Education Business 25.1

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ISSUE 25.1

Business Information for Education Decision Makers BETT REVIEW





The developments since the new computing curriculum came into play









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ISSUE 25.1

Business Information for Education Decision Makers BETT REVIEW





The developments since the new computing curriculum came into play

Talking tech at Bett With Bett taking place in January, the start of the year focuses our attention on educational technology and the impact it can have in the classroom. Science Minister Chris Skidmore spoke at this year’s event, reiterating the government’s commitment to education technology and working with industry to create solutions that address some of the challenges in education.


The Minister also announced that the DfE is funding trials of new assistive technology for pupils with special educational needs and disabilities, including ‘text-to-speech’ and ‘speech recognition’ software, which can help pupils with dyslexia improve their reading and proof-reading. It’s good to see that after the political upheaval we have seen in the last few months, government is still committed to investing in educational technology. Read the full Bett review on page 52.

Follow and interact with us on Twitter: @EducationBizz

We were delighted to talk to Dr Bill Mitchell, director of policy at BCS, who has been awarded an OBE in the New Year’s Honours for services to Computing and Artificial Intelligence in Education. Bill talks about the changes to the computing curriculum, what progress has been made, and the launch of the National Centre for Computing Education, on page 49.

Angela Pisanu, editor

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Contents Education Business 25.1 17

07 News

Revised Curriculum for Wales guidance published with £15m pledged for support; One in 20 teachers report mental health problems; London schools to extend air quality audit programme; Views sought on changes to inspection framework for teacher training

13 The Education System

What should be the new political administration’s policy priorities for schools? Leora Cruddas, chief executive of the Confederation of School Trusts suggests four priorities

17 Wellbeing

It is estimated that three children in an average size classroom will have a mental health problem. To curb this trend, the government is giving more funding and support to improve pupil wellbeing, such as embedding mental health on the curriculum and putting counsellors in schools

21 37

49 IT & Computing

Dr Bill Mitchell, director of policy at BCS, has been awarded an OBE in the New Year’s Honours for services to Computing and Artificial Intelligence in Education. Bill talks about the changes to the computing curriculum, what progress has been made, and the launch of the National Centre for Computing Education

52 Bett 2020 Review

Science Minister Chris Skidmore spoke at the BETT Show, reiterating the government’s commitment to education technology and working with industry to create solutions that address some of the challenges in education

55 Data Destruction

The Soil Association’s Food for Life programme works proactively to reconnect children with where food comes from, making healthy, tasty and sustainable meals the norm for all to enjoy

From exam papers, reports and classroom photos to financial details, national insurance numbers and safeguarding assessments, schools hold a vast amount of student data. So how do they successfully protect such information? Don Robins, BSIA Information Destruction Section Chairman, shares some advice

25 Sport

57 Finance

29 Design & Build

59 Procurement

The Department for Education has published an improved schools financial benchmarking service to allow schools to view their financial data, see how it compares with others, and use the information to establish relationships with other schools

With the Department for Education announcing that the new School Building Programme will focus on modern methods of construction – the shift towards innovative, factory-based building methods has been verified, writes Jackie Maginnis, chief executive of the Modular and Portable Building Association

Charity CPL Group shares its ethos of giving back to education and highlights future funding and support opportunities available

33 Design & Build

62 Play

By the academic year 2021/22, more than 385,000 additional pupils will be entering England’s primary and secondary school system, creating a need for extra classrooms. Mark Robinson explains how modern methods of construction can tackle the challenge


One of the greatest challenges for any education establishment is balancing the need to create an open and stimulating environment that encourages learning, whilst ensuring that the people and equipment are protected from security threats

21 Healthy Eating

How positively children and young people feel about sport and physical activity generally declines with age, with activity levels peaking when children are aged 5-7, and again at the end of primary school, finds a report by Sport England


43 Security

37 Design & Build

When it comes to tomorrow’s school buildings, the concept of ‘passive design’ could help lower bills and fight the climate crisis while keeping staff and students happy and comfortable

39 Air Quality

With mounting evidence linking poor air quality – both indoors and outdoors – to poor respiratory problems in children, we look at what schools can do to tackle the problem

Education Business magazine

61 Trips

School trips, especially ones that allow pupils to connect with nature, can have a positive impact on a child’s wellbeing, as well as boost relationships with classmates and teachers Outdoor play facilities that schools provide are an increasingly important tool in tackling children’s inactivity, says Mark Hardy, chair of the Association of Play Industries

65 Groundscare

What should schools be doing to ensure that their green spaces, outdoor play areas and sports pitches are in the best condition for the late-spring and early-summer months?


Traditionally, STEM subjects have been regarded by some students as slightly more abstracted from day to day life when compared to humanities-based subjects. However, with the growing coverage surrounding climate change, younger generations are rapidly becoming aware of the relevance STEM subjects hold in everyday life, writes Jane Dowden from the British Science Association Issue 25.1 | EDUCATION BUSINESS MAGAZINE


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Revised Curriculum for Wales guidance published with £15m pledged for support Welsh Education Minister Kirsty Williams has published the revised Curriculum for Wales guidance and confirmed an additional £15m to support teachers as they prepare for its implementation. The new guidance has been revised following extensive feedback from the draft curriculum published in April 2019 - it is simpler, shorter and gives every school in Wales the opportunity to design their own curriculum within a national approach that ensures consistency. The Minister also confirmed an additional £15m would be made available next year to support the curriculum’s

implementation, with £12m going directly to schools for professional learning. As part of the National Approach to Professional Learning there will be an additional INSET day for the next three years, a total of 18 over three years, with resources developed for schools to use. The Minister also confirmed plans to publish the curriculum’s implementation plan after Easter. The plan will provide a clear outline for implementation based on where schools should be focusing their efforts at different points up to 2022 and how they will be supported in doing this.

The Minister said: “I am delighted to publish the revised guidance today for our new, completely reformed, made in Wales, school curriculum. “This is a huge landmark for Welsh education - I am proud that we are leading the way on education reform and focusing on the knowledge and skills our young people need to become rounded citizens of Wales and the world.” READ MORE



New maths GCSE for post16 resit students proposed

Scottish Government research to focus on estranged students

A new report has investigated the feasibility of a new maths GCSE curriculum for post-16 resit students. The report from Mathematics in Education and Industry (MEI), with funding from the Nuffield Foundation, outlines a curriculum for a new qualification that focuses on the maths needed for everyday life and work, which also has sufficient rigour to meet the requirements of a GCSE qualification. It recommends that such a post-16 maths GCSE qualification should be developed and that it should have the same status as GCSE Mathematics at the same grade. It should also include a paper that can be taken early as a stepping-stone. The proposed new post16 maths GCSE would be available at Foundation tier only (grades 1-5). This is appropriate for the majority of resit students as over 90 per cent of resit GCSE Mathematics entries are for the Foundation tier. Those resit students likely to benefit from taking the Higher tier (grades 4-9) are well served by resitting the standard GCSE Mathematics. The development of this new curriculum is the start of a process to improve the

learning experience for GCSE Mathematics resit students and outcomes for the wider population by improving knowledge of, and attitudes towards, maths. It would require the Government to act upon the report’s recommendations and amend the requirements for resit GCSEs to allow this new post-16 maths GCSE. The DfE could then work with Ofqual to develop detailed content and regulatory requirements for the proposed new post16 maths GCSE, opening the way for awarding bodies to develop the qualification. Professor Sir Adrian Smith said: “There has long been concern that the policy of requiring substantial and increasing numbers of students post-16 to resit GCSE Mathematics does not best meet the needs of the majority of these students. This MEI report provides a well thought out blueprint for a new curriculum that could provide a more appropriate alternative for many students. It merits serious consideration by everyone involved in post16 mathematics education.” READ MORE

The Scottish Government is undertaking an independent research project to better understand the needs of students who are estranged from their parents or guardians. The move will inform any future potential changes to support for estranged students. A special arrangement to support estranged students is currently in place to ensure they are not subject to meanstesting. Any such students in higher education have access to a minimum income of £7,750 through a combination of bursaries and loans, and those in further education can access a maximum bursary of £4,500. Higher Education Minister Richard Lochhead met Stand Alone, the leading charity focused on the subject, which has been campaigning to give estranged students the same rights as other students in Scotland. Mr Lochhead said: “We had a very constructive meeting

today with Stand Alone. We are fully supportive of its efforts at tackling the various issues around this vulnerable group of mainly young people. “Our officials are now planning a study into the numbers of estranged students in Scotland and the support they need. In what we believe is a first for Scotland, this will aim to better understand the issue, the challenges estranged students face, and how many people might benefit from improved support. It is a critical next step as we consider how best to support estranged students in future.” The study announced will be commissioned externally of the Scottish Government and is expected to be a combination of desk-based research, literature reviews, focus groups and surveys. READ MORE



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One in 20 teachers report mental health problems One in 20 teachers in England are reporting a long-lasting mental health problem, according to a paper by UCL. The paper examines the mental health and well-being of teachers in England over time, with researchers analysing data from over 20,000 teachers and education professionals collected between 1992 and 2018 from three large population based surveys. Around five per cent of teachers in England now say that they suffer from a long-lasting mental health problem which has lasted (or is likely to last) for more than 12 months. There has also

been an increase in the percentage of education professionals who have been prescribed antidepressant medication, from around one per cent in the early 2000s to around five per cent today. However, this increase in reported mental health problems is not specific to education, and can also be observed for other professionals. For instance, nurses, accountants and human resource (HR) workers are also now much more likely to report suffering from a long-lasting mental health problem than in the 1990s. John Jerrim, lead author of the report, said: “The teaching profession in England

is currently in the midst of a crisis and one potential reason why its struggling to recruit and retain enough teachers is due to the pressures of the job. It has long been known that teaching is a stressful and challenging career and we wanted to see if the mental health and wellbeing of teachers had improved or declined, especially in light of government promises to ease the burden upon the teaching profession. READ MORE



Half of teachers feel unable to deal with student eco-anxiety

London schools to extend air quality audit programme

Half of teachers feel ill-equipped to deal with student anxiety around climate change, according to new research from environmental charity Global Action Plan. Climate-anxiety is proving to be a key challenge in today’s in school environment, adding to the stress levels of teenagers and teachers who feel illequipped to help their students. 40 per cent of the teachers surveyed feel that their senior leadership team is not engaging in climate change as an issue. Teachers can find themselves trapped in a cycle of inaction, as they have a lack of knowledge on how to respond and limited resources (or training) to help them discuss the issue with their students. With so many teachers feeling ill-prepared to deal with eco-anxiety this can lead to paralysis and a feeling that the subject is just too tough to tackle. This lack of action by schools compounds the problem and creates a cycle of anxiety among young people, who feel this critical issue is not seen as important by their schools.

