions consultants Aether, found that the number of primary schools in areas exceeding legal limits for harmful NO2 is projected to drop dramatically from 371 in 2013 to just four in 2020. The number of secondary schools is expected to fall from 82 in 2013 to only one in 2020, with no schools at all in high polluting NO2 areas by 2025. So what is the Mayor of London doing to achieve these targets? Assessing the situation To understand the impact of air pollution on schools, last year, the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan commissioned a report assessing indoor air quality at five London primary schools and one nursery. The study by University College London and the University of Cambridge, found differences in pollution levels between classrooms depending on a range of factors, including building characteristics, design and maintenance. A significant proportion of indoor air pollution is due to outdoor air pollution. For NO2, which was strongly related to the risk of asthma attacks and asthmatic symptoms, outdoor sources accounted for 84 per cent of the variation between classrooms, highlighting the importance of tackling emissions from road traffic and preventing it from entering the building.

One such school that has implemented a range of measures to improve its air quality is St Mary’s Bryanston Square Primary School in Westminster, close to the busy Marylebone Road. The school has installed and tested a new filtration system to reduce pollution inside the school. This is being delivered with £20,000 in funding from the Mayor and Westminster Council. This coming summer, the school will trial a year-long closure of the busy road, Measures to improve air quality Enford Street, outside its entrance, to traffic Some of London’s most polluted primary at the start and end of the school day. schools have started to implement The staff car park has been turned measures to help protect pupils for into a garden and all staff and polluted air, with help from a £1 million pupils are encouraged to walk, fund from the Mayor of London. cycle or use public transport. Detailed air quality audits were carried out The school has also worked with in 50 schools across 23 London boroughs. The British Land to install a ‘green wall’ – a audits assessed the air quality in some of the variety of plants across a playground capital’s worst polluted schools and have made wall – to screen students playing a series of recommendations to protect pupils. outside from nearby traffic pollution. These include major infrastructure measures, Pupils have also been involved in a ‘nosuch as closing roads or moving playgrounds engine idling’ campaign to help educate and school entrances, as well as targeting their parents on reduce harmful emissions. indoor pollution using improved ventilation Emily Norman, headteacher at St Mary’s systems, and installing green ‘pollution Bryanston Square Primary School, said: “Air barrier’ hedges, tackling engine idling outside quality is a big concern here at St Mary’s schools and promoting cycling and walking. School. Our children are extremely The audits were conducted by global aware of the dangers, both engineering consultancy WSP, for their own health and who spent three months in Five for the community at schools assessing indoor nurserie large. We’re working and outdoor air pollution s in Lond to combat this sources, looking at how o n will be triall problem ourselves, students travel to school, filtratio ing a new air by encouraging and reviewing local n syste more sustainable walking routes including m s to their ef travel options, traffic crossings. fectiven test e campaigning to s s at redu cing stop vehicle idling at indoor the school gates, and pollutio n. turning the carpark into a garden. The children have led the way by monitoring traffic on nearby roads. “We are very pleased to be part of the Mayor’s air quality audit, as it has identified ways to tackle air quality, such as closing the street to traffic at key points in the school day and air filtration inside the classrooms. This will make a real difference to our children’s well-being at school, and significantly enhance the school’s work in this area.” 50 of the audited schools have received a £10,000 starter grant, and other London schools located in areas exceeding legal air pollution limits can apply for green infrastructure funding. E The findings suggested that the protection offered by the building increased the further away it was from the busiest roads and that airtight buildings may offer greater protection. The report also found that in most classrooms annual exposure to small particles was higher than recommended World Health Organization guidelines, although this was caused by a combination of indoor and outdoor sources.



Poor air quality on streets can contribute to high levels of indoor pollution in school buildings to tackle their air quality issues. This audit process takes a truly multidisciplinary approach, with input from WSP’s air quality, transport, buildings and energy specialists, and can now be rolled out for other schools in London which are most affected by air pollution.” Westminster City Council Leader, Cllr Nickie Aiken, said: “We welcome The Mayor’s efforts to improve air quality across London - his support and funding will help us to reduce pollution around our schools. “With over one million daily visitors Westminster suffers some of the worst pollution and air quality is the number one concern for our residents. To demonstrate our commitment to improving air quality we are pleased to announce that we will match fund the Mayor’s scheme for schools in our borough. “Air quality is a national issue and there are no miracle cures but by working together we can make a big difference locally.” Nurseries The Mayor of London has now launched a programme of air quality audits at nurseries in some of the most polluted parts of London. The audits will target sources of indoor and outdoor pollution, with five of the 20 nurseries trialling new air filtration systems to test their effectiveness at reducing indoor pollution. They will focus on reducing NO2, PM10 and PM 2.5 as research shows children

Air Pollution

 Other measures Poor air quality on London’s streets can contribute to illegally high levels of indoor pollution in some school buildings, which is why the Mayor has rapidly introduced measures to cut traffic emissions including the T-Charge in central London for the oldest, more polluting vehicles and bringing forward the Ultra-Low Emission Zone to April 2019. London Boroughs have been provided with a total of £237 million by TfL to help them manage their streets. They will be encouraged to use some of this to deliver the transport recommendations around the audited schools, which will also support the Healthy Streets approach. The Mayor has also developed a toolkit to help boroughs apply the audits approach to other schools located in areas exceeding legal pollution limits. The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “Air pollution is a national health crisis that is putting the health of children at risk. As Mayor, I’ve moved fast in London to implement the most ambitious plans to tackle air pollution of any major city in the world. This includes cleaning up our bus and taxi fleets, bringing forward the introduction of the world’s first Ultra-Low Emission Zone and introducing the Toxicity Charge – T-Charge – for the oldest polluting vehicles in central London. Glenn Higgs, associate director at WSP, said: “We are delighted to have worked with the GLA, school communities and boroughs to develop recommendations which will make a real difference to the health and wellbeing of children at 50 primary schools by helping

exposed to these smaller pollution particles and gases are more likely to grow up with lung problems and to develop asthma. The audits will also review a range of methods to reduce pollution outside nurseries, including restricting road access outside entrances at drop off and collection times, moving playgrounds away from congested roads, installing green ‘pollution barrier’ hedges, tackling engine idling and promoting cycling and walking. The £250,000 programme is funded as part of the Mayor’s Air Quality Fund and audits will be conducted by WSP, who will spend the next few weeks in the nurseries, assessing indoor and outdoor air pollution sources, looking at how children travel to the nurseries, and reviewing local walking routes including traffic crossings. These will be the first City Hall trials of indoor filtration, beginning in spring 2019, with results expected later in the year, alongside a toolkit that can be given to all non-participating nurseries so they can conduct their own audits. Built into the programme is a ring-fenced starter grant of £4,500 for the 20 nurseries to help kick-start recommendations on completion of the audits. L FURTHER INFORMATION

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IN A CLASS OF ITS OWN. The Ransomes TR320. MADE FOR SCHOOLS. The TR320 is perfect for maintaining school pitches and surrounding areas. With the ability to cut and collect, you can rest assured that a clean, pristine finish will be achieved on cricket and football pitches, as well as longer grassed areas. The winning combination of narrow transport width, a productive width-of-cut and superior manoeuvrability makes negotiating tight spaces, courtyards, and building surrounds a breeze.

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Groundscare & Landscaping Volume 24.1 | EDUCATION BUSINESS MAGAZINE

Written by Stephen Ensell, education officer, the British Association of Landscape Industries (BALI)

Winter care for your green spaces

there are still tasks that need to be carried out to keep everything not only looking shipshape but also safe for the people that use and travel through these areas. Grass will continue to grow at a minimum temperature of 14 degrees Celsius, so mowing may continue into the months that are unseasonably mild, subject to the weather and areas being dry enough. Leaves and plant debris will need to be removed from grassed area to prevent lawns Stephen Ensell, education officer for the British Association of from dying and from walkways and hard Landscape Industries (BALI), stresses the importance of having an surfaces to prevent pedestrians slipping and the surfaces becoming stained. annual maintenance schedule for outdoor spaces and gives some Plant and shrub growth will need to be tips for winter maintenance checked and cut back appropriately if it is overhanging walk ways, cars parks or The importance of maintenance of outdoor Create a schedule obscuring lines of sight for vehicles and spaces cannot be over emphasised. Carrying out the appropriate maintenance at pedestrians on the property. Rejuvenative We maintain our cars, heating systems, the correct time of year for outdoor spaces – pruning can take place throughout the winter machinery, our houses, and even our whether landscaped areas, sports fields and presents an opportunity to cut health, because we recognise that a regular and surfacing, playgrounds or back hard those deciduous maintenance schedule prolongs their life car parks – is of paramount shrubs that have become Whilst and helps reduce the risk of things going importance, so if you haven’t overgrown, giving them a we may wrong and potentially causing injury. done so already, a yearly chance to produce new b e good a t makin The green spaces and sports surfaces that maintenance schedule healthy growth, which g sure outdoo surround our schools and businesses are should be created to in turn will produce a no different, especially in terms of safety help you keep on top healthier shrub with well loo r spaces are ked afte and prolonging the life and usefulness of these areas and plan improved flowering; r in warm m of these areas. These spaces are often for the maintenance By evaluating onths, w the e may neglect the first thing that people see when they activities that will need any areas of soil that them co arrive, and we all know the importance to be undertaken. have been used as a t h e winte me of first impressions, but it’s for more than Plant growth cycles ‘cut through’ causing r just aesthetic reasons that they need to be in particular need to be compaction and leading months correctly maintained. Whilst we may be very taken into consideration; to soil erosion or uneven good at making sure they are well looked these will influence when surfaces, you can then alleviate after through the spring and summer we watering, mulching, pruning and the compaction by cultivation during may neglect them come the winter months plant replacement takes place. Whilst we are the winter months and then replanting or grass when they are not used as much, if at all. now in a dormant growth period, remember seeding in the spring. E


Urban fox issues in London schools on the rise

Urban fox activity in London schools is on the increase. Problems occur when foxes start persistently fouling, getting over familiar, urinating, damaging property and harbouring underneath classrooms or even in roof voids above classrooms. The main risk of having fox activity around a school is the risk of disease transmission. Foxes can harbour many contagious diseases. Most foxes will carry external parasites such as fleas and ticks; but the most common disease which foxes are most likely to transmit to man is Toxocariasis (Roundworm). The appeal to young children to place objects in their mouths and immature hygiene behaviour puts them at particular risk for picking up roundworm eggs. Foxes attacking humans and pets

are rare but not unheard of. Rubbish and left-overs may be found throughout the school grounds in the morning. Being opportunistic; urban foxes will take smaller pets such as chickens, rabbits, guinea pigs and tortoises; all of which are regularly kept in schools. It is well noted that urban foxes are becoming much bolder and tamer. This is partly due to the foxes living in such close proximity to us and the abundance of food available to them. Feeding urban foxes is strongly discouraged. It must always be remembered that urban foxes are wild animals and extremely unpredictable. Since local Councils do not provide a fox control service; you will need to source a professional and licensed

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pest control contractor that is capable to take up such a job like ourselves. Due to animal welfare and disease management; it is not appropriate to ‘relocate’ nuisance foxes from one area to another. It is a misconception that if you move a fox from one area to another, it will simply settle down. Such action could well be an offence under The Animal Welfare Act 2006 & The Wildlife & Countryside Act 1981. In an urban environment, due to the fact that many foxes from different parentage live in such close proximity, territorial behaviour is rarely seen in towns and cities. Pest – Go Limited operates around the M25 and specialises in the humane control of urban foxes within educational premises. We provide a fully comprehensive urban fox management service to include urban fox control, dead fox removal & disinfection, fox proofing and exclusion, habitat management and removing ‘live’ foxes from buildings. An appointed no obligation site inspection is always carried out before any works commence. FURTHER INFORMATION For further information, visit