91 per cent of the students surveyed would like to see their school doing more to engage with them about the issues around climate change. Global Action Plan, working with a specialist psychologist, have designed an Introductory Guide called Turning anxiety into action, which will be hosted on the Transform Our World site. The Guide is for teachers to help them manage student eco-anxiety and to facilitate conversations about climate action engagement with school leaders. The Transform Our World online teacher hub has been launched with support from the #iwill Fund to help achieve the #iwill campaign’s goal of making youth social action the norm for as many young people as possible. It empowers young people to tackle the root causes of the climate breakdown and biodiversity loss through social action. READ MORE

Five of London’s most polluted boroughs - Newham, Islington, Southwark, Westminster and Brent - will be extending the Mayor of London’s air quality audit programme to help cut pollution in their schools. Under the Mayor’s scheme, detailed air quality audits were carried out in 50 schools across 23 London boroughs. The audits assessed the air quality in some of the capital’s worst polluted schools and made a series of recommendations to protect pupils. As part of the programme the Mayor issued a £1 million fund which provided each of the 50 audited schools with a £10,000 starter grant and enabled any of the other London schools located in areas exceeding legal air pollution limits to apply for green infrastructure funding. Newham council is extending air quality audits to all primary and secondary schools in the borough as part of a long term air quality monitoring study. The monitoring will help target clean air initiatives which currently includes a ‘Healthy School Streets’ programme and ‘anti-idling’ campaigns. Islington Council has committed to all primary state run schools to be audited by April 2022 and Southwark Council intends

to start air pollution audits in schools later this year. Westminster has committed to ensure every education establishment (with the age ranges of 5 to 18 years old) are provided an Air Quality Audit. They have also allocated £1m of funding over four years to help primary schools after they have completed an air quality audit and received the report. Local authority schools, free schools and academies can apply for up to £10,000 each, and private schools can apply for up to £5,000. The money can be spent on building and highway improvements outside school and green infrastructure. Brent Council has developed the ‘Breathe clean’ project, which has helped to raise awareness of poor air quality at most infant and primary schools in the borough, including an air quality presentation and NO2 diffusion tubes. A report will be published soon to find out where the air quality hotspots are so the council can take targeted audits and interventions at those schools. READ MORE





Views sought on changes to inspection framework for teacher training Ofsted has published a consultation on a new approach to inspecting initial teacher education (ITE). The draft framework has been developed to align with Ofsted’s new education inspection framework (EIF) and the Department for Education’s standards and frameworks for ITT and early career teachers. Ofsted is seeking views whether to introduce a new ‘quality of education and training’ judgement, with a focus on the ITE curriculum, to replace two current judgements. Views are also sought on applying a new methodology for gathering inspection evidence, and a possibility

of a single visit, four-day inspection, announced three days in advance. It also wants to know if short and long telephone conversations should be part of inspection preparation, and whether inspections should only be done in spring and summer terms. The consultation is open for 10 weeks and will close on 3 April. Ofsted is seeking the views of a wide range of respondents, and would like to hear from trainee and newly qualified teachers, ITE partnerships, headteachers and other employers. Subject to the consultation, the new ITE framework will be published in summer

2020, introduced from September 2020, with inspections beginning in January 2021.




Funding to help schools open sports facilities after hours

Whole school’ approach to mental health in Wales

The DfE has announced funding of £2.4 million for better sports activities, with £1.6 million allocated to help school use their sports facilities outside the school day. The Active Partnership Network, supported by Sport England, will set up partnerships between schools and local sport providers, encouraging them to open up their sport facilities for fun and engaging sporting competitions, after school clubs and holiday activities. Education Secretary Gavin Williamson said: “Getting children active from a young age helps them build confidence and learn skills they will use in later life. Many schools already open up their facilities so their communities can benefit and I want to encourage even more to do so. “By backing schools with this extra money we can make more fun activities available

all year round - everything from football to dodgeball – to help children find a sport that they will enjoy and which will keep them healthy.” As part of plans to extend their facilities to sports and activity clubs outside of teaching hours, schools will be able to generate additional sustainable income from leasing their premises to external organisations at affordable rates. In partnership with sports charities Active Partnerships and Sport England, the fund will provide sporting opportunities across the country including in North Yorkshire and County Durham, Buckinghamshire and Milton Keynes, Greater Manchester, London and Gloucestershire.

The Welsh Government has doubled the funding available to local authorities and local health boards across Wales to protect, improve and support the mental health of children and young people. Worth approximately £2.5 million, the financing will be used to support projects relating to the Welsh Government’s whole school approach to mental health, announced by Education Minister Kirsty Williams and Health and Social Services Minister Vaughan Gething. The whole school approach aims to ensure that mental health and well-being become central to the way schools work leading to more effective ways of prevention and early intervention. To aid this, ministers confirmed that local authorities and local

health boards would receive £1.5 million and £264,000 respectively to support projects across Wales. The funding arrives roughly a year since the Welsh Government formed a Joint Ministerial Task and Finish Group to accelerate work on improving mental health and well-being support in schools. It was set up following recommendations from the Mind over Matter report released by the National Assembly for Wales’ Children, Young People and Education Committee in 2018. The Welsh Government has also published its mental health strategy ‘Together for Mental Health’. READ MORE




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The Education System Written by Leora Cruddas, chief executive, Confederation of School Trusts

What are the policy priorities for schools?

And ‘academisation’ is not the panacea. The academy trust is simply the legal vehicle which creates the conditions for schools to work together. We need to make the evidenceinformed case for the educational and financial sustainability of groups of schools.

Two: Fund schools fairly and sustainably The existing school funding system allocates money inconsistently across English schools. While a National Funding Formula (NFF) has been promised, there is still no clear date for primary legislation What should the government focus on for the next five years in that would implement the NFF. According to the 2019 annual report education? Leora Cruddas, chief executive of the Confederation on education spending in England, the of School Trusts, suggests four policy priorities Institute of Fiscal Studies (IFS) found that the government’s allocation of an extra £4.3 It is almost ten years since the 2010 services. There is now stronger evidence billion to the schools budget in England for Academies Act which enabled ‘convertor that groups of schools working together 2022–23 represents 7.4 per cent expected academies’ and saw the rise of groups in a single governance structure are real-terms growth in spending per pupil of schools in multi-academy trusts, educationally and financially stronger. between 2019–20 and 2022–23. This is which CST calls school trusts to reflect This is not an ideological argument for enough to almost completely their core education purpose. More full academisation, but an evidencereverse the cuts of eight than half of children and young people informed argument for the power per cent seen since The are now educated in School Trusts. of a group of schools working 2009–10. If delivered, academ It has taken a ten-year horizon for this in deep and purposeful this will leave school y trust is change to happen. So what should collaboration through what spending per pupil the leg simply the government focus on for the next David Hargreaves called in England about five years, this term of parliament? structural integration. the same level which c al vehicle reates t It is imperative now in 2022–23 as it he conditio One: Complete the reform that we create system was in 2009–10. schools ns for journey and create one system coherence. We should now The IFS concludes to A two-tier system is expensive, confusing work together to complete that no real-terms togethework and lacks the coherence needed to the reform journey. CST does growth in spending r drive improvement. It potentially leaves not believe in ‘compulsory per pupil over 13 years some smaller schools vulnerable as local academisation.’ We do not need represents a large squeeze authorities retract their school improvement more compliance in the system. by historical standards.” E Issue 25.1 | EDUCATION BUSINESS MAGAZINE


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 The combination of inconsistent distribution and funding pressures are creating a problem across the system and lack of strategic investment has stalled reforms. We now need the government to commit to legislation to implement the NFF and to deliver a sustainable funding settlement for schools. Three: review the approaches to improvement and accountability Ofsted has recently published a new evaluation report, Fight or flight? How ‘stuck’ schools are overcoming isolation. Ofsted defines a stuck school as a school or its predecessor that has had consistently weak inspection outcomes throughout the last 13 years. It defines unstuck schools as those that have previously had four full inspections that were graded less than good but has since had two good inspections. The report finds that government-funded support programmes have not had an effect in stuck schools and they are not perceived to have been transformative in unstuck schools either. The report exposes some of fatal flaws of successive government’s approach to improvement. This includes too much school improvement advice from too many different quarters of the school system. It also finds poor matching between the problems of the school and the advice on offer. There has also been insufficient attention to the context of the school, and too little time to fully diagnose the issues within the school. Trying to implement too many strategies at once is another flaw. Ofsted’s report considers carefully the impact of effective School Trusts. The unstuck schools in the research which were part of a School Trust (only half the sample) considered belonging to a Trust as crucial to their recent success. The emergent features of this improvement model appear to be advice and support that are built into an improvement strategy and delivered internally, and those delivering the support have the required knowledge and experience.

They have a small number of core improvement goals - most commonly, support which is focused on revising and implementing a consistent behaviour policy and upholding high standards of teaching. The support is bespoke to the school and time is spent with teachers and leaders. The Trust’s role in raising expectations, knowledge sharing and developing curriculum subject expertise – with the caveat that the capacity and management of the Trust appears to be critical. The Trust has strong systems of accountability and oversight – the research found that the only schools that thought they were effectively held to account were unstuck schools in Trusts. The plethora of government-funded improvement initiatives should be reviewed in light of this emerging evidence. The formerly dominant paradigm of improvement from a range of initiatives outside of schools needs to be stood down. Policy needs to follow the evidence of the impact of effective trusts in improving schools. Improvement is best achieved by being part of an organisation set up purely for the purpose of running and improving schools. Over the next five years, we need to work towards all schools being part of a strong and sustainable group. And we need school trusts that embrace the best evidence we have on how to improve schools at scale. Four: Focus on the regional imbalance in relation to the impact of school reforms The positive impact of the school reforms has not been felt in all regions of the country. Some parts of the country have been left behind. We now need to focus on those parts of the country where standards are still not good enough and there are too many stuck schools.

The Education System

The positive impact of the school reforms has not been felt in all regions of the country. Some parts of the country have been left behind. We now need to focus on those parts of the country where standards are still not good enough

The regional school commissioners (RSCs) should therefore focus on supporting strong trusts to grow and innovate in areas of long-standing need. They should encourage strong trusts to grow by converting and improving weaker maintained schools or adding vulnerable academies to their trust and improving them. They should also accelerate the development of mid-sized trusts with the potential to be strong; and create new strong trusts either by single academy trusts joining larger trusts or by supporting the growth of existing trusts via mergers or priority projects identified by RSCs. In the next five years the pattern of schooling in England and the growth of trusts cannot be organic. It must be by design. L

Leora Cruddas is chief executive of the Confederation of School Trusts. The views in this article are explored in greater depth in CST’s white paper, The Future Shape of the Education System in England which is available for download at policy-and-research/cst-policy-positions/ FURTHER INFORMATION

What did the conservatives pledge for education? In the Conservative manifesto, there was a pledge to increase school funding by £14 billion, with a promise that “those areas historically underfunded will receive the greatest increase”. It said that each secondary school pupil will receive a minimum of £5,000 next year, and each primary school pupil will receive £4,000 by 2021-22. The party also pledged a funding boost of £400 million for 16-19-year olds education, including further education and sixth form colleges. It also said that every school – including schools rated as outstanding – will receive regular checks, so that parents can be confident their child’s school continues to deliver the best education. To tackle disruptive behaviour, the Conservative Government pledged to invest £10 million in national Behaviour Hubs to enable schools which already have an excellent behaviour culture to work closely with other schools to drive improvement. It also said that salaries for new teachers will be increased to £30,000 by 2022-23 and that the Teachers’ Pension Scheme will be increased.






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• Not counselling; not early detection; not reactive… Prevent mental problems with widespread conversational skills about emotions that turn disappointments and setbacks into personal growth. • Much more than mere calming… Emotional Logic lifelong learning empowers staff, pupils and parents to harness emotion constructively into action during times of change, and come out stronger together. • Reduce mental illness by improved communication about hidden losses. Retain staff; reduce stress-related sickness absence. Improve pupil concentration and behaviour – primary and secondary. Turn parent conflict into cooperation. Cost-effective whole school community training first equips staff for mutual adaptability. Set aside £2,400 per thousand pupils per year for two years in April’s budget. Self-sustaining solutions after that. Visit our stand in the charities section of the London Schools and Academies Show For bespoke plans, or widespread introductory training, contact: | 01752 892455 | YouTube channel, and Facebook: Emotional Logic Centre

It is estimated that three children in an average-size classroom will have a mental health problem. To tackle this, the Welsh Government is taking a whole-school approach to wellbeing, while in Scotland, counselling services will be available to all secondary school pupils from September By the age of 14, half of all mental health problems will have begun, according to the World Health Organization. And Young Minds has estimated that three children in every average size classroom will have a mental health issue. To tackle this, the Welsh Government has committed to improving the wellbeing of children and young people. They want to equip children with the skills, confidence and tools to be emotionally resilient. The Welsh Government is taking a whole-school approach to wellbeing. This means that mental health and wellbeing is central to the way schools in Wales work, leading to more effective ways of prevention and early intervention. To support this work, the Welsh Government has doubled funding, providing an additional £2.5 million for local authorities and local health boards. A year ago, the Welsh Government formed a Joint Ministerial Task and Finish Group to accelerate work on improving mental

health and well-being support in schools. It was set up following recommendations from the Mind over Matter report released by the National Assembly for Wales’ Children, Young People and Education Committee in 2018. Education Minister Kirsty Williams said: “The mental health and wellbeing of our children and young people is so important and I’m pleased to announce further support for our whole school approach. Our National Mission places wellbeing at the core of our new curriculum, supporting our children and young people to become healthy confident individuals, who are building their mental and emotional well-being by developing confidence, resilience and empathy.” The Welsh Government has also published its mental health strategy ‘Together for Mental Health’. Scotland’s wellbeing work In Scotland, counselling services will be available to all secondary school pupils by September this year, including during the school holidays to ensure continuity of care.


A whole-school approach to pupil wellbeing

The Scottish Government and COSLA have agreed on the allocation of £60 million over four years, which will build or expand high quality counselling services for children and young people. Counselling services currently delivered by qualified and registered counsellors through Pupil Equity or Scottish Attainment funding will continue, enabling local authorities to reallocate those funds to other priorities to help close the attainment gap. Scottish Mental Health Minister Clare Haughey said: “Children and young people can face many issues growing up and must have the right support available at the right time. “Providing every secondary school with access to at least one counsellor by next year is a significant step forward in our package of measures to improve the mental health support available for children and young people.” Announced on 4 September 2018, The Scottish Government is investing over £60 million in additional school counselling services across all of Scotland. £12 million will go to local authorities for 2019/20, rising to £16 million a year thereafter. The funding is being distributed based on a fixed sum of £45,000 allocated to each Local Authority (LA), seven per cent for schools located in remote rural areas, and the remainder distributed on secondary pupil numbers. London’s focus on wellbeing The Mayor of London’s Healthy Schools initiative supports and recognises schools that go above and beyond to promote positive wellbeing in pupils. Schools can have a direct impact on helping children to lead a healthy lifestyle. They can help children learn about their health and develop their motivation and self-respect to make healthy choices. The Mayor’s award programme recognises and celebrates schools that are making a difference to their pupils’ wellbeing. One such school is George Spicer Primary School in Enfield, London, which has gained Healthy Schools London Silver and Bronze Awards. This is in recognition of their work creating a calm space for pupils to eat, encouraging healthy eating choices and expanding their range of food. London’s Deputy Mayor for Education and Childcare, Joanne McCartney met staff and children from each year group and observed a range of activities to support their Healthy Schools London programme. She took part in a healthy eating lesson with year 3 pupils and attended a road safety lesson with a year 4 group. She also met year 6 Healthy Schools ambassadors and accompanied the reception children at lunch. The Healthy Schools London programme gives Bronze, Silver and Gold awards to schools that encourage young Londoners to learn about their health and develop their motivation to make healthy choices. The Mayor is also supporting the Daily Mile – a campaign that encourages all schools to get their pupils moving every day to improve their overall fitness and wellbeing. L Issue 25.1 | EDUCATION BUSINESS MAGAZINE


Sponsor Feature

One small step for Dolce, one giant leap for High School Catering Houston, we have news of one of the UK’s most innovative caterers landing yet another great advance in the High School catering sector

Dolce are widely known in the education catering sector for building new concepts behind closed doors that propel the industry forward. In early 2001 the family run education catering specialists brought online pre-ordering to primary schools and cashless payments, which has since become a given in schools and arguably the most significant blue sky thinking in the education catering sector. This innovation helped land several awards including a Catey and an Educatering Award. So when we heard that their finest boffins were launching a new catering concept in high schools we were keen to catch up with them and discover what exciting new innovations they were bringing to the education sector. Building a Contemporary Brand The importance of building a popular brand in high school catering has certainly developed over the years and walking into one of Dolce’s ‘Street Kitchen’ sites is an incredible feeling. There is no printed ply board here and with


its rustic, bespoke, hand made presence it transports the customers to a restaurant like experience. Marketing Director and co family owner Adam Curtis explained that they had spent a long time planning and executing the brand and fit out to avoid the corporate feel that is prevalent in the sector. “In our experience teenage high school students want to be treated like college or university students in their early 20’s. To this extent we developed a bespoke, hand made branding concept that stands up in high streets, further education establishments and even cultural quarters in popular cities” added Adam. The presence of which is extensive from wood clad and majestically lit food courts to vintage French Citroen HY food vans and food festival festoon lighting. The Food Revolution Winning over hearts and minds of teenage customers with healthy food can be a difficult task and requires passion and imagination. As

a family company who set out cooking from scratch from raw ingredients before school food standards existed, the expectation is high for the new Street Kitchen offer. And it delivers. Offering the best in world street food alongside both traditional and contemporary freshly cooked favorites Dolce have actually managed to increase uptake of school meals by between 30 – 55% across its sites. Food Services manager Daryl Williams explained that they had drawn inspiration from around the world and researched the best of contemporary dishes across many food festivals and events to bring something genuinely enticing to a combined student and adult customer base. He explained “our offer comprises a fast flowing food court offering live cooking specials on large paella pans and woks, varied and wellthought out traditional meals and an extensive grab and go menu”. He went on to say, “we understand that students don’t just want many food options to choose from, they also want to be entertained, so we offer unique


Sponsor Feature

serveries from outdoor grab and go vintage food trucks to sports bars with ‘build a box’ health foods to traditional carvery dining rooms. There is something for everyone.” The fast and fresh cooking approach in the Street Kitchen sites has also revived an interest from adults and staff which has in turn notably changed the feel of a school diner to more of a contemporary mixed age food court. It seems that people of all ages are queuing up to try Street Kitchen! Sixth Form Delhi Ordering It is widely known that well fed kids are more successful in school and college, however, how on earth do you keep sixth form students on site rather than them going down the high street? It seems Dolce have cracked this problem with their refreshingly leftfield concept – Delhi Ordering. What is that you ask? Well, at the Willink School near Reading, you will be surprised to hear that students can see a school dinner lady adorned in a flowing gold cape and bikers helmet riding a food delivery rickshaw around the school to the sixth form area! Students there are able to place online orders before 10.30am from their bespoke sixth form menu (via the app on their phone) and Dolce deliver in style at lunch time. The transformation to the sixth form lounge by Dolce, coupled with the enticing and contemporary food offer has really turned heads at the school. The deputy Head explained that there had been a strong buy in from the sixth form students where previously there was none. Self Checkout We have all heard of self checkout tills at supermarkets and even some high school grab and go areas, but what we were greeted with at the Willink Schools main food court was a sophisticated, highly fast and efficient till system that has drastically cut queueing time there. Utilising RFID chip technology in keyring fobs (or anything else that takes your

fancy!) customers there can simply flash their contactless fob to bring up their account, enter their choices on the touchscreen and a member of the catering team will confirm the sale. This enacts both debting top up accounts as well as lodging bills on Direct Debit accounts with spend limits. The flow is exhilaratingly quick with each member of the serving staff able to operate four tills, quadrupling the amount of tills in operation. What’s more, each till booth is hand made by Dolce’s carpenters, bringing attention to detail, class and sophistication to the point of sale which can so often be an afterthought. It is this sophisticated and culturally inspired styling in the food courts that help students feel they are dining in a high street restaurant rather than a classic school dining hall. It really is no surprise then that the uptake of school meals has increased so significantly here.

Saving the world one Souvlaki at a time… It is also reassuring to know that each wrapper and box at the school is compostable and recycled pushing the green agenda and setting front facing standards to the most important customers. Students and staff are offered a sit in or takeaway option with wooden trays and trendy metal dishes available as well as branded food festival style cartons and boxes. Meat and vegetables are fresh, locally sourced and ethically produced, from Free Range to Fairtrade to MSC. With today’s teens being increasingly passionate about helping to save the environment, it seems these standards are as important to the young customers as they are to the family behind the company and well positioned bins dotted around the outside areas keep the school and its facilities looking respected and clean. So what’s next? Dolce’s Managing Director, Scott Curtis, has recently let slip that the firm already has a new concept being designed for Universities and Colleges, with interest as far as Sweden. However it is not expected that this will be rolled out until 2022. Scott explained “Due to the bespoke nature and high level of craftsmanship required, we are currently only rolling out our Street Kitchen concept across a maximum of 12 high schools per annum. Interest has been high and we are keen to partner with the right high schools who are passionate about pushing the boundaries on what can and should be offered to their students.” L FURTHER INFORMATION For more information on Dolce, Street Kitchen or to see if your school is eligible please contact or visit


















Healthy Eating Written by Food for Life

Connecting children with food

hour. In fact, FFL primary schools are more than twice as likely to achieve an Ofsted rating of ‘outstanding’across 10 criteria for inspection compared to the period before programme enrolment.