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 Preparing for ice and snow It’s that time of year when potentially there could be a lot of ice and snow. Last year saw a 52 per cent rise in slips, trips and falls during icy and snowy conditions. A close eye should be kept on the weather, checking for warnings on local weather channels concerning potential ice and snow. There are specialty BALI contractors that focus on preventative and reactive gritting and snow clearance services so that outdoor settings don’t pose a hazard when conditions take a turn for the worse. If you have good sized trees, now is the time to check for dead and diseased branches and have them safely removed by a reputable arborist. Edges are something we take for granted but we are very reliant on them for guiding us and helping us navigate, whether that be the edge of a path, a road, a grassed area or planted border. When these become overgrown or obscured this increases the chance of injury from slips, trips or falls and damage from

vehicles that can’t see where they should be travelling or parking. Make sure they are well maintained and clearly defined. Play areas Playground equipment and surfacing should be checked on a regular basis but, with these areas perhaps being a little less used at this time of year, it’s an ideal time to carry out a thorough visual check for signs of damage and wear and tear, along with a tactile test. Timber play equipment should be checked for cracks; anything exceeding 8mm should be reported. Moving parts should be checked and lubricated as necessary. Make sure the safety surface areas are clear of debris and trip hazards and check for signs of wear and tear and replace as needed. A professional inspection should take place at least once a year. If serious defects are detected the compromised equipment should be immobilised and repaired as soon as possible. All play equipment and surfaces should comply

with European Standards of Play Equipment (EN1176) and or Surfacing (EN1177). It’s also a great time to check sport surfacing. Continue to keep surfaces free of debris and keep off artificial grass in frosty conditions and when snow has settled as walking on the surface can damage the artificial fibres. It is also best to try not to remove snow once it has settled but allow it to thaw as removal can again damage the fibres. Avoid applying rock salt or grit as, once dissolved, this can cause contamination and damage to the surface. Specialist PDV salts and antifreezes can be applied by contractors to help prevent ice and snow settling; it is not, however, appropriate for all surfaces so specialist advice should be sort for your type of surface. One of the biggest problem’s artificial surfaces face at this time of the year is the potential to flood; with a build-up of contaminates water will be slow to drain, therefore regular brushing and the replacement of infill materials is essential to keep the areas draining adequately. If flooding and standing water persists then contractors may need to be contacted to carry out a deep cleaning process and restore the correct drainage properties. If ignored this will only continue to worsen as times goes on. A BALI registered company that specialises in grounds maintenance will create a bespoke maintenance plan and carry out the maintenance all year round for your green space. Search for members in your area on

Groundscare & Landscaping

Winter is a great time of year to check sport surfacing. Continue to keep surfaces free of debris and keep off artificial grass in frosty conditions and when snow has settled as walking on the surface can damage the artificial fibres.

Promoting the industry to pupils The landscape industry is facing a skills shortage and, to dispels the myths surrounding the industry and promote landscaping careers to school pupils and career changers, BALI has set up the GoLandscape careers outreach initiative. It’s a great time to join the landscape industry so why not invite an industry GoLandscape ambassador in your area to talk to your students about the exciting world of landscaping? Find out more at L FURTHER INFORMATION



Jacksons Fencing has been at the forefront of fencing manufacturing for over 70 years, providing schools and other businesses with safe, secure and sustainable security solutions

Background Jacksons Fencing was founded in 1947, initially in the supply of timber fencing to serve the farming community and public and from the mid 1980’s, steel demarcation and security fencing and gates for a diverse range of applications. Today, Jacksons is one of the leading and most experienced manufacturers and installers of perimeter security solutions to schools in the UK, completing projects for over 750 schools every year. As a family owned and financially stable ISO9001 certified business, Jacksons has remained faithful to the founding principles; to design, manufacture and install the best possible products, backed by the best possible service and to put customers first in everything they do. Jacksons employ a team of over 250 operating from their UK manufacturing and sales operations situated in Ashford (HQ), Bath and Chester. The R&D, design, manufacturing and contracting operations for security products is based in Ashford HQ. Jacksons adhere to quality and confidence in their people, products and processes offering class-leading guarantees across their product portfolio. This includes a 25 year Jakcure® guarantee on timber products against rot and insect attack, a 25 year Service Life guarantee on steel fencing and gates and a 25 month parts and labour guarantee on automated access products and electronic intruder deterrent and detection solutions.

Protecting the future At a time when schools face both capacity pressures and severe budgetary constraints, it can be all too easy to let perimeter replacement or upgrading programmes slip – even though safety is often the primary concern of parents. To gauge exactly how parents, teachers and those responsible for perimeter solutions view school security, we recently commissioned original research for a special report. Jacksons polled 1,000 parents (a nationally representative sample) and asked them about a range of issues around school security. These were joined by the views of more than 280 teachers (including nearly 50 heads) and 75 architects. The report, ‘Protecting the Future’ contains a number of alarming findings, such as 27 per cent of parents knowing of trespassers coming on to school property. It highlights uncomfortable failings in school security systems across the UK and uncovers a range of serious security challenges facing schools. It also provides key advice on how to strike a balance between aesthetics and perimeter security, which ensures the safety of everyone on site, with creating an inviting base of learning that avoids a fortress-like environment. Complete solutions provider Jacksons Fencing has been at the forefront of fencing manufacturing for over 70 years, providing schools and all other

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High-quality perimeter solutions for school security types of businesses with safe, secure and sustainable security solutions. For nurseries, primary schools and other areas where there are young children, Playtime® Timber is a RoSPA-approved timber solution which offers a safe enclosure and protection against vandalism, dog-fouling and unwanted intrusion. Jacksons also manufacture and supply a range of perimeter fencing solutions, designed to create clear and defined boundaries to secure a school, prevent unauthorised entry to grounds, deter theft and anti-social behaviour and protecting pupils, staff and visitors from accident and injury. These include vertical bar fencing such as our Barbican® range and welded mesh fencing such as Euroguard®. In addition to this, Jacksons manufacture a variety of sports fencing and gate solutions, helping to keep children safe and secure as well as keeping balls within the defined playing area. For schools where noise pollution is an issue, the Jakoustic® barrier systems are the perfect solution to reduce the impact of noise on classrooms. They have been specifically designed to deliver noise reduction, sustainability and security whilst presenting a pleasant aesthetic. Case study: Northwood School Jacksons Fencing was specified by Lizard Landscape Design to manufacture and install a range of perimeter security solutions at Northwood School in Hillingdon, London. Jacksons Barbican® Imperial, Euroguard®, Featherboard and Hit & Miss style fences and gates were supplied and installed at the school to cover both the external perimeter and inner compounds. The boundary of the school was secured with Jacksons Barbican Imperial® fences and gates with finials to provide both the aesthetic and level of protection desired. On a different part of the Northwood site a solution was needed to prevent unauthorised access to the bottom of a fire escape. The company’s Euroguard® Flatform gates were installed to provide a visible deterrent while incorporating a push pad for emergency egress. Within the campus, Jacksons’ Featherboard timber fencing was used to provide a clear boundary between the main school and service yard, protecting students, teachers and visitors from potential injury from delivery vehicles. Additionally, this provides another layer of protection to discourage potential criminals from trespassing. L FURTHER INFORMATION Web: Tel: 0800 408 1359



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IT & Computing

Long-term plans for assessing computer science After reflecting on the responses to its consultation on the matter, Ofqual has reached the decision to assess programming skills through exams from 2022. Education Business reports Ofqual has announced that grade. A practical assessment was GCSE computer science will be put in place in addition to the exam assessed by exam from 2022. to enable pupils to demonstrate their The exams watchdog consulted on the skills in a more ‘real-life’ context. long-term arrangements for assessing However, the exams’ watchdog had programming skills in GCSE computer gained evidence that tasks and solutions science towards the end of 2018 following were available on online forums and problems with malpractice during collaborative programming sites, which practical coursework assignments. is contrary to exam board rules. The concerns over malpractice, including Some sites were viewed thousands plagiarism, was deemed so serious a of times, making it difficult to problem that Ofqual said it would be know how many pupils had impossible for exam boards to ensure that gained an unfair advantage. grades awarded would fairly reflect ability. The decision was therefore made to put Pupils are supposed to in place interim arrangements while complete a practical Ofqual consulted on long-term computer science arrangements for assessing Exam project under programming skills. This means boards strictly controlled currently, students have to w ill be free conditions, which complete a programming t o adopt approac would make task during their course, he up 20 per cent but it does not count program s to assessing of the GCSE towards the final grade. ming

skills by examina tion tha t they feel are most appropr iate

Long-term assessment The consultation had 394 responses from teachers, students, teacher unions, schools/colleges and exam boards. After considering the feedback, the decision was been made to assess programming skills through exams from 2022. This will apply for students whose teaching will start in 2020. Ofqual said that exam boards will be free to adopt approaches to assessing programming skills by examination that they feel are most appropriate from 2022 onwards. This affords them the opportunity to consult with stakeholders and be innovative in their approach. Ofqual said: “Beyond the requirement that all subject content is assessed and that all assessments within GCSE computer science meet our definition of an exam, we will not place any additional requirements on the form those assessments must take beyond our General Conditions. E



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Evidence of malpractice lead Ofqual to consult on the arrangements for assessing GCSE computer science

Ofqual said that despite putting in place additional safeguards such as shortened assessment windows, monitoring visits, and statistical and online monitoring, exam boards could not address all instances of solutions being shared online. What’s more, some were hosted on websites outside of the UK, and potentially outside of the legal reach of the boards. It is therefore unlikely to be able to identify all instances of malpractice. Additionally, the safeguards intended to reduce the risk of malpractice were found by teachers to place unreasonable pressures on them: requiring them to intensively police the work of their students, stopping them from offering support to students where needed, and preventing them from discussing the NEA tasks with their colleagues. L

 “Subject to meeting our general requirements, exam boards will be free to design their exams as they see fit.” Schools and colleges will have to confirm to their exam board that their students have been given the opportunity to design, write, test and refine programs using a high-level programming language with a textual definition, either to a specification or to solve a problem. Ofqual will not impose any requirements on how or when schools and colleges provide such an opportunity. The current interim arrangements, where schools and colleges must set aside 20 timetabled hours for students to undertake a programming task, will remain in place for students sitting exams up to 2021. Sally Collier, chief regulator, said: “We can now give certainty to teachers, schools and colleges about how GCSE computer science will be assessed in the long-term. Our requirements will allow the programming skills to be effectively assessed and mean that all students will have the opportunity to carry out practical programming work as part of their course. “I am also pleased to be encouraging innovation and allowing exam boards to respond to schools and colleges in a way that works for them. We were encouraged by the level of support for our proposals.”


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What were the other options? In Ofqual’s consultation, three approaches for assessing programming skills were given as options. These were assessing programming skills through non-exam assessment (NEA); separately reporting an endorsed grade for programming skills alongside the 9 to 1 grade; and assessing programming skills by examination. The majority of consultation responses supported the view that programming skills should be assessed by examination. Support was particularly strong among teachers. Some who did not believe that assessment by examination offered the best approach to assessing programming skills per se nevertheless felt that this approach was likely to ensure the most valid outcomes in this qualification at this time. Ofqual said: “We have concluded that assessing programming skills under exam conditions will ensure that outcomes in this qualification can be trusted and that all students are assessed on a level playing field. “Previous experiences within this qualification, as we discussed in detail in the consultation, have demonstrated that there are particular opportunities for malpractice in NEA in GCSE computer science (in the form of access to worked solutions). Applying additional rules to this qualification did not sufficiently mitigate these threats to validity, and risked compromising the experience of students and placing an unreasonable burden on teachers.”

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IT & Computing

Protecting schools from online attacks With cyber attacks an increasing worry for schools, John Jackson, CEO at London Grid for Learning – a not-for-profit community of over 3,000 UK schools – discusses what senior leaders can do to ensure they stay cyber safe now and in the future In just 30 years the internet has transformed the world in more ways than anyone could ever have predicted. This includes within our schools in the way children learn, interact and discover information. The downside to this incredible tool comes when it is abused by individuals with malicious intentions. Grooming, cyberbullying and extremist recruitment are well documented examples of the darker ways individuals or groups have used the internet to their advantage. In more recent months, headlines have covered the rise of cyber attacks in the education and public sectors with the Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks on the NHS and more recently hoax bomb phishing emails demanding money from schools. In order to protect themselves from these threats, schools are finding it necessary to step-up their online protection. However,

Assign responsibility Attributing responsibility for cybersecurity to one lead member of staff is the first step to becoming cyber-savvy. This person can then be charged with evaluating the school’s current solutions, keeping systems up to date with the latest upgrades and determining if additional protection is required. Putting one colleague in the driving seat of this initiative is more likely to lead to you achieving your outcomes than sharing responsibility jointly across your senior leadership team who, aside from not being experts, are far too time-pressured to manage security to the standard required.

with increasingly tight budgets Challenge your provider and numerous demands An absolute essential is to on funding, knowing make sure your external In orde r to the right tools and IT supplier has the skills protect themse software to invest and capacity to support lv from cy in is no easy task, you effectively. Your ber thre es schools ats, particularly for schools cybersecurity lead should a without extensive be at the forefront of necessa re finding it ry to st knowledge of the challenging your current cybersecurity world. provider to make sure their on ep-up lin To help schools they’re providing you protect e protect themselves, with the most up-toion we at LGfL have date protection available. increased our offering Topics they should address with added software, training include what level of fire-walling and resources provided to our companies have in place and the schools at no additional cost. For those anti-virus and anti-malware software they still looking for advice, take a look at the provide. All internet providers should also following tips for an overview of some of have proactive monitoring in place so they’re the policies you can quickly put in place able to alert you to any attacks on the school to help your school remain cybersafe. rather than the other way around. Not only E Volume 24.1 | EDUCATION BUSINESS MAGAZINE


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Toshiba helps Farlington School save over £100,000 Farlington purchased 12 new Toshiba multifunction printers (MFPs) and these, together with innovative PaperCut software, are delivering savings in excess of £100,000

The goal of Farlington School in West Sussex, which accepts pupils between the ages of 4 and 18, is to ensure that its students leave the school as well-educated young people with strong interpersonal skills and a broad range of interests. To help meet this goal, the school gives careful attention to every aspect of its operations, including services such as document management, to ensure that they perform efficiently, reliably and cost effectively whilst supporting the schools data security policies. Document management needs With this in mind, Farlington recently enlisted the help of a Toshiba Authorised Business Partner to re-assess its document management needs and to provide a robust and cost-effective solution. As a result of the assessment, Farlington purchased 12 new Toshiba multifunction printers (MFPs) and these, together with innovative PaperCut software, are delivering savings in excess of £100,000. The first step when approached by Farlington was to visit the school and take the time to learn more about the real document management and printing needs of the pupils and the teachers. Reliability of equipment During the initial visit the account manager spoke to a wide cross-section of stakeholders to find out about their document usage. During this exercise it was clear that the school was having problems with its existing print infrastructure – mainly the poor reliability of the equipment and the difficulty of accessing support. In addition, the document management and workflow


software the school wasn’t user friendly. A report was submitted suggesting that the school should replace the 30 printers it was currently using with 12 MFPs and also switch to using PaperCut software. After carefully assessing our recommendations, the school decided to implement them. PaperCut MF software The PaperCut MF software that underpins the school’s new document management systems allows users to easily manage their print assets, collect usage data by location and device, identify inefficiencies and implement cost recovery and allocation strategies to maximise system productivity and return on investment. The integrated scanning feature in PaperCut makes scanning to individual or group email addresses, home folders and scanning straight to the cloud simple, and PaperCut mobility print lets the software do the heavy lifting so BYOD printing “just works” on any device. The school is also benefiting from working with the latest printing and document management technologies, as well as having easy access, should it ever be needed, to a helpful and responsive support team. Benefits “The staff are really appreciating the benefits of the new machines,” said Louise Higson, headmistress of Farlington, “and when we started to see the savings they were making for us we knew that we’d made a very good decision in purchasing them. Indeed, the financial savings we are making are in excess of £100,000 over the three year contract which is very attractive on its own, but we’re delighted to find that we’re also getting

ease of use, much more versatile document management facilities, and excellent support.” The printing needs of the school differ from one month to the next, depending on the school calendar. For instance, at the beginning of term there is a need to print a large volume of booklets for parents and staff. In the past, this task involved multiple steps and was both time-consuming and complex. Now, thanks to the MFPs from Toshiba and the PaperCut software, school employees can print directly from their PC, laptop or smart device and create the booklets on the go. Similarly, when printing is need for art classes in term time, the new systems allow pupils to realise their creativity without being hampered by hard-to-understand technology. Machines that consistently deliver outstanding performance are a key benefit for Toshiba customers, but the customer, like Farlington, is also committed to protecting the environment. With the help of expert’s co2balance, Toshiba has created a scheme to help compensate for CO2 emissions by offsetting its products. Carbon offsetting allows for investment in CSR projects that save the emission of or absorb an equivalent amount of CO2 to that associated with the Toshiba product. In this way, emissions are balanced to become ‘Carbon Zero’ which allows for positive business activities with no detriment to the environment. “Working with Farlington to deliver document management improvements has been an interesting and pleasurable experience, and we are delighted to confirm that their purchase of new printers will also help the planet and less fortunate communities,” explained Chris Mills, marketing manager at Toshiba. “As a direct result of the order from the school, Toshiba projects supporting people with social and health benefits will prevent 19.2 tonnes of CO2 by protecting woodland and providing clean water to communities in Africa.” At Farlington School, a progressive educational facility that recognises, encourages and supports students’ creativity, Toshiba MFPs and new document management software have truly made a difference. Cost and time-savings have now been added to user-friendliness and environmental benefits, making it even easier for the school’s pupils to ‘discover, believe and achieve’. L FURTHER INFORMATION


Patching policy With security vulnerabilities discovered daily you must have a patching policy in place as part of your school IT network management. Patch management involves ensuring that your network is constantly updated with the latest patches, updates and security fixes. Whilst somewhat tedious, if done effectively a patching policy will ensure attackers aren’t able to exploit security holes in your IT system. An effective policy to manage patches should cover the time period they must be installed (i.e. within 30 days), who is responsible for installing them and monitoring exceptions (such as devices which rely on precise software versions). Having these processes in place will help to make what can be an overwhelming task manageable. Unsolicited emails Reporting unsolicited emails is another must. As senior leaders this is something all staff must be encouraged to do. Your email provider should allow you to report email as spam and commercial organisations have an obligation to allow you to unsubscribe to marketing or promotional material. If you are receiving a large amount of unsolicited messaging, contact your provider and ensure that they stop this from happening. There are numerous examples of viruses which have spread through email and of hoaxes committed by individuals attempting to extort money from unwitting recipients so this is an obvious but important point to stay on top of.

In more recent months, headlines have covered the rise of cyber attacks in the education and public sectors with the Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks on the NHS and more recently hoax bomb phishing emails to schools. Pupil awareness As well as educating teachers, it’s crucial we don’t neglect to train our students about the importance of cybersecurity. One great way to start conversations with pupils is with the LGfL TRUSTnet ‘Cyber Security’ resource. The ‘Data to Go’ video from module one makes a striking point about how human behaviour constitutes the biggest weakness in any system and demonstrates to pupils how easy we sometimes make it for criminals to get hold of our personal information. As cyber attacks become more common and increasingly sophisticated, the UK government has stressed the importance of getting children interested in subjects such as Computer Science in order to train more professionals for the cybersecurity industry. With the National Crime Agency reporting a rise in the number of teenagers becoming involved in cyber crime, it’s essential that we not only equip young people to be capable users of technology but to undertand the consequences of their online activity – both for themselves and others.

IT & Computing

 should they be providing these precautions as part of your package, providers should also be delivering effective training and full-time support to ensure that you’re utilising the technology fully.

Collaboration Working together with other schools is an essential way of promoting best practice. At LGfL we have developed Cyber Protect, our groundbreaking initiative to create an online Centre of Excellence for cybersecurity for schools. The new centre, which will sit within LGfL’s existing site, will provide the best possible protection from increasingly complex and sophisticated cyber threats though collaboration, threat management and partnerships with schools, industry and government leaders. Finally, keep in mind that cybersecurity isn’t something you should be losing sleep over. There are numerous policies in place as well as software available to help protect you from differing levels of threat. The most important thing is to make sure that your IT provider is ready to work with you to mitigate the risks and that you have internal policies in place to help manage your IT security. L FURTHER INFORMATION

Invest in your staff You should also ensure you’re making the most of your number one asset – your staff! This means ensuring that all staff with any responsibility for cybersecurity have access to high-quality training and CPD. At LGfL we’re aware that technology can often fail to deliver the intended benefits at the speed envisaged, generally due to an absence of support for the necessary changes needed in leadership, skills and pedagogy. To help counter this we’ve teamed up with world leaders in education pedagogy Microsoft and Google to partner with us in delivering training and developing professional networks where teachers can effectively support each other. We’re also identifying champion schools to stand as leaders and examples of best practise for other schools who wish to improve. Of course external CPD needs to be underpinned by robust support in school so that the benefits of off-site training can continue to be felt on returning to the classroom. To support our new CPD initiatives we’ve created our ‘LGfL TV’ portal which we designed specifically to support senior leaders in the necessary change management processes needed to bring about change in schools.



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Making the lawful copying of material less burdensome How KYOCERA created the world’s first digitisation of the copyright monitoring process Birthplace of the industrial revolution. Home to some of the world’s best and longest established universities and research institutions. A favoured location for knowledge-driven organisations and businesses. As well as netting the highest publishing revenues as a percentage of GDP of any economy. Yet it’s somehow still easy to overlook what a generally great job the UK does of both creating and sharing knowledge. Operating in a pivotal role between copyright holders and content consumers, the Copyright Licensing Agency (CLA) has the difficult job of ensuring that those who hold copyrights are recognised and recompensed when third parties choose to share that content by copying and scanning.  Fair and equitable as that may sound, it’s by no means simple or straightforward to do. Let’s say you’re a university lecturer, copying some pages of a textbook to give to a class. Many universities now only allow copies to be made within the confines of the lending library, under the supervision of a librarian, to ensure compliance with what has been a ponderous licensing process. Usually a paper form needs to be filled out each time content is copied, and a hard copy of that content attached to the form. Across a large institution, that could mean hundreds of forms every day. Reams of paper get deposited in files for later analysis by the CLA.  Compliance for schools Now shift that process to your average state school. Very likely without any sophisticated library infrastructure and expertise, the burden of compliance moves to busy teachers. One of the top three complaints of

teachers in the state sector is the mountain of paperwork and administration they have to climb on route to the classroom every day. The lawful copying of material – an essential aid to teaching, you’d have to agree – becomes yet another burden to endure. Put yourself in their shoes: would you be focused on ticking every box and dotting every i on some irksome form? Let’s change focus once more, to the CLA’s field team. Theirs is the job of collecting the forms, manually analysing the data and matching it up to their own database. This can be particularly time consuming when the data is of poor quality – which it frequently is. The CLA, by the way, is a not-for-profit business, so this kind of inefficiency really hurts. Digitising a time consuming process The CLA knew it was possible to massively streamline their process, but didn’t have the expertise in house. “Our ultimate aim is to make copyright as simple as we possibly can for content users. So we went out to the industry and tried to find a partner with the experience to help,” explains Kevin Gohil, chief operating officer and group chief transformation officer at the CLA. In truth, there’s no real shortage of people and organisations with bragging rights on digital process transformation. But the CLA were looking for a collaborator that offered the best fit in terms of expertise, experience and ethos. That last point is maybe the trickiest to pin down. Here’s Rod Tonna-Barthet, Kyocera UK’s chief executive: “To me, this project felt like the perfect intersection between using innovation to

improve processes, and doing the right thing. Those are both core values at Kyocera, and have been since we were founded.” Improving workflows With an authentic, collaborative relationship established, we could bring our innovation, experience and platforms to bear. Repurposing paper into efficient digital workflows is at the heart of what we do, even if our multifunction printers are the most recognisable bit of our brand. We have an established technology platform – HyPAS™ – dedicated to powering digital workflows. To achieve the ultra-streamlined results that the CLA hoped for, we proposed to co‑develop a specific application with them. The first of its kind The result is a world’s first. The CopyScanPublications app harnesses artificial intelligence (AI) technology to revolutionise and streamline the process undertaken by all UK schools and colleges when they copy or scan copyrighted content. With one touch, a teacher can copy (or scan) while the HyPAS app captures all of the necessary information in the background and communicates it instantly to the CLA’s systems. Almost undetectable in use, it creates both massive time efficiencies and more accurate data. It’s simply installed on a printer (from a USB drive). And because we believe in doing the right thing, the app is free to use.  “The accuracy and granularity that this tool brings will help us to be fairer, and that’s really important to us,” commented Kevin. “It’s really a win-win-win scenario – which is rare in this industry!” What does the future hold? The world of publishing and the way people are consuming data is changing dramatically. New ways need to constantly be found to make access to – and licensing of – copyright material as fair and simple as possible. And that applies to all industries, not just education. With resources freed up at the CLA, we’re continuing the collaboration.  “We look forward to working closely with Kyocera’s experts on new challenges. This is the start of a much wider conversation,” adds Kevin. FURTHER INFORMATION




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Expert Panel: EdTech

Business Information for Education Decision Makers

Educational technology is hailed as being able to improve learning, enhance teaching and slash workload. But what should schools consider when selecting a new technology solution? We ask our expert panel for their advice

Leonard Sim, head of key accounts, Kyocera Document Solutions UK Leonard Sim is the head of key accounts for Kyocera Document Solutions UK, one of the world’s leading document output management companies. He has been promoting the use of technology to help the public sector in time and cost for seven years.