Get Together One of the most rewarding ways of embodying the Food for Life spirit is through organising a Get Together event. The Soil Association’s Food for Life programme works proactively Food for Life Get Togethers bring people of different generations together to share, to reconnect children with where food comes from, making grow or cook food. It’s an excellent chance healthy, tasty and sustainable meals the norm for all to enjoy for children, teenagers and older people to bond, and to discover that people of all The state of children’s food in schools has The initiative is widely commissioned by ages and backgrounds aren’t really all that reached a crucial tipping point and by public health teams and taken up by schools different. The positive effects of hosting a 2024, four in 10 children leaving primary across the country – over 1,100 School Get Together will reach beyond the school school will be overweight or obese. Awards have been achieved and over 5,000 gates and curriculum, and with loneliness on Now more than ever, schools need to schools have enrolled in the network. the increase, a Get Together is a great place good food at the centre of pupil’s Results highlight the clear health way to connect pupils with the plates, curriculum and wider learning. and economic benefits of wider community. In fact, Schools already work hard to manage the Food for Life award. it’s been reported that O ne overloaded schedules and ever-present budget Independent evaluation has over nine million people of the m restrictions. However, schools need not go it shown that if all primary across the UK often or o s t reward alone in their continued efforts to improve schools were Food always feel lonely. i n of emb g ways food culture amongst pupils, staff and parents. for Life schools, one Hollywood Primary The Soil Association’s Food for Life million more children School and Anita Stone Food fo odying the programme works proactively to reconnect would eat five or more Court in Birmingham through r Life spirit is children with where food comes from, portions of fruit and teamed up to run organis ing a making healthy, tasty and sustainable vegetables per day. their first Get Together Get Tog eth meals the norm for all to enjoy. What is more, with incredible results. event er From teaching children how food is research by the New One little girl, who had grown, to cooking up delicious meals whilst Economics Foundation spent her first year at championing the importance of well-sourced demonstrated £3 in social school refusing to speak, ingredients, working with Food for Life gets return for every £1 invested in caused her teachers to well up pupils digging into healthier food that will feed Food for Life Served Here Menus – when she sang in front of everyone; an their mind, body and community connections. the results extend far beyond the lunch overwhelming achievement. E Issue 25.1 | EDUCATION BUSINESS MAGAZINE




Healthy Eating

Derbyshire schools start Food for Life programme Soil Association’s Food for Life Served Here programme has been working with school caterers across Derbyshire, supporting them to provide healthy school meals, great lunchtimes and food education that has a positive impact on both pupils and the wider community.

From teaching children how food is grown, to cooking up delicious meals whilst championing the importance of wellsourced ingredients, working with Food for Life gets pupils digging into healthier food that will feed their mind, body and community connections.  Following the same event, a care home resident with dementia remembered the child they were partnered with after the sessions and asked when they’d be coming again. It’s clear that when different generations come together over food, amazing things happen. A 2017 investigation found that intergenerational contact successfully reduces ageism towards older adults. Teachers are huge fans of the scheme. A Year Five teacher in Bristol said: “I love having all the parents and grandparents in. It reminds the children that we’re all part of a wider community than the school building itself. It creates a family dining experience and reinvigorates the idea of healthy eating and eating together.” Get inspired If you’re feeling inspired, here are some ideas for Get Togethers to get you started. On 25 February it is pancake day. Homemade pancakes are delicious, wholesome and fresh. Get the kids and older people whisking up the batter, load them up with fresh fruit or some healthy savoury fillings and serve warm. On 8 March, it is International Woman’s Day. Can you think of an amazing and inspiring woman, foodie or otherwise? Why not bring your community together and share stories of the women who have inspired you? People of all genders welcome, of course. From 27 April to 1 May, it is Grandparent Gardening Week, and it is not just for grandparents; people of all ages can benefit from spending time outdoors and in nature with others. Invite aunties, uncles,

community leaders or local legends along to get together with younger people from nursery school children to youth groups. FFL is a big supporter of Eden Project Communities’ The Big Lunch scheme on 6-7 June. Get the bunting up and the picnic blankets out and invite the community in for a sarnie and some home baked treats prepared by your pupils. The United Nations World Food Day on 16 October is all about making healthy and sustainable diets affordable and accessible to everyone. Why not raise awareness with a harvest festival breakfast? Improving food education Of course, you can host a Get Together any time of year – it doesn’t need to be on one of the days we’ve suggested. From farm visits to flipping pancakes, improving food education and school meals can be fun and kick-start more than you might initially realise. Make 2020 the year your school steps up to the plate, making food, health and social interactions a top priority. The results will be far-reaching and beneficial to your pupils, school finances and the wider community. Find out more and register at www. where you can make the most of our free resources. To find out more about the Food for Life programme, visit the website below. L FURTHER INFORMATION

Derbyshire County Council produces and serves more than 50,000 school meals to children across the county every day which are all freshly prepared using locally sourced, sustainable ingredients, including organic beef, MSC Certified fish and free-range eggs as part of the Food for Life Served Here scheme it supports. Championing local suppliers within the county, food sourcing includes eggs and milk from Holdsworth Foods in Chesterfield, fruit and vegetables from both John Palin and Tomson Buxton in Buxton, and Beef from Lowerhurst Organic. Derbyshire County Council is promoting the quality of its school food and FFLSH with a tasting programme during the autumn term. Each primary school will be offering free samples of food to parents and carers in the playground either before or after school on a selected date. Providing a fantastic opportunity to meet up and let them try food first hand which their children will be enjoying in school. Hady Primary School in Chesterfield was one of the first schools to host a tasting session which took place in November last year. Parents were invited into the school hall to enjoy samples of tomato quiche, carrot cake and warm homemade rolls. It was a great success and shows the commitment of the school and the catering team working together. Derbyshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Health and Communities Councillor Carol Hart said: “Our school catering service provides more than 50,000 meals across the county every day as part of its commitment to ensuring Derbyshire children have a happy, healthy start in life which also helps them to learn well. “Our teams work hard to provide children with well-balanced, nutritious food and, with the help of the Food for Life programme, pupils are also learning about where their food comes from.”



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How active are our children? How positively children and young people feel about sport and physical activity generally declines with age, with activity levels peaking when children are aged 5-7 and again at the end of primary school. We explore this and other findings from Sport England’s report According to Sport England’s second annual Active Lives Children and Young People Survey, there has been an increase of 3.6 per cent in the number of children in England doing an average of 60 minutes or more of physical activity a day in the academic year 2018/19. That means that 46.8 per cent of the nation’s children and young people are meeting the recommended level, with the increase driven by more out of school activity – including increases in active play, team sports and walking. Government guidelines recommend that children and young people should get 30 minutes of their daily physical activity in the school day and 30 minutes outside of school. The figures show that 57.2 per cent of children are doing 30 minutes or more of physical activity outside of school, compared to 40.4 per cent at school. At the other end of the scale, 2.1 million children and young people (29 per cent) are doing fewer than 30 minutes of physical activity a day, and while that number is down (by 3.9 per cent over the last year) it’s a reminder of how much more needs to be done.

In the middle, another 1.7 million children and young people within its remit of (24.2 per cent) children are ‘fairly active’ – responsibility for sport and physical activity taking part in average of 30-59 minutes a day. outside of school from the age of five. Inequalities illustrated by last year’s report remain, with 54 per cent of Activity at school vs out of school children from the most affluent families There’s a difference in the amount of sport considered active compared to 42 per and physical activity that takes place at cent from the least affluent families – school, compared to activity levels outside while from the age of five up, boys are of school – 40.4 per cent of children are more active than girls at every age. active at school for an average of 30 The survey also shows that active minutes per day, while 57.2 per cent children are happier, more resilient of children are active outside of and more trusting of others school for the same duration Guidelin and it’s also shown a – an increase of 4.6 per positive association cent on last year. recomm es end between being At school, increases that chil d active and higher have been seen for r e n g et minutes levels of mental Years 3-6 (ages 7-11) of their 30 wellbeing, individual - however, secondary daily physical a development school-age young c t iv in the sc it and community people have seen hool da y y and 30 minu development. no change and the tes outs Sport England, as youngest children (Years ide o f s chool part of its strategy 1-2) have seen a decrease. Towards an Active Nation, This is seen across boys is investing £194 million in and girls. E Issue 25.1 | EDUCATION BUSINESS MAGAZINE


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Gender, age and ethnicity While there have been increases in both boys’ and girls’ activity levels, boys are more likely to be active than girls with a gap of 319,200 between the numbers of boys who achieve the recommended amount of sport and physical activity (51 per cent or 1.8m) and the number of girls that do (43 per cent or 1.5m).

In Years 9-11 (ages 13-16) there’s only been an increase in activity levels for girls, and not boys, with an increase of 3.5 per cent (29,800 number) doing an average of 60+ minutes a day. Asian and Black children are most likely to do less than an average of 30 minutes activity a day. How positively children and young people feel about sport and physical activity generally declines with age. Activity levels peak when children are aged 5-7, and again at the end of primary school (age 11-12). Children are more likely to be active at these points than at any other time during their primary or secondary education. Children and young people aged 13-16 (Years 9-11) are the least likely to be active. There are more active children than less active children across all age groups. Active play and informal activities remain the most common way for children in younger age groups (Years 1-6) to be active. Team sports become more common as

40.4 per cent of children are active at school for an average of 30 minutes per day, while 57.2 per cent of children are active outside of school for the same duration – an increase of 4.6 per cent

children get older. By secondary school age, team sports are the most common group of activities.


 Family affluence While there have been increases in activity levels across all levels of family affluence, children and young people from families who are less affluent are still least likely to be active (42 per cent of children in this group are active for an average of 60 minutes+ a day, compared to 54 per cent of children and young people from families of high affluence.) They are also least likely to enjoy being active – 43 per cent of children from low affluence families say they enjoy being active vs 59 per cent from high affluent families (a 16 per cent gap). Boys from the least affluent families are more likely to be active than girls.

Attitudes to sport and activity The first Active Lives Children and Young People survey showed that enjoyment above all other elements of physical literacy is the biggest driver of children’s activity levels. The new survey shows that girls are less likely to enjoy being active than boys, with the biggest gap between the genders found around confidence and enjoyment. More physically literate children are more likely to be active. Physically literate children are happier, more resilient and more trusting of others. The number of positive attitudes is the key driver of how active children are. This survey gives the most comprehensive overview of the sport and physical activity habits of children in England. It looks at the number of children taking part in a wide range of sport and physical activities (ranging from dance and scooting to active play and team sports) at moderate intensity, both at school and out of school. The report is based on responses from over 130,000 children aged 5-16 in England during the academic year 2018/2019, making it the largest study of its kind. L FURTHER INFORMATION



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The government and the wider public sector are the largest clients of the construction industry. Evidence shows that they are major influencers and play an important role in encouraging and facilitating the uptake of offsite building technologies. Here Jackie Maginnis, chief executive of the Modular and Portable Building Association (MPBA), considers the benefits of volumetric modular methods for the education sector. With the department for education just announcing that the new School Building Programme will focus on modern methods of construction – the shift towards innovative factory-based building methods has been verified. The firms which have secured spots on its £3bn offsite framework have been confirmed, which I’m delighted to report includes members of the MPBA. The levels of confidence in the sector in respect of the long-term viability of offsite technology is greater than previously witnessed and is underpinned now by the consistent and joined-up messages from government. Around 30 schools a year will be built over the next four years and volumetric modular technology will play a major role in achieving the education department’s latest school building programme.