Ji Li, managing director, Plum Innovations Plum Innovations is a London based technical service provider for schools. Plum’s aim is to help reinforce the positive impact of EdTech products on pupils’ learning outcomes and assisting schools to employ technologies in the most effective way. Ji is the vice chair of EdTech group at BESA and a member of board at Naace. @lijiukcn

The Department for Education has recognised the power that technology has to inspire young minds and free-up teacher time to focus on teaching. In the summer last year, the Education Secretary Damian Hinds called on the technology industry to help tackle the issues facing schools and teachers – namely improving outcomes for pupils, enhancing teaching and slashing workload. But not all schools are able to benefit from the latest technology without adequate funding. When it comes to procuring EdTech, many find it daunting selecting the right product when there is so much on the market. And with tech changing at such a rapid rate, many are also scared that what they choose now, will not be suitable for the future. Damian Hinds picked up on these issues in his opening speech at the 2019 Bett show. He said: “If you are a teacher, a school, a school leader or a head, it can be very difficult to know from this vast range of what is on the market, what is good.

Alan O’Donohoe, specialist leader in education, Alan has more than 20 years experience teaching and leading technology, computing and ICT in schools in Northern England. He converted to teach computing in 2010, and first introduced computing into his school in Preston, then supported others to do the same through professional development

“There can be a very understandable nervousness on behalf of schools dealing sometimes with brands and names that they are not familiar with and wondering if they can be certain that these will be around in a number of years’ time. “Then there is the issue of making a commitment, once you have signed up for a particular piece of software or a particular programme, it can feel like you are locked in. That can both make people stick with things perhaps longer than they would have otherwise, but also make them more reluctant to take them on in the first place.” While innovations such as artificial intelligence and virtual reality can no doubt enhance learning, some schools even lack basic computer equipment. A recent parliamentary education committee heard some educational establishments are using ten-year old PCs. That said, there are many exemplar schools that are embracing technology to its full potential, and the DfE wants to make these ‘demonstrator schools’ where educators can get the peer-to-peer support and the training.

Andrew Cowling, Business development and channel marketing specialist, PFU EMEA PFU EMEA is responsible for the marketing and sales of Fujitsu Scanners. Andrew is a strong advocate of the drivers and opportunity that digital transformation can bring to organisations and the benefits thereof that technology driven processes can offer.

Buying technology Against this backdrop, we ask our expert panel for their views on how to get it right when choosing EdTech. Leonard Sim, head of key accounts for Kyocera Document Solutions UK, urges schools to meet the market and not be afraid to do so. He says: “I find that people are unwilling to meet with experts who can show them new market innovations, as they can view it as just another person trying to sell to them. Instead it should be viewed as a way to get the best knowledge. It becomes very apparent the difference of someone just trying to sell, and someone who can offer information, and therefore actually benefit the school. “Secondly, in an environment where expertise and time can both be in short supply, you can’t make a decision based mainly on price. I would suggest that a school runs any tender based on 60 per cent service, support and quality, and 40 per cent price.” Commenting on the variety of products on the market, Ji Li, managing director of Plum Innovations, comments: “With more than E Volume 24.1 | EDUCATION BUSINESS MAGAZINE


Expert Panel: EdTech


 1,200 EdTech companies operating in the UK, new products and upgrades are released almost on weekly basis. Schools are definitely benefiting from this fast innovation pace. It means more solutions are available on the market and products are getting better and better.” Ji continues: “There are normally three situations when a school decides to employ new technology. The first could be a workflow or efficiency problem identified by the management where they are looking for new tech solutions to address the issue. The second could be for a school that is performing well and searching for new technologies to enhance the teaching and learning experience. The third scenario could be a failing school that is looking for cuttingedge technology to turn things around. “Regardless which scenario it is, schools should be clear about their aims and expectations when choosing new EdTech solutions. A checklist would be handy too, taking into consideration compatibility, training, total ownership, cost-effectiveness, and staff acceptance.” Alan O’Donohoe, specialist leader in education for, urges schools to be realistic, take a holistic view, and make sure staff training is considered. He says: “It can be very tempting to fall into the trap of believing that spending the entirety of an allocated budget on a new resource will bring about the desired outcomes and impact without considering how the resources will be implemented, by whom, as well as other associated demands, such as ongoing maintenance costs. If the staff that are expected to use the resource have not had adequate training and do not have faith in

the educational potential of it, it’s unlikely that the full value will ever be realised.” Taking a similar view, Andrew Cowling, business development and channel marketing specialist at PFU – a Fujitsu company, believes that schools need to understand the key drivers and factors behind technological change when modernising and implementing new technology. He says: “There are many third parties who can do an audit and it would certainly be recommended to understand not just whether the infrastructure meets the needs of all parties but that it will improve teaching and learning, as well as support strategic goals against national standards. Key as well is the staff who will need to be involved in the process, trained and fully immersed so you have their backing when rolling out.” Leonard Sim highlights the need to consider the sustainability of the technology. He says: “EdTech is moving so fast that today’s innovation is tomorrow’s abacus. “From a technology point of view, I think the secret to implementing practices is to try and do more with less, and with a sustainable view. “These rules stand regardless of new technology. But if it isn’t providing less administration and burden on the staff or isn’t giving more to the staff and students in terms of credible content, and doesn’t look to be sustainable (around in five years time) – why get it?” Transforming learning and teaching Talking about the revolutionary properties of education technology, Ji Li said: “Steve Jobs

once described computers as a bicycle for our mind. We should therefore not be too far away from thinking EdTech is like a vehicle for educational improvement. “Teachers are the ‘drivers’ for EdTech advancement to facilitate innovative teaching practices. But they must also have appropriate skills and willingness to harness technology if EdTech is to be successful.” Alan O’Donohoe believes that technology can be used to compliment the learning process. He says: “Technology is able to offer learners and educators a convenient and efficient manner of supporting learning and progress. For example, if a teacher chooses a blended learning approach, technology allows students to interact with support materials in a way that some students may find more engaging and accessible than say a printed resource.” Highlighting how technology can be used to facilitate feedback, Andrew Cowling says: “It is clear through research that better feedback has a big effect on improving learning and achievement, and as such schools need to explore how the use of technology can increase feedback without putting undue workload on teachers. “In particular, developing an approach to capturing evidence of progress which can help the learning and outcome process, schools have to be aware of two requirements; the requirement to help the child learn and the requirement for the teacher and school to be able to demonstrate that feedback on progress is effective in The improving learning. t en m t r “If schools allocate a p e D as time and sufficient cation h

for Edu he power ed t recognis ology has to hn that tec oung minds inspire y p teacher -u and free e tim


technology to encourage feedback then the expectations of all parties to develop further innovative techniques and methods can only help the process.” Tech for SEND pupils In the last five years, the number of children and young people with a education, health and care (EHC) plan has increased by 35 per cent, up from 237,111 in 2013/14. While there are various reasons for the dramatic rise, such as better diagnosis and a greater population, the government is accused of not providing enough support for SEND students. As such, the Department for Education has announced £350 million to support children with complex needs and disabilities. Catering for those complex needs is one area where technology can really become innovative and make a significant difference. Highfurlong School in Blackpool, for example, is using technology in very innovative ways to support their students with special education needs and disabilities, to get the very most out of their education. Commenting on the innovations that can come out of technology for SEND pupils, Ji Li says: “From cognitive difficulties to mobility or physical difficulties, technology has always been one of the leading drivers for SEND innovation. Products with adaptive learning features can make inclusion support much easier for students with learning difficulties. Assistive technology also

provides many creative ways for teachers to present knowledge and information for children with physical difficulties like visual and hearing impairment. “Augmented reality and virtual reality have opened a whole new world to SEND children, from a virtual tour in the Mayan village to space exploration between planets, the excitement and experience created are so powerful for maximising children’s learning engagement.”

Ji adds: “I really hope the use of motion sensor technology in SEND could continue to advance to the next level. Imagine if Stephen Hawking’s wheelchair model became affordable for children in special schools?” Alan O’Donohoe agrees that technology for SEND pupils can be transformative. He says: “Pupils with SEND may report that they find it more enjoyable to engage with particular software platforms or devices leading to a more positive learning experience. There are a variety of tools that act as aids to communication as well as highly customisable accessibility options, such as voice recognition and audio descriptions. But there is a careful balance to achieve between over simplifying the experience and limiting accessibility by maintaining unnecessary obstacles and challenges.” Leonard Sim said: “Schools need to create the back office savings so they can re-invest in SEND technology. For example, I have been to countless schools who are spending large amounts of money on the storage and administration of SEND student data. There are lots of ways to reduce that spend and put it to better use.” Andrew Cowling said: “Capturing evidence of progress (such as through Fujitsu scanning solutions) for pupils with SEND as well as across the whole pupil spectrum can be instrumental in raising pupil’s achievements. Technology is a key enabler that enables the ability to radically extend the amount of evidence of progress and to extend the ways that it is used. A strong focus on progress can massively increase the self-esteem and confidence of pupils and this is important in raising achievement levels and accelerating progress. The more the involvement of pupils and parents in the learning process allows for the increased reflection and actions relating to engagement and attainment of pupils.”

Expert Panel: EdTech Expert Panel: EdTech

While innovations such as virtual reality can no doubt enhance learning, some schools even lack basic computer equipment. A recent parliamentary education committee heard some educational establishments are using ten-year old computers.

The future Budget issues, workload, inspection changes, and recruitment issues will continue to pose challenges for schools in 2019. But can technology help address any of them? E



4th July 2019

Grange Hotel • St Pauls • London

Ji Li Technology must fit within the whole school eco-system to be successful and effective. Tech solutions should match with elements like management vision, development strategy, staff and pupils’ digital capability, and so on. Digital self-review framework would be really helpful for schools to ensure both digital and physical environments are suitable for any technology solution they employed to be effective. Teachers’ appropriate skills and willingness to harness technology are fundamentals of a successful EdTech case.

Expert Panel: EdTech Expert Panel: EdTech

Final thoughts

Alan O’Donohoe It can be very tempting to fall into the trap of believing that spending the entirety of an allocated budget on a new resource will bring about the desired outcomes without considering how the resources will be implemented, by whom as well as other associated demands. If the staff that are expected to use the resource have not had adequate training and do not have faith in the educational potential of it, it’s unlikely that the full value will ever be realised.

 “I’d expect more and more schools will start to review their business processes and work flows in order to improve general efficiency and effectiveness,” says Ji. “With appropriate training and spot-on solutions, technology can definitely help schools to achieve cost-saving and reduce workload. “There will be challenges during the process of re-shaping workflows and procedures. However once worked out, schools will find huge amount of time and resources saved and be able to re-invest them into innovative teaching and learning.” Leonard Sim sees one way in helping ease admin on teachers is to reduce the burden of compliance. He says “The Copyright Licensing Agency (CLA) has partnered with KYOCERA to create a new, free to use app which collects information about the copying of textbooks and other copyright content. Schools have a duty to demonstrated they’re meeting the terms of their CLA licence, and the app automates the otherwise burdensome process.” Andrew Cowling believes that schools need to move away from paper systems to simplify their workload. He says: “One of the key opportunities and drivers for schools this year is the move away from paper systems to online systems. Schools need to address the climate of fear that

technology can sometimes breed and it is the job of school leaders to actively lead the change to digital processes. “There are a number of drivers promoting the need to digitise. These range from compliance, the need to access material from any location, spiralling costs associated with paper processes, and the demand from pupils, parents and teachers alike for enhanced collaboration, instant access, instant decisions and more of an involvement in the learning experience. “The issue of workload is also something that will be more prominent and technology will help with better access, reduce unnecessary dead-ends, greater sharing for more tailored resources, and greater security. Longer term aims need to be children using online support to enable learning anywhere.” Alan O’Donohoe recommends working together with other schools to help address challenges: “Through sharing experiences and networking with other schools, a lot of time and money can be saved when schools pool their knowledge and experience. There are many online networks and communities that schools can take advantage of to avoid re-inventing the wheel, thus ensuring that any expenditure on new technology is wisely considered and reflects the wisdoms of others.” L

Leonard Sim I find that people are unwilling to meet with experts who can show them new market innovations, as they can view it as just another person trying to sell to them. Instead it should be viewed as a way to get the best knowledge. It becomes very apparent the difference of someone just trying to sell, and someone who can offer information, and therefore actually benefit the school. Andrew Cowling Understanding the key drivers and factors behind technological change is important when deciding which direction to go when modernising and implementing new technology within a school. There are many third parties who can do an audit and it would certainly be recommended to understand whether the infrastructure meets the needs of all parties and that it will improve teaching and learning as well as supporting strategic goals against national standards.




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Getting females into STEM


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Professor Helen Rogers and Lewie Graham from NMiTE examine why there is a shortage of females studying STEM subjects and entering STEM-related careers, and explore what is being done to correct the situation

What’s putting females off? As it stands, only one in eight engineers are female, but often there

about creativity and a concern for the world is nothing actively preventing women around us. And yet, the problem remains. from pursuing STEM careers. While the practise of engineering today is In my experience, I have not encountered changing and modernising, the vocabulary any barrier regarding gender in STEM and association is still old fashioned. The fields, although this may not be the information simply isn’t there for young case for all women. However, there can women. Engineering is portrayed negatively, be social barriers that prevent young as a laborious, physical and dull discipline. girls from studying STEM subjects. The vocabulary used to describe it within Firstly, the issue of peers and stigma; education is often equally negative. It is seen many young girls (ResearchGate) make their as a ‘problem-solving’ subject, one of cogs academic and career choices, based on those and gears, and while those do still feature of their peers. There is a stigma surrounding in engineering, they are but a small part of women studying, the wrongly labelled, one of the broadest disciplines in the world. ‘masculine’ subjects, such as engineering and In an article written by Dr Ellen L. physics. Secondly, the very wording Walker, featured in Psychology and portrayal of STEM subjects Today, Dr Walker identifies is putting young women off. that all women have a With the maintained The natural propensity to example of engineering, shortfa care (beyond motherly the very definition of wom ll instinct), an innate of engineering has concern for the wellchanged drastically enginee en in r i n being of others. This in only the last 50 g a d to the n ds perhaps explains years. Engineering defic ational why medicine in E today is much more

Professor Helen Rogers and Lewie Graham, NMiTE

First and foremost, in both the professional and educational sense, there is a deficit of women within STEM. According to Wise Campaign UK, in 2017 only 16 per cent of computer science graduates and 14 per cent engineering graduates were female, staggeringly low statistics and, sadly, still declining. This also extends beyond education, where nationally women occupy only 23 per cent of core STEM jobs. The shortfall of women in engineering adds to the national deficiency of engineers, which requires 20,000 more engineering graduates annually, according to the Engineering UK Report. This will have a severe impact on the economy, national growth and development generally as 19 per cent of all employees in the UK work in some form of engineering. So, what can be done? Well, there’s no simple answer.

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There are many organisations out there who are trying to bridge the gap between women and men in STEM careers.

Helen Rogers is a professor at NMiTE

 education has recently become a majority female speciality, the modern course and definition promotes the idea that a medic is able to help people and make a difference. Making a difference There is urgent need for the portrayal of engineering to change. Engineering should be seen as a way for people to make a difference, a way in which the individual can improve society, another subject that nurtures and directs the creativity of an individual. The common opinion of engineering in higher education is that a student must have maths and physics A-levels, a logical mindset and is, more often than not, male. The reality is that everyone has the ability to become an engineer in some form. Curiosity is a human instinct, the desire to better our environment is a human instinct, the want to help others is a human instinct; and education needs to promote these traits among boys and girls alike. All this said, there are many organisations out there who are trying to bridge the gap between women and men in STEM careers. To name one, Women In STEM, an online campaign that not only looks to level the playing field in STEM careers, but also aims to dispel stereotypes surrounding those subjects. And the way in which they are

doing it? Positive information; publishing articles packed with the facts, inspiration and the modern side of STEM subjects. They paint the picture of an interesting, non-exclusive and beneficial career which completely reflects the reality. To name another, in our organisation – the engineering university in Hereford called NMiTE (New Model in Technology & Engineering) – steps are also being taken to bring STEM studies to an even ratio of men to women. For example, the intake for the Design Cohort (a group of young people tasked with aiding in the creation of NMiTE) has already resulted in an even ratio of men to women. This is largely due to the advertising of the opportunity; at no point was it exclusive to anyone, instead it was aimed at people, who underwent an application process in which their gender, age and background had no bearing on their eligibility. The key traits for future study at NMiTE have been narrowed down to just three words: Grit, curiosity and passion. The determination to learn and improve; an interest in the subject material itself; and a genuine passion about the work that will be done. The course will not require maths and physics at A-level and offers will be given after an interview and selection day;


Sponsored by

About NMiTE Britain has an estimated annual shortfall of at least 22,000 engineering graduates and closing this gap is essential if the country is to have the high-value skills needed for a successful modern economy. NMiTE is being created to help solve this problem with a radical new approach and a curriculum that combines the best innovations from leading universities around the world. Subject to validation, NMiTE will open its doors to an initial Pioneer Cohort of undergraduates in September 2019. By 2020, it’s expected that a minimum of 150 students will be based at a purposebuilt city centre campus in Hereford from where NMiTE will deliver the world’s most distinctive and innovative engineering curriculum. With a focus on learning by doing, it intends to be educating more than 5,000 engineering students by 2032. The future university is being strongly backed by engineering businesses, the Herefordshire community, Herefordshire Council, the University of Warwick, Olin College of Engineering (USA), professional engineering bodies and the UK Government, which recently announced up to £23million in initial funding and featured it in its recent White Paper Industrial Strategy: Building a Britain fit for the future. £8 million of this funding for the project was awarded to the Marches LEP via its Growth Deal with Government. Growth Deals are awarded to LEPs through a competitive bidding process to fund the delivery of projects to boost the local economy.

giving future students a real chance to show themselves, rather than just their grades. NMiTE will also offer a Master’s degree in integrated engineering, in only three years. With 46 weeks in an academic year, the course will be intensive and terms longer than those of current universities, however, students will not have to endure the stress of exams, as there will be on going, gradual assessment. A different way of learning? Yes. An inclusive and competitive one? Certainly. L

Helen Rogers is a professor at NMiTE (New Model in Technology and Engineering), and Lewie Graham is a Design Cohort participant. FURTHER INFORMATION



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A new report from the Association of Play Industries (API) has shown a strong link between screen time and children’s inactivity. While parents are urged to act, the report also suggests that schools have the opportunity to promote active play


Screen time impeding play time

The Association of Play Industries’ is calling upon the government to issue an official recommendation of two hours discretionary screen time per day for children. This comes following a new report, ‘Movement for Movement’, which reveals that children have never moved so little and points to evidence that screens are a key reason. There appears to be a rapid and dramatic change from outdoor to indoor time, with a 50 per cent increase in children’s discretionary screen time (DST) in less than a decade. By the age of eight, the average child will have spent one full year sitting in front of a screen. The decline of public playgrounds The API is also calling on the government to invest in outdoor play provision, especially in deprived areas, to reverse the decline in playgrounds. Using the Freedom of Information Act, the API has requested local authorities disclose current and planned playground closures and discovered a range of alarming facts. By 2020/21 there will have been a 44 per cent decrease in spend on play facilities from 2017/18. In 2016/17 local authorities closed 63 playgrounds and in 2017/18 a further 70 playgrounds have been closed. Since 2014 local authorities have closed a total of 347 playgrounds across England. What’s more, there will be a decrease in spend on playgrounds of over £13m each year on average across England. Local authorities estimate a decrease in their spending on playgrounds of £25m by 2021.

A child’s main activity ‘Movement for Movement’s author, Dr Aric Sigman said: “This report confirms what most parents already know, that discretionary screen time is their children’s main activity. Whether it’s watching TV, playing games on laptops and iPads or spending time on social media, recreational screen time is occupying hours of their day, and has replaced outdoor play. “Parents are looking for support and guidance on how to go back-to-basics to limit discretionary screen time and get their children outdoors and playing again. The introduction of a two-hour limit for daily recreational screen time will offer specific In advice to parents and additio with the support of n to form government, we can start to tackle the classes, al PE increasing screen should schools p time issue.” r o m ote inclass an By the time playgro d outdoor they finish primary un school many children activity d physical have the highest breaks. levels of body fat on record. Rates of child type 2 diabetes and mental illness are also the highest in our history. Children now sleep less and have the highest level of admissions to NHS hospitals for sleep disorders. At the E Volume 24.1 | EDUCATION BUSINESS MAGAZINE



reduced at schools across the country as local authorities build additional classroom space to cope with an increasing demand for school places. The report says this is a missed opportunity as research suggests that school playground interventions ‘can have a significant, positive long-term intervention effect on children’s physical activity.’

A survey of 82 councils in England found that play areas have been reduced at schools as local authorities build additional classroom space to meet pupil demand  same time British children are spending the highest ever amount of their discretionary time in front of screens. “These issues are often presented as separate lifestyle factors yet there is growing evidence that they are not unrelated,” says Dr Sigman. “Increasingly, interrelationships are being identified between physical activity, free play, sedentary behaviour, discretionary screen time, sleep, mental illness, body fat and type 2 diabetes. “There is an urgent need to reconceptualise these behaviours not as separate components but as inextricably linked. Parents and policy-makers must now work in tandem to ensure that all elements of children’s movement behaviours are considered together, rather than being seen as the responsibility of separate government departments.” “Parental monitoring and the establishing of discretionary screen time limits can shape long-term media consumption habits and may prove a major preventer of mental health problems including screen dependency disorders,” says Dr Sigman. “And as children move far more when they are outside than inside, and the majority live in urban areas, investment in attractive, good quality, free and local playground provision is vital so they have somewhere to play.”

In addition to formal PE classes, schools should promote in-class and outdoor playground physical activity breaks. However, a survey of 82 councils in England found that play areas have been

Working together API Chair Mark Hardy concludes: “We commissioned A Movement for Movement to draw together the alarming body of evidence showing the effects that less play and more screens are having on children. “In light of the shocking statistics in this report, there is a real urgency to drive change before the long-term and permanent effects on children’s health and wellbeing become irreversible. “This requires action from both the government and parents to counteract the effects of too much recreational screen time. Parents need to be supported in imposing limits on this and provided with easily accessible areas in which their children can play. “Play is such a huge part of a child’s development and playgrounds are a muchneeded resource that are sadly under threat. This urgently needs to be reversed to ensure the health of a generation.” L FURTHER INFORMATION

What can schools do? Given that children spend a vast proportion of their lives in school, the report says that schools have opportunities for changing a culture of more sedentary time to include more physical activity, especially unstructured outdoor activity.



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Dragons’ Den win means more outdoor play for kids Welsh carpenter Craig Hill has secured the backing of Peter Jones in the new series of Dragons’ Den for his affordable range of outdoor learning equipment aimed at cash strapped primary schools, nurseries and day care centres From mud kitchens and balance beams to sandpits and scales, Craig’s business ‘Landscapes For Learning’ offers a quality, affordable alternative to the pricey catalogue based equipment, or cheap palletbased items currently on the market. Craig commented: “Having been a teacher working in secondary, primary and special education needs settings over a 13 year period and in speaking to many of my teacher friends I know that, despite their wishes, primary schools, nurseries and day care centres across the country are unable to offer enough outdoor, messy, exploratory play opportunities to their children because they lack the budget _ and often they receive poor Ofsted inspection ratings as a result. “Merging this insight with my skills as a carpenter, I set about to readdress the balance working in consultation with schools to create a range of accessible outdoor equipment so that children can continue their education outdoors in a fun, safe and inspiring environment whilst also reaping the rewards of sensory play.” A change in direction The catalyst for Craig’s change in career from teacher to carpenter came after his daughter Eirian, aged 2 at the time, suffered a ‘drop attack’ and fell backwards in to an open fire. Craig was able to put out the flames but not before significant burns to her back and legs requiring months of intensive care and skin grafts. Craig struggled to deal with the emotional impact of this tragedy and

found himself sinking in to depression as he tried to juggle his work and home life with difficulty. Ultimately Craig made the decision to give up his teaching career and took on some decking jobs for friends during the summer that followed. He found he was good with his hands and enjoyed the work. Jobs flowed in through recommendations and referrals until he trained and qualified as a carpenter and began his journey creating ‘Landscapes for Learning’. Craig commented: “As the main bread winner for our family, taking the decision to quit teaching was incredibly stressful. But I was really struggling after my daughter’s accident and couldn’t continue as I was. I needed to find a way to support my family that also helped improve my mental health and I found working with my hands, creating something from nothing, to be extremely therapeutic. When I qualified as a carpenter it felt like a new beginning and soon everything started to fall in place once again.” In the Den, father of five Peter Jones immediately saw the business’s potential and agreed a deal to invest £50,000 for a 30 per cent stake in the business. Peter Jones said: “Getting children outside to continue their learning is vital and is rightly being emphasised in the curriculum. The benefits are unparalleled. Children are better engaged and inspired, concentrate for longer, develop their fine motor skills and enjoy the many physical and emotional rewards of sensory, exploratory outdoor play. I know my own children would have loved