The optimum technology: volumetric modular construction Ideal learning environments Offsite manufacture encompasses a variety Delivering benefits that will have a huge of panelised and volumetric modular positive impact on cost, programme, methods of construction. At the forefront quality and safety – volumetric modular of offsite techniques, modular building technology brings the longstanding traditional has had a remarkable impact on reducing practices of developing new schools, costs while increasing quality and safety colleges and universities – up to date. measures. Having gained considerable Modular buildings within the education momentum over the past few years, modular sector have come a long way since the cabins construction makes up 60-70 per cent of of old and are now considered an ideal offsite manufacture and reduces build learning environment for students. Advances times by an impressive 50-60 per cent. in volumetric modular design The demand for customisation, and finish, combined with particularly in the education contract specifications The sector, has led the modular that are often limited extende manufacturing industry in terms of timescales to develop methods for and budget, have lifecycle d adaptation during mass boosted the o f modula production while meeting demand for this r u n its means individual customer needs. E technology and are no that they offsite techniques.

Written by Jackie Maginnis, chief executive, Modular and Portable Building Association (MPBA)

With the Department for Education announcing that the new School Building Programme will focus on modern methods of construction – the shift towards innovative, factory-based building methods has been verified, writes Jackie Maginnis, chief executive of the Modular and Portable Building Association

Design & Build

The shift towards modular technology

Design options for volumetric modular buildings now include popular turnkey finishes, enabling education authorities to create ready-made classrooms tailored to the specific needs of the school. With this ready-to-go option, modular buildings provide an instant advantage to those who need a cost-effective and bespoke solution to utilise all the space available effectively. In contrast to traditional building methods, the versatility of modules means that they can be used as a temporary or permanent structure, together with extending existing facilities. In some cases, this provides options for fully functional school buildings to be removed and reused elsewhere if required. The extended lifecycle of modular units means that they are now available to buy new or recycled and can be designed to fit into even the most logistically difficult locations.

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Design & Build

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 Volumetric modular practices augment the construction industry with a multitude of benefits that span from greener, healthier environments to maximised sustainability, heavily reduced costs and quick build times. Volumetric technology allows providers to customise any modular building to meet exacting needs and blend in with surroundings. Each individual material can be selected specifically for its performance characteristics, tailoring every inch of a modular build. Eco-friendly materials are often specified, and waste is recycled for future projects wherever possible. Not only this, but components are also available in a range of sizes for expansions whenever necessary. As units are factory manufactured, stringent quality control processes can be undertaken within these well-managed environments. These conditions also prevent weather from inhibiting the manufacturing process, guaranteeing efficiency. On top of this, modular construction enables site work and building processes to be completed simultaneously, reducing labour costs and build times. Though the benefits of volumetric modular building have been known for decades, critical success factors and large-scale enablers for optimal industrial modularisation have only recently underlined the need for engineering, procurement and construction project delivery systems to be developed for the optimum use of modular technology. Smart alternatives As a smart alternative to traditional building methods, modular construction offers numerous unrivalled benefits to the education sector, including a faster return on investment as site work and building processes can be completed simultaneously. Manufacturing in factory-controlled environments mitigates the constraints of weather dependency and the risk of moisture becoming trapped in structures. Achieving minimal waste and

Around 30 schools a year will be built over the next four years and volumetric modular technology will play a major role in achieving the education department’s latest school building programme. environmentally friendly construction processes, modular building is a sustainable step towards combatting climate change and air pollution. Another benefit is that modular units can be easily transported, providing rapid solutions for required premises. Modular buildings can be easily disassembled and relocated, and refurbishments can be easily facilitated, making them ideal for temporary and permanent applications. What’s more, components are available in a range of sizes and can be customised to meet exacting requirements for internal and external finishes. Increasing capacity With the school-age population set to increase by 5.5 per cent in the next two years, these advantages enable urgent education buildings to be delivered faster and importantly, achieving minimum disruption and permitting education providers to continue delivering vital services by remaining largely operational. By promoting increased efficiency, frameworks also lower wastage across the construction lifecycle. Increased regulation of waste has led to education frameworks seeking progressively sustainable solutions to minimise CO2 emissions, reduce or even eliminate waste and make use of recyclable materials. Modular building techniques reduce waste on site, as the majority of

the build can take place offsite, where it is easier to control and recycle materials. Once considered the budget option for low cost hotels, modular technology is now considered to be the optimum solution to deliver high quality, energy efficient education builds and student accommodation – on time and within budget. About MPBA As the single recognised voice, the MPBA plays a key role in the connecting of sectors in the modular and portable building industry. These can be designed and manufactured from timber, concrete and steel, in any size and shape to meet individual client needs while ensuring full compliance with building regulations. With MPBA’s assistance, offsite construction companies remain ever competitive in the modular and portable building industry. The association is represented on committees for BSI, LPCB-Expert Group D and works with BRE, LABC, CLG, NHS, Cskills-CITB, Carbon Trust, NHS and many more to represent the industry. The association collaborates with specialist technical advisors to enhance innovation in the design and manufacture of modular buildings. To discover how modular technology can benefit education developments, visit the website below. L FURTHER INFORMATION



The future is in good hands


Today’s children and teens are the engineers of the future... They are also the architects, politicians and teachers, the next generation of writers and artists, potential movers and shakers that will affect and influence others. Our responsibility then, should be to make every effort to enable them to achieve their full, unique potential. To do this, we have to ensure youngsters’ comfort and well-being throughout their formative years and beyond. The cornerstone to this is comfortable seating. But no two children are the same size or shape; and often an individual has special postural requirements.

Thankfully, the days of hard-back, wooden school pews are a thing of the past. Ergonomic, paediatric seating is now available on a unique madeto-measure basis, designed specifically for children and teens with postural issues or disabilities. For the first time, Kids’ chairs can adapt to changing and growing needs. This helps enable independence and engagement by relieving issues with pressure and mobility. Individual seating, with unlimited customisation possibilities provides postural support, making functional activities easier.

Experience, expertise and ground-breaking research has given rise to a new breed of chair. Ergokids chairs offer increased pelvic stability with improved trunk and head alignment. Optimum postural support helps respiratory function, and all chairs feature variable pressure relief options for increased comfort. Easier transfers are another welcome benefit. Changing and growing needs of individuals, means ergoKids chairs are simple in design and operation, have modular components and a non-clinical look. They feature multiple tilt / adjustment functions and are completely customisable. Ergochair is the pioneer at the forefront of a revolution in the way we approach children and teens and their potential. Thank goodness we are indeed in safe hands.



Every child in the UK has the right to a highquality education that gives them the best start in life. However, faced with a growing population, an impending boom in numbers of school children and an unfavourable funding model, many cash-strapped local authorities are feeling the pressure. Unless a step change takes place quickly, the effect on the overall standard of education and the wider economy will be felt for generations to come. School places capacity crisis Our latest research, the School Places Challenge 2019, reveals that by the academic year 2021/22, more than 385,000 additional pupils will be entering England’s primary and secondary school system. This creates the urgent need for 12,835 extra classrooms to be built and ready for intake. This isn’t just limited to England; it is a national problem - Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland will see an additional 33,179 pupils enter the school system by 2020/21, with the need for an extra 1,136 classrooms. In total, we need 640 new schools across the UK by 2021/2022. This is the fourth iteration of our report looking at the school places capacity crisis, and whilst local authorities have made great strides in increasing the number of primary schools, these children are now moving on

A robust strategy to secondary education and the demand has In order to see a real step-change in delivery, shifted. In March, record numbers of children the government and local authorities missed out on their first choice of secondary must collectively focus on implementing school and appeals against secondary a robust strategy and solutions which school offers have doubled in six years. provide engaging, modern spaces for For the last two years, the government teaching and learning. A fairer education has been pre-occupied with Brexit and funding model would ensure that local education has ultimately fallen down the authorities and central government work political agenda to the detriment of the more closely together to set budgets that next generation. But we can’t expect local reflect local need. Local authorities playing authorities to provide the new schools and a part in judging and approving free school classrooms they need while contending with proposals is critical if we want to create new decreasing budgets and limited options. schools where they are needed the most. Further innovation is needed if they are Additionally, local authorities need expected to squeeze more out of less. cost certainty, value for money and The Conservative party now has a majority timely delivery, to ensure that there are for the first time in a decade and our new more high-quality schools for parents Department for Education has the power and their children to choose from. to address the urgent need for school We are committed to helping our public places by providing local authorities with sector colleagues deliver new fair budgets in line with local needs and schools for their communities population growth. Ahead of the that provide positive election campaign, Boris Johnson On learning environments, had pledged to increase school average on time and spending by £7.1 billion by is 30 pe it on budget. By 2022-23, however the Institute minimising for Fiscal Studies has said this faster t r cent o produ disruption and will result in spending per plans fo ce supporting pupil being “no higher than r a modu greater levels it was 13 years earlier”. la of operational in compr building efficiency, together to a tra arison we can deliver ditiona environments that l build positively contribute to the learning experience. Early engagement, true collaboration and open dialogue E

Written by Mark Robinson, chief executive, Scape Group

By the academic year 2021/22, more than 385,000 additional pupils will be entering England’s primary and secondary school system, creating a need for extra classrooms. Mark Robinson explains how modern methods of construction can tackle the challenge

Design & Build

The framework for delivering school places

Paxton School



Gerflor to the rescue at flood-damaged Torquay Boys Grammar School Torquay Boys Grammar school has a very proud history and can trace its roots back to 1904. Even in those days overcrowding was a problem and Torquay Secondary School, as it had become, was opened in April 1915 with 170 boys. Today, Torquay Boys Grammar School now has 1120 boys and girls in six houses with extensive building programmes taking place in the last 30 years to keep their facilities up to date. The school now stands as one of the top 20 boys’ schools in the country and is forever moving forward in the drive to providing an education, both academic and cultural, to rival that found anywhere in the country. At Torquay Boys Grammar School, they also believe that it’s important that students can choose from, and experience a wide range of physical activities, which caters for all abilities. When the school urgently needed to replace their existing wooden floor in their main hall due to flooding, they turned to international flooring specialist Gerflor to supply over 600m2 of their world-renowned Taraflex® Performance vinyl sports flooring. The main hall at Torquay Boys Grammar School is used for a mixture of sports activities including health and fitness, racket

sports, team sports and gymnastics, so a sports floor that could deliver performance, safety and durability would be paramount in the final choice of the replacement flooring. Achieving a first-class installation that would be on budget, on time and as importantly, meet the stringent requirements that the school would insist on was a challenge well-met by Plymouth- based Roberts Flooring. Dave Moran, managing director of Roberts Flooring commented: “The school had previously had an unfortunate flooding incident which caused their current timber sprung sports floor to swell and become defective.” On the new specification Dave Moran stated: “We approached Gerflor to help propose a suitable solution and it was decided that their Taraflex Performance

9mm thick sports flooring system would be the best answer due to its versatile range of applications as it was suitable for a sporting and educational environment. We settled on Mint Green as the optimum colour as it would really compliment the sports line markings that were added to the new floor.“ Gerflor have more than 70 years of experience with their Taraflex® sports flooring. It offers a wide range of colours and is suitable for a variety of applications. Taraflex® sports floors have been made since 1947 and used by the largest international sports federations (volleyball, handball, badminton, table tennis) for decades. Through partnerships with these federations, Gerflor has been present at the Summer Olympic Games since 1976. It’s an Olympic pedigree stretching back over an incredible 43 years. Learn more about Gerflor solutions, ask for a free sample or contact us to speak to a specialist today. FURTHER INFORMATION 01926 622 600

COVER EVERY INCH OF THE HALL. It’s...Where Champions Play Taraflex® is the most widely specified indoor sports surface in the world. Chosen by top international athletes for its unique construction and technical performance, it has been fitted at every Olympic Games since 1976. Taraflex® provides industry leading innovation and is widely recognised and installed in the education sectors with over 6 million pupils everyday enjoying the benefits of Taraflex® sports flooring. Contact us now for your free site survey. 01926 622600 @GerflorSportsUK



Smart buildings The future of school building must focus on an education-first approach to design, and we need to be constantly challenging ourselves to be more efficient, innovative and smart in the provision of school places. Using innovative solutions such as standardised design and technologies such as offsite construction is the key to this. Modern Methods of Construction (MMC) not only enable more efficient project delivery, but can also cost local authorities significantly less, whilst creating high-quality spaces for pupils to thrive. On average it is 30 per cent faster to produce plans for a modular building in comparison to a traditional build, which means it is possible to reach ‘design freeze’ earlier. This allows architects to spend more time considering how staff and pupils will use the building and its spaces from day to day. However, the opportunities created by modular and offsite construction have yet to be fully embraced. The government, local authorities and the construction industry must work together to ensure that Modern Methods of Construction sit at the heart of the solution. This could involve a review of planning policy to see pre-approved modular designs ‘fast-tracked’ through the planning system or pieces of land allocated specifically for modular construction. On top of this, greater collaboration between councils and developers is needed to ensure that secondary schools are built in major urban development’s first through

Sir Henry Floyd Grammar School

Design & Build

 have helped us deliver over 15,000 school places for local communities over the last three years. Whilst value for money means different things to different people, our holistic approach embeds a 20 per cent minimum social value requirement on every public sector project, ensuring that we can create social value not only through the physical environments they help to create and maintain, but also the economic activity they generate, both locally and nationally.

Mark Robinson, chief executive officer, SCAPE Group

The future of school building must focus on an education-first approach to design, and we need to be constantly challenging ourselves to be more efficient, innovative and smart in the provision of school places. agreements between developers seeking planning permission and the local planning authority (Section 106 agreements), so that the area is prepared to meet increased demand. Increasingly, schools are being included within masterplans for large-scale redevelopment projects,

but so far this has focused heavily on primary schools and needs to be expanded to include secondary schools too. As local authorities have experienced progressive budget cuts, they have become increasingly under strain to deliver with less. However, by comparing our performance against ESFA costs per school place scorecards, we know that we’re around 15 per cent cheaper than the national average. Additionally, we have helped clients build brand-new primary schools in as little as 37 weeks. Education isn’t a choice; it is a fundamental right and our children deserve the best chance to succeed. Until the government takes more pragmatic action, they cannot claim to be safeguarding the futures of the UK’s young people. However, original thinking and collaboration between the public and private sector will go some way to ensuring we give the next generation a fighting chance. Unless we think and act more creatively now, the challenge of school place provision is only going to get worse. Good schools are the bedrock of our society, and there really can’t be any room for error. L FURTHER INFORMATION



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The benefits of producing your own green electricity Think you have exhausted all cost saving options? Fronius Renewable Energy Solutions discuss how you can reduce building energy overheads even further and protect your organisation from future price hikes for years to come It’s not surprising that energy costs are a significant portion of an organisation’s overheads. Workstations, machinery, lighting, air conditioning, EV charging, the list of energy hungry appliances is exhaustive, but despite the development of more efficient technologies, we continue to encounter constant energy price increases and the emergence of new electricity-reliant innovations. Facility / energy managers are already on the case when it comes to renegotiating contracts and switching energy providers, or at least they should be. But it is possible to significantly reduce the business’ electricity costs much further, whilst also protecting it from rising energy costs. What you can achieve Installing Solar PV allows you to achieve immediate savings by producing your own green electricity, but with a considerable initial investment required and payback period that could take years, this has often led to companies considering the investment, but putting it off or deciding against it entirely. This is where leading solar inverter manufacturer, Fronius, has a solution. With their short and unique leasing model it is possible to achieve huge savings from day one, with zero upfront investment. Unlike Power Purchase Agreements, this model simply allows you to lease the equipment required to generate your own green electricity over a 15 year period, with the option of ownership thereafter.

Specialising in the highly efficient and intelligent conversion and control of energy for over 70 years, Fronius has partnered with some of the UK’s biggest brands to deliver financial savings, carbon reductions and energy independence. Fronius technology is also helping education establishments up and down the country to achieve their clean energy goals, including Cranfield University’s recent 1MW solar farm installation. Beate Ruebig, managing director of Fronius UK comments: “We recognised that the upfront cost associated with a Solar PV installation was prohibiting some companies from achieving enormous savings with the technology. Our vision is to see a future powered 100 per cent by renewables, so we wanted to open up the opportunity to businesses so they can produce their own green electricity and this spurred the creation of our unique lease offering that offers customers savings from day one and greatly reduces their carbon footprint.” Throughout the duration of the lease, the monthly fixed payments will be lower than the cost of that same electricity if purchased from the energy supplier at today’s rate KWh for kWh. (This is based on consumption remaining as per the original calculations in the quote and the accuracy of data provided by you). This enables you to make huge savings from the outset and protects you against increasing energy

prices for years into the future. Furthermore – there is a production guarantee for the duration of the contract. This means that if the system produces less than guaranteed, a reimbursement will be issued for the underperformance – a risk-free arrangement. Gone are the days of feed-in tariffs where the aim was to send as much electricity back to the grid as possible in exchange for a nice sum. Instead, the system should be sized to generate as precisely as possible the amount of electricity required to run the building within peak hours during the day. After completing a thorough analysis of the roof or land space available and current electricity usage, the optimal size and set-up can be established. A certified Fronius Service Partner will install the PV system to the highest specification. High quality engineering drives everything that Fronius does, so you can rest assured you’ll be getting the highest quality products from the very best manufacturers. There are no ongoing maintenance costs, this is all included. You won’t need to worry about maintenance or insurance of the system throughout the duration of the lease. It really is a win-win. Please note, the lease does not replace your electricity bill completely. Although the system is optimally sized for your building’s consumption, electricity required above that generated, or used in non-daylight hours will still be taken from the national grid and billed via the energy supplier. The message here is clear: Don’t miss out on the benefits of photovoltaics for your organisation because investment priorities lie elsewhere right now. Find out how much you could save now, below. L FURTHER INFORMATION 01908 512300


Poor energy efficiency in school buildings does more than frustrate staff and students – it can drive up bills by tens of thousands of pounds. There are many quick and easy ways for schools to save energy – but if their buildings are draughty, energy-hungry or poorly designed, cutting costs will always be an uphill struggle. The need to lower energy use is also fuelled by the growing climate emergency. There are a host of tools and approaches to help schools tackle energy use – from student energy clubs to smart software that pinpoints key causes of energy waste. But when it comes to tomorrow’s school buildings, the concept of ‘passive design’ could help lower bills and fight the climate crisis while keeping staff and students happy and comfortable. What is passive design? Passive design maximises the use of natural sources of heating, cooling and ventilation to create comfortable conditions inside buildings. It harnesses environmental conditions such as solar radiation and cool night air to control the indoor environment – cutting the need for gas and electricity. Passive design is on the rise, driven by society’s growing interest in sustainability. A passive design project in Norwich won the 2019 Stirling Prize, the UK’s most prestigious architecture award. The award-winning project is a social housing development – proving that this approach isn’t just for high-end homes or offices. And the concept has already had an impact at schools in the UK and beyond.

Written by Alex Green, schools programme manager, Ashden

When it comes to tomorrow’s school buildings, the concept of ‘passive design’ could help lower bills and fight the climate crisis while keeping staff and students happy and comfortable

Design & Build

Passive design: the future of our schools?

One piece of the puzzle Even though they generate savings, many passive design features currently bring a slightly higher up-front financial cost than less sustainable alternatives – although growth in passive design should bring prices down. The spread of this concept into schools will rely on governments taking a more long-term approach to education funding (and showing a genuine ambition to take on the climate crisis). But it could be one way the UK meets its target of net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, while also inspiring future generations with examples of sustainability in action. Realistically, the UK Government will need a wide package of measures to address the climate impact of school buildings – including retrofitting older buildings, as well as higher standards for those yet to be built. So passive design will only ever be one tool in our efforts to address a complex challenge. Experts in passive design are often used to boost sustainability in other ways – for example by using locally sourced materials, or lower-impact ones such as sustainable timber. These steps are crucial because day-to-day energy use is just one part of a building’s carbon footprint. In fact, the World Green Building Council has said that embodied carbon – emissions purely related to construction, rather than building use – makes up 11 per cent of the global emissions total.

Clean energy unites communities Schools can also go green and save money by generating electricity themselves. There are organisations across the country helping them Award-winning projects do this – Oxfordshire’s Low St Luke’s School has passive design at its heart. Carbon Hub has helped The Wolverhampton primary won its communities install designer, architecture firm Architype, Passive solar panels on 10 per an Ashden Award for sustainable design cent of the county’s buildings. Passive measures used maximi schools. Schemes at St Luke’s and elsewhere of natu ses the use it supports lower include efficient insulation and r a l energy bills by an orienting the building so large s o u heating rces of average of 28 per windows face south, allowing , c o o ling and ventilat cent. Repowering, winter sunlight to penetrate ion to c another social the building and bring extra r c o m fortableeate enterprise, helps heat. To tackle the problem of conditio disadvantaged summer overheating, carefully ns communities in located north-facing windows London harness the allow extra light in without driving benefits of renewable up temperatures. The building fabric is energy. As well as supporting air-tight to eliminate draughts, with controlled schools, it has given young people training and ventilation through specially designed vents. skills for the future – showing how investing in St Faith’s Prep School in Cambridge sustainability brings a huge range of benefits. used a passive design for a new building Finally, cutting energy use is at the heart completed in just seven weeks. The building of Ashden’s LESS CO2 programme. This features a timber frame with compressed programme helps schools share advice and newspaper for insulation, and a green roof best practice, and has already lowered bills with plant growth to help insulate the in hundreds of schools across the UK. The building. The roof also collects rainwater programme relies on harnessing the enthusiasm to top up a nearby pond. Energy use is of staff and students, who are often keen to even lower than the school predicted. see their school become more sustainable. So Passive design can be a greater or smaller as well as protecting budgets, greener school feature of any building project. Passivhaus, a buildings can encourage the actions and globally-recognised passive design standard, attitude changes, both at school and at home, calls for thorough use of passive design that we need to create a brighter future. L throughout the building – and as a result can deliver huge energy savings. But this standard can involve a larger initial cost, and FURTHER INFORMATION many passive ideas can easily be introduced into more mainstream building designs.