Craig’s products when they were younger and I recognised that, as well as his passion and determination, immediately. I want to help Craig make this type of learning accessible for everyone because ultimately if our children benefit, so do we all.” Determined to succeed Craig added: “No one expected anything of me growing up which is probably why determination is so ingrained in me. I grew up in a single parent family on a Welsh council estate. My parents divorced when I was three and my father was in and out of prison until he died two years ago. I have dyslexia but started teaching aged 23 having completed an additional two years of high school to gain the qualifications needed to access the teaching course. I’ve worked since I was able, building up a window cleaning round and carrying out garden maintenance jobs at the age of 16 and then in bingo halls and bars throughout my degree to help fund my course. I’m lucky that my mother met and married my step father who has been the only positive male role model in my life growing up and is someone I greatly admire. “I hope that with Peter’s help I’ll avoid some of the pitfalls that many new businesses succumb to, standing on the shoulders of giants as it were. I’m ambitious and I want to succeed but I believe capitalism can have a heart too. ‘Landscapes for Learning’ will never be about simply flogging products. “Our range of equipment is constantly evolving in line with the needs of schools and each item must be purposeful, affordable and of high quality. We also want to continue our philanthropy. Customers have the option of adding £1 to their bill and once we have enough money for materials, we build a mud kitchen for free and gift it to a deserving recipient.” If you would like a free site visit at your school or setting, please call 02922 403777. FURTHER INFORMATION Website: Email: Telephone: 02922 403777





Transforming PE through funding

and numeracy. We know that for all the training a primary school teacher receives, they often get very little guidance on how to educate their pupils in and through movement, exercise and physical activity. “Children’s first formative experiences of PE at primary school has an impact which can last a lifetime. Get it right and we will transform the life chances of a generation. Get it wrong and too many The Primary PE and School Sport Premium is proving vital in children will continue to miss out on the benefits that physical activity brings to helping schools make a sustainable and long term improvement their health, happiness and wellbeing. to the quality, quantity and impact of PE and sport on children’s ”There is so much potential for what wellbeing, learning and achievement schools can achieve with this extra funding – it presents the best chance we have in a generation to really Training for teachers, more varied activities, emotional wellbeing. The YS transform PE and harness and new equipment to get classes moving are What’s more, schools T wants b its potential to improve helping to transform PE across primary schools need to close the etter suppor children’s wellbeing.” in England, believes the Youth Sport Trust (YST). gender and disability The average state Most primary schools in England gap which sees girls teacher t for primary s who c funded primary school have now received Primary PE and and children with urr receive now has 281 pupils School Sport Premium funding. disabilities much less an aver ently on its role according The Youth Sport Trust (YST) works with more likely to participate age of just s ix hours to the Department than 6,000 primary schools and has been in school sport. of training of Education’s latest supporting many to help ensure the funding Schools should in PE boost has the maximum long-term impact. also have an Active ‘Schools, pupils and It has set out five goals to improve School action plan, their characteristics children’s formative experiences of PE and ensuring 30 active report’ - this means the school sport for a generation. At the heart minutes per day for every average school could see of these bold ambitions is better support pupil through active travel, active more than £18,750 extra funding to for primary teachers who currently receive playgrounds and active classrooms. help make PE fit for the 21st century. an average of just six hours of initial teacher training in physical education. Transforming PE How is the Head teachers across the country have premium being spent? Better training told YST how the funding will be vital Birmingham school, Paget Primary, has Using the Primary PE and School in helping them make a sustainable launched a ‘Sports Crew’ to engage more Sport Premium, the YST believes it and long term improvement to the children in sport and physical activity and is possible to transform schools. quality, quantity and importantly encourage them to be role models for It believes every primary school teacher impact of PE and sport on children’s younger children in the school. It is also should be professionally developed to wellbeing, learning and achievement. boosting extracurricular opportunities help children become physically literate Ali Oliver, chief executive of the Youth for its children to get active and enjoy by the time they leave primary school. Sport Trust, said: “There is no doubt that school sport with clubs before school, The YST wants all coaches working in afterthis generation is facing a health crisis during lunchtimes and after school. school sport to have been professionally as childhood obesity levels soar and Before it received the funding, school trained in how to coach children as well as children experience the lowest levels of attendance was below national average how to coach sport, with the introduction physical, social and emotional wellbeing and there were key children who were of nationally recognised training and on record. More money is being allocated displaying challenging behaviours standards for coaching children. to primary schools to help cut childhood and were becoming disengaged from The YST believes every primary school obesity through the Primary PE and learning. Now, the school is using the vehicle of sport to change attitudes and should have two hours of PE on the Sport Premium but if we do not support behaviours of staff, parents and children. curriculum with a focus on sporting schools to spend the funding in the right Its lunchtime staff have received training activities as a vehicle for self-development. way, it will be a wasted opportunity. in co-ordinating effective play in each of This should maximise the potential “By 2020, we want to see every primary the three key stages with further training of PE and school sport to improve school teacher professionally developed for teaching staff also. As a result of staff children’s performance in the classroom to help teach physical literacy with the training, teachers and teaching assistants E as well as their physical, social and same skill and passion as language literacy


Sport  are much more confident in delivering higher quality PE lessons. The school also said it had introduced a whole school sports week as opposed to the traditional sports day. Victoria Nussey, head teacher, said: “Since the appointment of a pastoral manager at our school for enrichment and motivation, Paget has gone from strength to strength. The children have gained a wealth of skills and experiences through PE and sport and have started to experience what success feels like which is filtering back into the classroom.” Adleigh Green Junior School in Hornchurch, Essex, has 364 pupils. Head teacher, John Morris OBE, said swimming provision at the school is a key department that will benefit as a result of the PE and sport premium: “Additional funding means that we can continue with our school-based swimming programme and we will be able to upgrade resources both for swimming and games. More funding through the premium will mean that we can purchase additional equipment to improve our school based swimming programme.”

St Josephs Catholic Primary School in Christchurch said further funding will be crucial in addressing the need to educate teaching staff about the importance of developing the physical literacy skills of its children. Louise Buxton, head teacher, said: “In order to address the need to educate teaching staff on the importance of physical literacy, we utilised an element of our PE Premium funding to access a range of CPD workshops, including Youth Sport Trust’s Start to Move training. Following the workshop we have introduced many of the concepts learnt on the course into our KS1 curriculum, which has been received positively by both staff and children. We can confidently report that more children in KS1 are now accessing a more appropriate curriculum and, more importantly, enjoying the provision.” Foundations for the future At Glynne Primary School in Dudley, the school has said the funding is helping to lay strong foundations for the future so it can continue to put PE firmly on the curriculum. Acting head teacher, Tracey Powell, said:

Head teachers across the country have told YST how the funding will be vital in helping them make an improvement to PE & sport


“Having the funding really helps to raise the profile of sport as the impact of the funding must be evident. I feel our school offers children a wide range of opportunities within the curriculum and outside. We celebrate children’s sporting talents and those children who show particular flair are also further challenged. We have a real focus on children achieving their personal best and celebrate the success of all our children within sport by using sporting journals - an investment supported by the sports premium. “The way we have spent our funding has enabled us to build on the firm foundations we already had and further develop physical activity throughout school. We recognise there are always areas for improvement and the funding, along with providing evidence of impact, helps schools to ensure those improvements are a priority.” Primary schools can use the funding to join the Youth Sport Trust’s primary school membership for PE, school sport and physical activity. The charity’s wide range of pioneering member benefits will transform the power of PE in schools across the country. For more information and to sign up visit L FURTHER INFORMATION


SportsArt pioneer the move to sustainable fitness with the launch of it’s new range of fitness equipment

Reducing electricity consumption Imagine if the energy produced during a cardio workout could be harnessed to reduce fitness facilities overall electricity consumption? That concept is now a reality as SportsArt, the green fitness company, launches its innovative new ECO-POWR™ range of sustainable fitness equipment into the UK and Europe: This includes HYPERLINK the world’s first energy-producing treadmill: H9ps1Hf1E& ECO-POWR™ products ECO-POWR™ products harness up to 74 per cent of the kinetic energy produced during a workout, converting it into electricity that can be pumped back into the local grid, offsetting a significant portion of a gym’s energy consumption. A single workout on an ECO-POWR™ machine can produce up to 200 watts per hour of electricity and a full “green circuit” of equipment could generate 2,000 watts per hour - the equivalent of running a washing machine for six hours. Based on the recent usage data of the machines collected at the University of South Hampton, in one year, the 10 ECO-POWR Machines could power 10,000 laptop per one hour. This is good news for all education facilities looking to reduce their electricity bills. As reported by Adam Pigott, energy engineer from Kinect Energy Group: “There are a number of changes to government energy

legislations that are coming into effects that could impact on many operating in the education sector”. He continues: “You may think this is just more legislation being introduced to generate more work for businesses, but many of the upcoming initiatives also offer opportunities for decision makers and financial controllers in the sector to make significant savings, while also becoming more energy efficient in their gas, electricity and water use”. The first products of their kind to be launched in the UK, ECO-POWR™ equipment is already being used at Eco Gym in Brighton and is expected to start appearing at schools and health clubs around the country in 2019. Andy Little, Partner at Eco Gym, said, “We believe we all have a responsibility to look after the planet along with our minds and bodies. Along with SportsArt and the ECO-POWR™ range we are pioneering the move to sustainable fitness.” Equipment The new ECO-POWR™ range consists of six individual pieces of equipment:

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The fitness equipment that turns human effort into electricity “Verde” Treadmill; Elliptical; Upright Cycle; Recumbent Cycle; Indoor Cycle; “Verso” - Cross Trainer. All pieces in the range can be connected to create a “green circuit” within any existing facility, with wifi connectivity that allows the user to track their own workout and the energy they’ve generated through the free SA WELL+ app. Roger Eldergill, UK Country Manager at SportsArt, commented: “We’re excited to be bringing this genuinely innovative range of fitness equipment to the UK market. We believe that ECO-POWR can be transformative for users in making their workouts more sustainable and for fitness centers through helping to achieve their sustainability goals and reducing energy costs.” About SportsArt SportsArt has been an industry leader in innovative design and manufacturing excellence since 1977. The company consistently seeks to advance industry standards, positioning itself as one of the most creative manufacturers of premium quality fitness, medical, performance, and residential equipment. SportsArt is one of the largest single brand manufacturers in the world and is sold in over 80 countries worldwide. With over 500,000 square feet of state‑of‑the art manufacturing space; SportsArt designs, manufactures and tests all equipment to rigorous TÜV quality standards. With hundreds of patents worldwide for innovative technologies; such as the award winning ICARE™ system or the newly relaunched ECO‑POWR™ Series which comply with CE and UL certificates, SportsArt is the leading green fitness partner, developing products that are instrumental to rebuilding and sustaining lives. L FURTHER INFORMATION +44 (0)1509 274440



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1,000 years of Faith and History Special events at the Abbey in 2019 for KS1-2 British Values 26th - 28th February Explore the links between Church and State in Britain – the origins of our British Values. Science Week 12th -14th March Learn about scientists buried and remembered in the Abbey and their impact on science today.

Easter 26th - 28th March and 2nd - 4th April Discover the significance of the seasons of Lent and Easter.

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Kim Somerville from campaign group ‘Learning Away’ explains the benefits of taking part in school trips with an overnight stay for the adults involved Residentials are often the most relationships and engagement with memorable experience of students’ learning, often playing a “transformational school days; for the staff, they are role” in re-engaging some of the most extremely rewarding, if exhausting. disadvantaged pupils with their studies. Learning Away’s research has declared them It’s easy to see the benefits for your as “providing opportunities and benefits that students, but what is in it for you? You may cannot be achieved in any other educational be thinking that dealing with your students’ context or setting. The combination travel sickness, sleep walking or leaking of activities and shared experience of shower gel is not the career high you are living and learning with others makes a looking for, but residentials have been residential a unique learning opportunity.” proven to play a transformational role for They have been described by teachers the staff involved too. Here are five reasons as “worth half a term in school”. to say ‘yes’ to taking part in a residential. Learning Away’s compelling action research, spanning five years with 60 schools discovered Widen and develop that the impact of a residential is even your pedagogical skills greater when schools follow a set of guiding Residentials give you time to reflect on your principles which can transform residentials practice and your teaching, to become more into highly effective, ‘Brilliant Residentials’. experimental and flexible. In the Learning These principles include residentials being: Away programme, teachers were more willing led by teachers; co-designed with and confident to take risks and students; fully integrated into try new methods. Teachers the curriculum; and affordable were also more trusting A ssistants for all. If schools follow of their students and teacher , these principles, teachers linked this to the s school m and have acknowledged they improved relationships can improve pupils’ developed on widely a anagers resilience, achievement, residentials. gree

that resident ia ls p la ya signific their proant role in f developessional ment

A participant from a staff focus group said: “My teaching is much more kinaesthetic, more practical, more moving around, it’s trusting the kids a little bit more. Before the residential, I was probably a little bit afraid about doing that sort of thing, whereas now I know I can handle it, its fine and I’m getting much more positive results from it.” Grow your professional development opportunities Teaching assistants, teachers and school managers widely agree that residentials play a significant role in their professional development, in particular through the opportunities to take on additional responsibility. They also present the opportunity to develop planning and organisation, evaluation and volunteer management skills. A participant in a staff focus group said: “I was the kind of person who didn’t camp, that wasn’t my kind of thing. Having been involved over the years and seen how much the teachers and staff get from it, and what an amazing opportunity it is for our kids, I think it’s been just the most amazing experience.” E

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The high-trust relationships built between staff on residentials have long-lasting impacts at both professional and personal levels which can be taken back to school


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New guidance on school trip health and safety The Department for Education has published new guidance on the health and safety of educational visits. The guidance covers topics such as consent from parents, what to do when using outside organisations, and how to risk assess for adventurous activities, as well as trips abroad. Gill Harvey, the chief executive of School Travel Forum said: “The School Travel Forum welcomes the Department for Education’s recent recommendations around health and safety on school trips. The government’s new guidance document is in line with the work that the School Travel Forum, our members and all Learning Outside the Classroom (LOtC) Quality Badge awarding bodies, have been promoting for many years. “We are fully in support of all the advice it gives relating to consent, coordination, providers, and risk management, and will continue to lead the way in ensuring that health and safety is considered first and foremost in school travel situations. Further, the School Travel Forum would advise that all schools take these guidelines into consideration and, when in doubt, look for the LOtC Quality Badge.” See the guidance here:

 Boost your understanding of your students Residentials give you space to discover things about your students you cannot see in the classroom. During the Learning Away programme, the more trusting relationships developed between staff and students on residentials meant that students often shared more about themselves, which enabled staff to better understand their behaviours. Secondary staff noted that residentials provided a context where they could learn – from each other – how to manage more challenging behaviour, and that they also continued this learning (particularly within the residential staff group) back in school.

A secondary teacher at a staff focus group said: “Knowing students and having a history together gives you new ways to support students or challenge students in school. They can tell you anything when they’ve seen you in pyjamas!” Enhance your relationships with staff The high-trust relationships built between staff on residentials have long-lasting impacts at both professional and personal levels. Residentials give staff the opportunity to work with staff from other subject areas and/or year groups as well as spend extended time with each other both during planning sessions – both within and across schools – and on residentials themselves.

A participant at a staff group said: “When does an art teacher get to hang out with a maths teacher? You get to know all these different members of staff on a whole different level and build friendships. It makes you think ‘I quite like work because I quite like the people I work with,’ and that makes you happier, which makes you enjoy your job, which is fed through to the kids.” Boost cohesion and sense of belonging The sense of community and the memorability of experiences on residentials helps to boost your cohesion and a sense of belonging in your school both on the residential and afterwards. On the Learning Away programme, staff and students put this down to teamwork, stronger relationships and getting to know people with whom they did not normally work. L FURTHER INFORMATION



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Allocations The ‘additional capital funding 2018 to 2019 ready reckoner’, which can be found on the website, provides information on Last year saw Chancellor Phillip Hammond announce £400m to how the additional £400m will be calculated give schools a one-off payment to buy the “little extras they and a tool to allow you to estimate your likely allocation. need”. Education Business reports on what the funding can be The allocations will be for spent on and who is eligible individual schools, and in some cases the payments Schools will go through In the Autumn Budget 2018, the last year, we were able can spe local authorities, Chancellor Philip Hammond announced to spend some money dioceses or multia one-off capital grant to help schools in-year, one-off, money that the fun nd academy trusts. “buy the little extras they need.” will not be repeated in future projects ding on w The funding The fund has £400m allocated to it, and the years. It’s nothing to do with h ic include h may should be used government expects an average size primary mainstream schools funding. improv eme building for improvements school to receive £10,000 and an average It’s nothing to do with s, equip nts to rather than major size secondary school to receive £50,000. the broader questions m a e nd othe capital projects, and Hammond said: “I recognise that school around spending. r facilitie nt s, for schools to spend budgets often do not stretch to that extra bit “For example, if a school such as ICT the money in financial of kit that would make such a difference. needs to buy a couple of year 2018 to 2019. “So I am announcing a £400m inwhiteboards, or some laptop However, the normal terms year bonus to help our schools buy computers or something like that, of devolved formula capital the little extras they need.” having a cheque for £50,000, I would will apply which provide some flexibility The move met some criticism at the have thought, would be quite useful for most for schools to spend the funding over the time from schools and industry experts. schools, and certainly for schools I talk to.” following two financial years if necessary. Geoff Barton, general secretary of the Final allocations will be published this Association of School and College Leaders, said: What next? year at “While we welcome any increased investment The government has now released publications/capital-allocations in schools, the £400m ‘bonus’ announced today some guidance on who is eligible for hardly scratches the surface of what is needed.” the funding, what it should be spent Funding for sports and wellbeing “The chancellor’s comment that this money on, and how the payment will work. For spending that will go on children’s will help schools to ‘buy the little extras they The funding is for maintained nursery schools; wellbeing, such as sports equipment, breakfast need’ shows a complete misunderstanding primary and secondary schools; academies clubs and playgrounds, schools can of the prevailing funding pressures. and free schools; special schools; pupil referral apply for the Healthy Pupils “Many schools don’t have enough units; non-maintained special schools; sixth Capital Fund. E money to provide a full curriculum or form colleges; and special post-16 institutions individual support to pupils, let alone that have eligible state-funded pupils. provide ‘little extras’. What they desperately Schools can spend the funding on capital need is improved core funding. “ projects to meet their own priorities. This But speaking on the Today Programme, may include improvements to buildings, the chancellor explained this was a oneequipment and other facilities, such as ICT. off payment, and that the discussion of The funding cannot however, be spent on school funding would occur another time. many of the revenue costs that schools Hammond said: “Of course we will be are struggling to meet, such looking at schools funding again in the as teacher pay rises and spending review alongside police funding, support staff local government funding, defence funding, wages. social care and all the many other things that we have to take care of,” he said. “What I was doing with schools was something quite different. Because we have had such low borrowing


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Funding for that bit of extra kit

A hearing by the parliamentary education committee in November, heard from unions and teachers that the money would have been better spent as a revenue grant to fund the day-to-day running of schools.


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The ‘additional capital funding 2018 to 2019 ready reckoner’, which can be found on the website, provides information on how the additional £400m will be calculated and a tool to allow you to estimate your likely allocation.

 This funding is provided from the Soft Drinks Industry Levy, know as the ‘sugar tax’, for 2018-19 only. The funding can be used on things such as refurbishing or building of changing rooms, sports halls and gyms, swimming pools, kitchens, dining spaces, garden spaces and playgrounds. The PE and sport premium meanwhile has been doubled thanks to funding from the sugar tax. Schools must use the funding to make additional and sustainable improvements to the quality of physical education (PE), physical activity and sport on offer. This can include building capacity and capability within the school, providing a broader experience of a range of sports and activities, and even hire qualified sports coaches to work with teachers to enhance or extend current opportunities. Public health minister Steve Brine said: “The school environment is critical in shaping a healthy lifestyle, which is why we are using the money from the soft drinks industry levy to double the PE and sport premium. This is another positive outcome from our world leading Childhood Obesity Plan. “Healthy eating, physical activity and sport not only help tackle childhood obesity, but can also have a positive impact on pupils’ behaviour, attendance, concentration and attainment, helping children to reach their potential.” L FURTHER INFORMATION

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Special Educational Needs Written by Matt Taylor, business development director, Supply Desk

The challenges of recruiting for SEND roles

– provision which is becoming increasingly difficult for schools to provide in the midst of a recruitment and retention crisis. Within SEND, there are specialisations – and finding teachers who specialise in certain areas or have particular training can be a further challenge for schools recruiting for such roles.

Attracting more SEND teachers So what can schools do to attract more SEND teachers into these important positions which support some of the most vulnerable members of society? Firstly, more clearly defined routes into SEND Recruiting for mainstream teachers is a challenge, but what teaching are imperative – such routes exist about for special educational needs and disability (SEND) roles? in mainstream education but, unfortunately, are not as well defined in SEND teaching. Matt Taylor discusses some of the issues facing schools recruiting Unlike becoming a teacher in a mainstream in this area, as well as some tips for retaining great SEND teachers setting, there is currently no postgraduate special needs teacher training route to Schools across the UK are currently in with the most common types of needs prepare teachers for working in a SEND the midst of a recruitment and retention being learning difficulties (25 per school. Specific training programmes crisis, with low numbers of candidates and cent) and Autistic Spectrum should be set up to cater to those teacher trainees. Applications for teaching Disorders (almost 27 per who want to go into SEND Within training courses fell by one-third last year cent). Nearly a quarter teaching – the pathway SEND, t – plummeting from 19,330 in December of these children are into this area of teaching h ere are spe 2016 to just 12,820 in 2017, according to not in school (NEU needs to become simpler c ia lisation and fin the Universities and Colleges Admissions 2018) and this year, and more direct in order s ding te Service. Additionally, high numbers of teachers 8,000 SEND children to draw in and keep a c h w ers ho spec are leaving the profession – 81 per cent of across the UK did not more candidates; we certain ialise in teachers surveyed by the National Education have a school place. speak with countless areas ca Union (NEU, 2018) said they had considered To thrive in a learning candidates who are n be a fu leaving the profession in the last year. environment, these interested in becoming rther challen The teacher shortage across the UK is children require smaller SEND teachers but find the ge affecting both mainstream and SEND schools. class sizes and often current pathway convoluted. According to the Department for Education’s individualised lessons. Some For both mainstream 2017 statistics, 14 per cent of pupils – 1.2 may need additional one-on-one and SEND roles, the inability million – have special needs or disability support and teaching assistants (TAs) of schools to offer competitive



Special Educational Needs

starting salaries is a further challenge to recruitment in this area. For example, a Physics graduate with an interest in SEND education would receive a much higher graduate salary using her/his skill set in an alternative profession. A redress in starting salaries for teachers across the board – both in mainstream and SEND – would help to attract, and retain, a higher number of candidates. Dealing with emotional extremes At a structural and management level, there are many key processes and measures schools can implement to support and retain valuable SEND teachers. For example, schools could introduce a robust appraisal system; offer your staff professional development opportunities and external training; provide mentoring opportunities, and foster a school culture of openness and understanding. Further to this, in SEND, emotional extremes are heightened. SEND teachers are often working with pupils who have more challenging behaviour, which can often take an emotional toll. Access to the right support, such as providing a counsellor on-site for staff to offload to is a valuable addition to your school’s offering. Providing adequate TA support within the classroom is also extremely important in SEND schools: children who have profound and multiple learning difficulties (PMLD) will often have one-to-one support, and ensuring that SEND teachers are adequately supported with TAs is crucial in minimising workload pressure and retaining staff. What to look out for From a school’s perspective, here are some key competencies of great SEND teachers to look out for Firstly, there is creativity. The very best SEND teachers can adapt their lesson plans and style to suit their pupils as teaching children with SEND isn’t a ‘one size fits all’ strategy. To have the ability to adapt to the situations constantly thrown at you in a SEND environment is important. Another important trait is intuition. Some children will find it hard to express themselves and their emotions and so a SEND teacher might encounter issues with communication. They have to possess the skills to detect any background issues and be able to tackle them before they manifest into something bigger. Patience is another virtue in a SEND teacher. There will be bad days, sad days, testing days and trying days. There will be days when it feels like nothing goes to plan, and days when it seems as if everything has gone wrong. A good SEND teacher maintains composure and stays calm and patient in the face of challenges.

sizes are smaller and roles can be more challenging but at the same time the emotional reward can be greater. Lastly, there is a perception that SEND teachers just need to get students through the education system but truly great SEND teachers have high expectations of their students and will push them to become the absolute best they can be. Supply Desk (a division of Education Placement Group) offers specialist support staff to work on a 1:1 or small group basis with pupils who might be disadvantaged, displaying behavioural issues or struggling with their learning. Supply Desk’s Special Education Needs and Disability and support specialists will work with individuals or groups of pupils for an agreed period to improve outcomes. L FURTHER INFORMATION

Confidence is key SEND teachers must be sure of themselves, firm in their decision-making, and assured in their manner and delivery. Confidence in themselves, what they can deliver and the difference they can make to SEND students is vital. Organisational skills are also important – all pupils need structure to succeed, but it is especially important for SEND children. They often need clear instruction and explanation, and rules and boundaries. Another good trait to look out for is relationship building skills. As class sizes are smaller as a general rule, the importance of building positive and trusting relationships with students is somewhat heightened in SEND. Tips for recruiting SEND roles Have an open mind: don’t judge purely on a CV or skill-set – look for desire and enthusiasm. You can teach skills but you can’t teach passion. Be open and honest about the role you are recruiting for and the challenges your school/the role presents to the candidate. Think outside the box and look for transferrable skills: eg, a candidate may not have specific SEND experience but they might have a background in care. EYFS/KS1 primary teachers also transition well into SLD/PMLD roles. Conduct a lengthy interview process: let the candidate spend a whole day in the school, teach lessons and speak with staff – this ensures the candidate gets a complete picture of the school and whether or not its values align with their own.