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Protecting child health from increasing air pollution Recent studies have indicated that planting hedging or green screening products around areas frequented for outdoor leisure time can significantly benefit the air quality within that area, providing a less polluted, cleaner and safer environment Since 2006, Hedges Direct has been the UK’s leading online specialist supplier of hedging and other garden plants to trade and retail customers. Over recent years, evolving environmental issues has seen Hedges Direct become proactive in its aim to both educate and provide effective, sustainable, green solutions. However, it is pollution from traffic fumes and particulate matter, now reaching high and illegal levels on a regular basis across the country, that needs urgent attention. Currently, one in three children and young adults are growing up exposed to unsafe levels of air pollution. The effects can be highly detrimental leading to narrowing of airways, prevalence to lung diseases like asthma and even affected brain development. However, recent studies have indicated that planting hedging or green screening products around areas frequented for outdoor leisure time, can significantly benefit the air quality within that area providing a less polluted, cleaner and safer environment. To test this theory, in June 2019 in conjunction with Channel 4’s Dispatches programme, Hedges Direct supplied Ivy Screens and other hedging plants for a ground-breaking experiment at Lordship Lane Primary School in London. The school is located in a heavily trafficked area at risk of excessive pollution levels. Over a two week period, the programme makers documented an experiment which saw the school undergo changes externally and internally to attempt to combat the effects of air pollution throughout. Levels of both Nitrogen Dioxide from exhaust fumes and other particulate matter from brakes and tyres produced by all vehicles (including electric), were measured before and after for comparison. For the external anti-pollution measures, Ivy screens, 1.8m high by 1.2m wide, were installed as a perimeter solution around the school exterior to attempt to absorb sooty particles from traffic pollution and provide cleaner air for the children when spending time outside. A garden was also created in the playground area featuring evergreen hedging plants to supplement this. Prior to the experiment, the Nitrogen Dioxide levels and other particulates around the school were found to be over fifty per cent higher than recommended levels. At the end of the two week period, levels were measured again with significant results. In the playground and external areas of the school, the planting measures introduced had reduced pollution levels by


as much as fifty three per cent - a substantial reduction within a very short timeframe. These results are also supported by the recent findings of the University of Surrey’s study undertaken by their Global Centre for Clean Air Research. For schools and nurseries in heavily trafficked areas across the UK, of which there are over two thousand that fall into high or illegal levels of pollution areas, this information is crucial, as despite measures being taken by the motor industry to reduce pollutants from vehicles, substantial reductions and new government legislation to enforce change will take time. With documented evidence confirming that green infrastructure can significantly reduce exposure to harmful toxins and particles from air and traffic pollution, schools in affected areas now have the option to access affordable, interim green solutions, which can provide immediate health benefits until long-term solutions are found. Hedges Direct supply a comprehensive range of hedging plants and green screening, all of which can help in reducing environmental toxins, particularly at exhaust level. However, whilst any type of hedging will negate some of the effects of air and traffic pollution, it relies on leaf cover to do so. For that reason we recommend evergreen species not deciduous, for leaf cover throughout the year. This will ensure optimal reduction of toxins with regard to improved air quality in the immediate locale. The faster growing evergreens with denser foliage such as Cherry Laurel or

Western Red Cedar will provide the maximum benefit in the shortest time period, however any evergreen that can grow to a reasonable height and density will have beneficial and more importantly, long-lasting efficacy. For urban locations, areas with restricted space or security and privacy considerations, ivy screens and other hedging screens are an instant solution. These evergreen screens consist of a galvanised steel frame and trough from which ivy or other hedging plants are trained and grown over the framework. Being narrow in depth they are spacesaving, and are easily moved and installed. Installation can be permanent or in planters for versatility. Once mature with full leaf cover, the evergreen foliage becomes highly effective in reducing toxins and in creating privacy with added security, which is often a plus point for schools. Available in a range of sizes and species, there are options to suit. For expert advice on anti-pollution measures, planting requirements and bespoke educational pricing, call the Hedges Direct trade team on 01257 491373 or email L FURTHER INFORMATION


Air Quality

Ensure classrooms are regularly cleaned to reduce dust, and that damp or mould is removed. Repairs may be needed to prevent further damp and mould. Ensure that any air filtering or cleaning devices are regularly maintained. Finally, schools can work with the local authority, through ambient air quality action plans, and with parents or carers to reduce traffic and idling vehicles close to the school. Pollution from roads A new University of Surrey study has found that simply planting a hedge in front of a park can halve the amount of traffic pollution that reaches children as they play. The study gives evidence on the positive impact that planting hedges and other forms of green infrastructure along busy roadsides will have on schools. Experts from Surrey’s Global Centre for Clean Air Research (GCARE) conducted a five-month continuous experiment, measuring traffic pollutants with the use of emerging pollution sensing technology behind and in front of a hedge that shielded a children’s park in Guildford. The aim of the study was to measure any discernible With mounting evidence linking poor air quality – both indoors difference in pollution reduction during and outdoors – to poor respiratory problems in children, we look the vegetation cycle of a Beech hedge – from dormancy to green-up to maturity. at what schools can do to tackle the problem The results showed that a drop in pollution concentration levels behind the hedge was dominated by three factors – the weather, A joint report by Royal College of Paediatrics outdoor air and this is long overdue. It’s public holidays, and the stage of the hedge’s and Child Health (RCPCH) and the Royal harder to get population level data on the life cycle. The researchers reported reductions College of Physicians has highlighted quality of indoor air but the evidence in this of more than 50 per cent of the particulate increasing evidence linking indoor air pollution report paints a worrying picture. Children matter after the hedge’s green-up stage in and respiratory problems in children. in the UK spend most of their time indoors, late April. Experts believe that this could The report, ‘The Inside Story: Health with just 68 minutes spent outside on an be because the density of the hedge or the effects of indoor air quality on children average day. Too many of our homes and stickiness of the leaves had a sizable impact and young people’, presents evidence schools are damp and poorly ventilated – this on particle pollutants passing through it. linking indoor air pollution to a range is adversely affecting the health of children.” However, the results also revealed smaller of childhood health problems including Stephen Holgate, special advisor for the reductions for gaseous pollutants asthma, wheezing, conjunctivitis, dermatitis Royal College of Physicians said: including carbon monoxide and eczema. It examined the air in “Poorer households have fewer and nitrogen dioxide, and homes and in schools; the places where choices about where to T h e repor that wind direction had children spend most of their time. live and where to go to recomm t little impact on the The indoor air, and the pollutants present, school. More than three e that sch nds concentration levels. are the result of a complex set of factors. million families live in ools should Professor Prashant The air quality changes from building to poor quality housing in Kumar, founding building, place to place, over time, and the UK. Most will not ventilat use adequate ion to p Director of GCARE at the in response to the activities taking place have enough money revent the bui University of Surrey, said: indoors. The main way people are exposed to make improvements ld-up o “We believe our study is is by inhaling pollutants, but they can also and have no option h f armful the first to look at how a be ingested or absorbed through the skin. but to make do in polluta door hedge affects the pollution Materials used to construct and decorate with damp, undernts from traffic – assessing the buildings are long-term sources of ‘VOCs’ ventilated environments. influence of the vegetation (air-borne chemical compounds) and We need to offer support lifecycle, wind direction and other formaldehyde, and as buildings are becoming at local authority level – variables. The reduction in pollution more airtight to improve energy efficiency, likewise with schools. If we ask after the green-up stage gives valuable improved insulation must allow for adequate our children to spend their childhood information regarding where to install green ventilation to prevent pollutants building up. days in unhealthy spaces, then we’re infrastructure across our communities. The occupants of a building also storing up problems for future health.” “This study has not only produced unique affect its air quality by the activities they evidence and support for our advocacy to undertake. Cooking can create small What should schools do? install hedges and other forms of green particles, gases, and VOCs. Products The report recommends that schools should infrastructure (where appropriate) along busy we use for cleaning and cosmetics also use adequate ventilation to prevent the roadsides to protect schools, playgrounds release VOCs into the air. Showering after build-up of harmful indoor pollutants, and pedestrians/cyclists from air pollution school sport activities can cause moisture ventilating between classes if outdoor noise exposure; it has also provided a clear and can lead to damp or mould. causes a problem during lessons. If the school indication that evergreen species should be Jonathan Grigg, Paediatric Respiratory is located close to traffic, it may be best favoured for barriers against air pollution to Consultant from the RCPCH, said: “We’re to do this during off-peak periods, or open exploit their year-round performance.” E finally paying attention to the quality of our windows and vents away from the road.

Improving air quality inside and outside school




screens ltd

Urban Green Solutions Call: 01530 560 550


 Inner city issues The Mayor of London has funded a scheme where detailed air quality audits were carried out in 50 schools across 23 London boroughs. The audits assessed the air quality in some of the capital’s worst polluted schools and made a series of recommendations to protect pupils. As part of the programme the Mayor issued a £1 million fund which provided each of the 50 audited schools with a £10,000 starter grant and enabled any of the other London schools located in

areas exceeding legal air pollution limits to apply for green infrastructure funding. Now five of London’s most polluted boroughs - Newham, Islington, Southwark, Westminster and Brent - have announced they will be extending the air quality audit programme to help cut pollution in their schools. Newham council is extending air quality audits and the results will help target clean air initiatives which currently includes a ‘Healthy School Streets’ programme and ‘anti-idling’ campaigns.

Air Quality

A new University of Surrey study has found that simply planting a hedge in front of a park can halve the amount of traffic pollution that reaches children as they play.