A world where no child fails through lack of nurture and educational opportunity. Visit for more information about how nurture can benefit the children and young people in your setting.

What makes a great SEND teacher? So how do you know when you’ve found a great SEND teacher? What makes great teachers (whether mainstream or SEND) are teachers who strive to impact students’ lives in a positive way. In SEND, class



Fire Safety Written by BAFE Fire Safety Register

Studying up on your fire safety

assess the provider. They confirm the provider is working to the latest appropriate standards and best practice for the specific service they deliver. They check and verify the required competencies and management systems to ensure that the provider can categorically do what they say – and are checked annually. The Third Party Certification is earned through rigorous assessment that must be adhered to at all times to remain BAFE Fire Safety Register explains the importance of competence certificated. It is important to state here when it comes to meeting your fire safety obligations – both in that this certification does not cover all services, and the person responsible for terms of your ‘responsible person’ and the suppliers you use fire safety and sourcing providers must check their chosen providers certification covers the scope of work that is required. Fire safety provisions are paramount and What exactly is This responsibility for sourcing competent a legal obligation in many buildings but third party certification? persons is noted in national fire legislation, for educational facilities this is of huge Third party certification offers independent with England and Wales legislation stating: importance. These buildings contain verification and evidence that a company “The responsible person must, where numerous types of people of all ages, from or provider is competent, and working necessary nominate competent persons to students and staff to a multitude of visitors to the appropriate standards and best implement those measures and ensure that that do not know the buildings layout. practice for the services you require. the number of such persons, their training and In the fallout of the Grenfell Tower fire, ‘First party’ referral is simply a selfthe equipment available to them are adequate, this has highlighted several discussions endorsement, telling the potential customer taking into account the size of, and the specific including the subject of competence and (the person responsible for fire safety) that hazards involved in, the premises concerned” the use of competent providers for all they are competent, with no evidence of this. (The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) works, including fire safety. This need ‘Second party’ referral involves someone Order 2005 Part 2, Article 13. (3) (b) for quality assurance is covered in HM else, for instance another customer or a It also notes that “a person is to be regarded Government fire safety advice available membership body/trade association (without as competent for the purposes of paragraph online: “Third-party certification schemes third party certification criteria for joining) (3)(b) where he has sufficient for fire protection products and related who states that they are competent. training and experience or services are an effective means of providing UKAS Accredited Third Party knowledge and other the fullest possible assurances, offering Certification takes this to Third qualities to enable him a level of quality, reliability and safety another level completely. party properly to implement the that non-certificated products may lack. This is when an certifica measures referred to in “Third-party quality assurance can offer independent Certification tion offers in that paragraph.” UKAS comfort, both as a means of satisfying Body which is accredited depend Accredited Third Party you that goods and services you have by UKAS (the national verifica e n t tion an Certification will satisfy purchased are fit for purpose, and as a accreditation body that a c d evidence all the criteria required means of demonstrating that you have for the UK appointed om f it covers the scope complied with the law.” (Fire safety risk by government) sends or prov pany of the work needed. assessment: educational premises). trained assessors to ider is

compet ent



Fire Safety

In the fallout of the Grenfell Tower fire, this has highlighted several discussions including the subject of competence and the use of competent providers for all works, including fire safety. This need for quality assurance is covered in government fire safety advice It all begins with a fire risk assessment Whether it is a new or long-standing building, a quality fire risk assessment will highlight both everything you are doing correctly but also anything that may require attention to be compliant with UK fire safety legislation. Educational facilities may have multiple purposes for the same area, industrial kitchens, laboratories/workshops and other areas that should be addressed and reviewed regularly within your fire risk assessment. Third party certification is available for providers offering this service and having this will demonstrate they are competent to fulfil this work. The National Fire Chiefs Council (NFCC) also state you should follow steps “to help verify the competence and suitability of a prospective contractor” with one step being: “Be satisfied that the fire risk assessor who carries out the work is competent. This can be demonstrated by them providing evidence of compliance with the competency criteria set down by the Fire Risk Assessment Competency Council.” Another important step NFCC note is to “check that they have experience of working for your kind of business and premises.” A competent provider will be able to stress if they are capable to complete an assessment for your building, helping you as the appointed “responsible person” be confident in your choice of provider. Maintaining your fire safety provisions Maintenance of your fire safety provisions and systems is also listed in national fire safety legislation to ensure they remain “in efficient working order and in good repair”. Unlike security systems which are regularly switched off when the premises are opened and switched on again when leaving, fire detection and alarm systems are on all the time – and sometimes overlooked. By making sure that everything is in order there will be a much-reduced risk of false fire alarm activations and that they will work at the most critical times to protect life and property. This is a vital requirement for educational premises as the earlier you can detect the source of a fire the more time you will have to safely evacuate people in a calm and controlled manner. Emergency lighting can be overlooked also but is important to be maintained regularly to ensure a clear exit in the event of any emergency, not just fire. Regular ongoing maintenance also ensures that if the fire is small enough to be extinguished by someone on site, that the equipment provided will work as intended. Failure to source and regularly maintain quality fire extinguishers for example potentially runs the risk of a small controllable fire escalating into something far more dangerous, unnecessarily endangering lives and damage to the building itself. Provide a safe environment Ultimately, the complete responsibility of fire safety falls on your shoulders and with this, the legal obligations and consequences if this is not performed correctly. It is therefore in your best interest to source competent providers who are third party certificated to ensure this. There are multiple organisations that offer UKAS accredited third party certification, but a useful register is provided by BAFE that combines these into one place to search for competent contractors. It must be stressed that it is important your chosen provider is third party certificated for the specific service you require, and it is your responsibility to check this. In the instance that you require specific services that the BAFE schemes do not cover, it is still strongly advised to check if your chosen provider is third party certificated for these via another organisation. No one should have to be concerned with fire safety in an educational facility where people reside to teach and learn. Provide a safe environment, ready to act in the event of any fire or emergency. L

This information is provided by the BAFE Fire Safety Register, an independent register of quality fire safety service providers, third party certificated to ensure competence and service excellence to help meet your fire safety obligations. FURTHER INFORMATION


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Volume 24.1 | EDUCATION BUSINESS18/10/2018 MAGAZINE 12:09:41

THE SCHOOLS AND ACADEMIES SHOW LEARNING, COLLABORATING, INSPIRING The leading free to attend* two-day education policy and best practice event. Designed for school and college leads to support school business management. *Free to attend for public sector workers


Join us to hear from senior Government Speakers and association leaders from across the education sector. Support your personal growth with our CPD-certified seminar content and best practice workshops.



Join fellow School Leaders from across the UK and engage with leading suppliers.




Bespoke systems tailored to your school’s needs

Creating pathways to education & employment

Founded in 2004, IGS Solutions has a 15-year track record of developing systems for brands such as Primary PPA, NHS, Mitsubishi and Formula 1. IGS Solutions works in a collaborative, agile approach that is focused and aimed at delivering the highest quality product whilst allowing us to be responsive to changing requirements. With its dedicated team of experienced developers, IGS Solutions is an excellent choice for all your bespoke system and process development needs. With its extensive knowledge of software development, IGS Solutions is an expert at providing the best quality solutions. The company works on a custom basis where no software it produces is the same, which means your software is unique and beneficial to your business. Whether you are looking for

Nisai’s curriculum is quality assured and available to learners aged 11-25 with courses accredited by OCR, Cambridge and NOCN. Approved by the UK’s Department for Education as a Section 41 provider of online education, Nisai can be named in Section I of an Education Health & Care Plan for Post 16 learners. Nisai is also a Cambridge International School, providing iGCSE and A Levels to students across the globe. ​All schools within the Nisai Group are either ISI or OFSTED inspected. Nisai is the only online education provider to have been OFSTED inspected, recently receiving ‘Good’ with outstanding features. For over 17 years, Nisai has offered effective and innovative ways of giving people access to online education. Many students aren’t able to benefit

a web application requirement or a mobile application, IGS Solutions has experts that can help to make the difference. Systems it has developed include online lesson plans & e-learning, CRM systems, system integration, chatbots and job management systems to name just a few. IGS Solutions does not just stop there, it can provide ongoing support. Why not take a look at some of the case studies on its website or give the company a call to find out more.



from mainstream facilities for a range of reasons including health, personal circumstances or geographic location. Through the Nisai Virtual Academy, learners receive bespoke education delivered in an inclusive, social and studentfocused environment. The classes are interactive, taught by qualified teachers and are flexible in length and level of attainment. Nisai works with students of all backgrounds and help them achieve Functional Skills, GCSEs and A Levels which create pathways to further education and employment.



Making the most of your outdoor spaces

Keep your business healthy with SPA Training

RSJ Play is a Midlands based company specialising in the design and installation of playgrounds for schools and nurseries. It can provide a range of products to suit your needs, such as outdoor furniture, play equipment, shelters and outdoor sports and fitness equipment. RSJ Play know how critical physical development is for children of all ages and abilities. All its products are designed and chosen to be challenging and stimulating. RSJ Play’s aim is to create safe, adventurous playgrounds that have great play value and are cost effective. The most popular products are parents waiting shelters and gazebos which also double up as outdoor classrooms which are a great way to increase classroom space and provide an open environment. RSJ Play’s polycarbonate roof canopies provide good value

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

shelter from the elements as well as UV protection and are available in a range of designs. RSJ Play can also supply outdoor gym equipment to help you get the best out of your Sport and PE Premium budget along with multi use goal ends and agility trails. RSJ Play’s experienced team is there to help you transform your area into a much more effective, creative and active space.


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



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Contact Stocksigns for your school signage needs

Luxury educational trips to London’s attractions

Fire exit, fire extinguishers, first aid and chemical hazard warning signs are a few of the many signs used in schools. Other than health and safety signs required by legislation, there is so much more to school signage. In and around your school there will also be classroom signs, notice boards and perhaps decorative wall vinyl to inspire your students and staff. Stocksigns can create signage to visually enhance the learning environment but more importantly help pupils, staff and visitors navigate their way safely around the premises. With a vast range of both temporary and permanent displays, Stocksigns can help you promote events, create an eyecatching school entrance sign, and kit out the whole building with health and safety signs. Whatever you are looking for, from wayfinding to health and safety signs, banners and displays

VIP Trips For Kids is a oneof-a-kind children’s luxury travel company. Its highly experienced activity leaders take children on luxury educational trips to London’s world-famous attractions with VIP access, chauffeur driven and have lunch in a high-end child-friendly restaurant. This exclusive travel company is the only service out there offering such luxury child care and its trips have all proven to be a huge success. Unicef director Catherine Cottrell praised the service highly: “My boys loved meeting new children, it definitely was confidence building, they both loved it!” VIP Trips For Kids was set up for two main reasons. First of all, we know that children who explore life outside of their homes are able to develop their confidence and the skills to make new friends and explore new

or a completely new identity for your school, college or playgroup, Stocksign’s dedicated team of signage experts can help. The company has worked with many educational settings and prides itself on offering value for money, excellent service and fast delivery. Stocksign’s best-selling health and safety signs are available to buy online and its entire stock range is available in its catalogue, but if you need something special, call the company’s friendly team on 01737 774072.


places a lot easier. We wanted to give children the chance to do just this. The second reason behind creating VIP Trips For Kids was that we wanted to offer parents a solution to their childcare woes. By sending their children on a VIP Trips For Kids day out, they can fully relax knowing that their children are in the very best hands.

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Business Information for Education Decision Makers

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