Southwark Council intends to start air pollution audits in schools later this year. It is anticipated that all primary and secondary schools maintained by the council that are over the NO2 legal limit (based on 2016 modelled data) will be audited as well as every school in the Old Kent opportunity area. Private schools will have the opportunity to conduct an audit too making it 72 schools in total. Westminster has committed to ensure every education establishment (with the age ranges of 5 to 18 years old) are provided an Air Quality Audit. They have also allocated £1m of funding over four years to help primary schools after they have completed an air quality audit and received the report. Local authority schools, free schools and academies can apply for up to £10,000 each, and private schools can apply for up to £5,000. The money can be spent on building and highway improvements outside school and green infrastructure. Brent Council has since developed the ‘Breathe clean’ project, which has helped to raise awareness of poor air quality at most infant and primary schools in the borough, including an air quality presentation and NO2 diffusion tubes. A report will be published soon to find out where the air quality hotspots are so the council can take targeted audits and interventions at those schools. L FURTHER INFORMATION

Is it OK to have different standards for ventilation in schools? Schools deserve consistent indoor air quality The release of BB101: Ventilation, thermal comfort and indoor air quality 2018 lays out new standards for designers of ventilation systems in schools. Jonathon Hunter Hill of SAV considers the apparent disparity between requirements for mechanical and natural systems. For mechanical ventilation systems (driven by a fan), BB101 requires the daily average carbon dioxide (CO2 ) level be below 1,000 ppm, with a with a temperature differential (ΔT) between the air already in the room and the air entering the room of between 1.5°C and 4°C depending on room type. For natural ventilation systems (driven by buoyancy or wind), BB101 requires a daily average CO2 level of below 1,500 ppm, with a ΔT of 5°C for all room types. The average CO2 levels can each be exceeded by 500 ppm for no more than 20 consecutive minutes a day in both cases. Given these figures, one must question the logic of having different levels for mechanical and natural systems, as there is clear evidence that higher CO2 levels

have a detrimental effect on children’s performance in school. Surely the standards should be the same, irrespective of the type of equipment – BB101 should be focused on the result, not how it is achieved! A benefit of mechanical ventilation systems is they are predictable, whereas natural ventilation performance is affected by variable environmental factors. For example, when outdoor temperatures are high, high flow rates of incoming air will not cause uncomfortable draughts. In winter, however, flow rates have to be lowered to prevent draughts, thereby

limiting control of CO2 levels. Thus, in seemingly favouring natural systems over mechanical, BB101 is prioritising thermal comfort over indoor air quality (IAQ), essentially ignoring one to achieve the other. Designers should also take account of the requirement to filter fresh air in schools located in highly polluted built-up areas. Natural ventilation units do not have the necessary fan power to drive the air through the required filters. It would seem then, that the regulation is not designed to serve the buildings’ occupants, but to serve a product. Whether to ask more of natural ventilation units, or less of mechanical ventilation units, it stands to reason that children in British schools deserve a consistent quality of indoor environment in which to learn, with minimal pollution levels. FURTHER INFORMATION For more information, visit



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Protecting the future: overcoming the challenge of school security Installing perimeter security for schools and colleges can be challenging, requiring careful consideration of a range of important factors, from the needs of the staff, pupils and visitors accessing the premises, to the look of the school itself To help highlight the implications of designing and specifying perimeter security for schools, Jacksons Fencing has released a special report on school perimeter security. It is the first industry-wide assessment of security in educational sites based on original research in recent years; a comprehensive research project that takes in the opinions of school leaders, teachers and parents, as well as other stakeholders involved in ensuring the safety and protection of pupils and staff. 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 processes 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 a positive learning environment and security, which ensures the safety of everyone on site and avoids a fortress-like environment. Importantly, the report offers solutions to these falling security standards in UK schools, which, as the research has found, is widely

caused by a lack of school resources and information. One in three school leaders, for example, admitted they wouldn’t know whom to turn to for help with installing security systems. The report investigates how schools across the UK are facing increasing pressure to keep students safe with diminishing budgets and finds that many survey respondents are not happy with their school’s security measures. 31 per cent of teachers, for example, believe their school wasn’t designed with security in mind. Protecting the future ‘Protecting the Future’ is an indispensable tool offering expert insights from leading industry bodies, Secured by Design and the Association of British Insurers to Ofsted, as well as real‑life experiences of parents, students and school staff. This collective insight is hugely beneficial in assisting with the design and specification of perimeter security for schools. Managing director of Jacksons Fencing, Peter Jackson, also draws upon his years of knowledge and in-depth understanding of the sector to

share his advice on how to ensure school perimeters remain safe while providing adequate access to all site visitors. Introducing the report, Peter Jackson said: “Schools don’t just need classroom walls to keep children safe: they need a comprehensive security infrastructure around them. “With schools needing to keep more students present on site than ever before, weaknesses in current school perimeters are a worry to parents and teachers alike. With appropriate planning and execution, most – if not all these problems – are not insurmountable. The first thing to do is simply acknowledge that problems exist.” Jacksons Fencing has been at the forefront of fencing manufacturing for over 70 years, providing schools and all other types of businesses with the best in timber and steel fencing, made in the UK. As well as offering RoSPA-approved timber fencing, security fencing and access control solutions, Jacksons carries out design consultations and site assessments to ensure every school is as secure as it can be. With decades of experience designing, manufacturing and installing security fencing in schools, Jacksons Fencing is the only authority to create this special report. ‘Protecting the Future’ gives advice on how best to retrofit older sites to make them safe for contemporary learning, as well as offering guidance to contractors, developers, architects and specifiers working with schools to provide enhanced perimeter security and access control. Free copy To download your free copy now of ‘Protecting the Future: Jacksons Fencing’s Special Report on School Perimeter Security’ visit: or to speak to a member of the team call: 0800 408 1359. L FURTHER INFORMATION 0800 408 1359




One of the greatest challenges for any education establishment is balancing the need to create an open and stimulating environment that encourages learning, whilst ensuring that people and equipment are protected from security threats

As in any public institution, security should feature as a priority. One of the greatest challenges for any education establishment is balancing the need to create an open and stimulating environment that encourages learning, whilst ensuring that the people and equipment within feel comfortable and are protected from security threats no matter the size of the campus or the number of pupils and staff. All establishments present specific challenges from a security perspective and the educational sector is no different. Examples of security incidents revolve around bullying, petty theft, abuse and vandalism. But sometimes the threats can be more serious – extending to arson, theft, serious incidents involving a weapon, cyber-attacks and criminal damage. The website stresses the importance of having a security policy in schools which complement the safeguarding policies relating to the health, safety and wellbeing of students and staff. A good security policy helps both students and staff to be vigilant about their own and the safety and security of others and demonstrate knowledge of issues which could affect them. These should reflect a realistic assessment of the threats relevant to the school or college and can be drawn on experiences or statistics provided by trusted sources. As the voice of the professional security industry, we encourage and support excellence in the industry and our members demonstrate quality and professionalism.

When approached to write about perimeter security in schools, we thought it best to ask our members who have first-hand experience and chose four key areas: CCTV or video surveillance, perimeter security systems, biometrics and access control.

Written by The British Security Industry Association (BSIA)

School security – going beyond duty of care

educational institutions aren’t getting the most out of their investment. Using CCTV with teachers’ consent could help with staff training, and with identifying and deterring truants. Looking to video analytics could improve on-site safety, by creating better flow systems for fire safety and evacuation procedures, or by identifying large groups and alerting staff to potential safety hazards.”

CCTV “The rise of facial recognition has given CCTV a bad name, but its impact on security and Perimeter Security safety remains second to none. In schools, The first and most important step to this is particularly important – to school security is to conduct a secure the premises and the thorough site security survey, students and staff within CCTV c an believes Ashley Smith from it, and as a deterrent be used to mon Tensor. This security audit for potential criminal itor behavio will highlight any existing activity,” comments Tim ur on a to provid site, vulnerabilities, but also Raynor from Johnson e a dete help determine whether Controls UK&I. against rrent violent a there are any existing “CCTV can be used ttacks and help systems in place that can to monitor behaviour p be taken over in order to on a site, to provide those re rosecute sponsib reduce deployment costs. a deterrent against necessa le if Ashley said: “We also violent attacks and help ry. look at possible integrations prosecute those responsible that would further benefit the if necessary. As schools school. We have platforms which increase the amount of high-value can integrate with existing fire & intruder technology on site, the potential for alarms, as well as bespoke software plugins to theft grows. With school budgets ever under allow schools to easily monitor and manage strain, a CCTV investment is a major deterrent staff & student attendance and access rights. for potential thieves. The same applies for Our security solutions can also streamline vandalism, especially since most schools emergency evacuations by automatically no longer have a caretaker on site 24/7 – a adding on removing them from the fire roll call remote monitoring centre can do the same job. as they arrive or leave the site. We favour an “But the opportunities presented by integrated approach to Perimeter Security. E CCTV go far beyond security – and many Issue 25.1 | EDUCATION BUSINESS MAGAZINE



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 “The next step is for engineers to design and install an Access Control/perimeter security system that delivers on its core features - securing and monitoring entry points, enabling only authorized members of staff to access the premises, protecting staff, pupils and assets, enabling fast and orderly evacuation in an emergency, etc. – while also allowing for efficient school operation.” Biometrics Controlsoft is part of the BSIA’s Access and Asset Protection (AAP) section. The company’s case study with Alsop High School highlights the positive benefits of a biometric security system and a planned security integration policy. Alsop High School Liverpool is one of the largest secondary schools in the region. In 2010 the Building Schools for the Future (BSF) programme provided Alsop with a grant to improve the overall infrastructure. As part of the the BSF programme, business manager Safer Osmani, decided to implement a fingerprint access control system due to students constantly losing or not carrying their access cards with them. He had three main criteria points which needed to be met: size, speed and redundancy. For size, he had to consider if the reader could handle a database of over 1,000 users. For speed, identification had to be fast with a database of over 1,000

users. Consideration also had to be given on where fingerprint templates would be stored so access control decisions could continue if connection to the PC failed. In 2012, this system had ninety doors controlled by fingerprint readers with just over nine hundred staff and students enrolled. By that time the system had been operational throughout the school for two and a half years. Osmani said at the

The first and most important step to school security is to conduct a thorough site security survey. This security audit will highlight any existing vulnerabilities, but also help determine whether there are any existing systems in place that can be taken over in order to reduce deployment costs

time: “I am still impressed with the quick identification speed of the readers and the overall performance of the system. I also get very good support from Controlsoft as and when I need it, which is also very important.” Jonathan Summers from Controlsoft, said: “The fact that the Controlsoft door control units and fingerprint readers are IP-addressable has allowed the installer to use the school’s existing network cabling infrastructure in these large buildings, thereby saving the school money and delivering a “greener” solution.” Access Control Orchard Junior School in Hampshire needed an easy to manage and reliable means of improving school security whilst allowing staff access to the main school entrance. Staff previously used a keypad providing a minimum-security solution for approximately 30 staff members. Changes were sought after due to three reasons: children copying codes, mechanical failure of the buttons and water ingress. NanoQuest from Nortech was fitted by Southampton based security installer, Complete Security, to provide a costeffective means of managing staff access and enhancing security. NanoQuest is Nortech’s standalone proximity based integrated access controller and reader. It was supplied with contactless key fobs to provide a simple effective solution that was well within the school’s budget. The contactless proximity technology used in the unit eliminates wear and tear, and the risks posed by easy–to-copy PIN codes. As the unit combines a proximity reader and controller it can be easily incorporated into an expanded system as funds allow, providing a simple yet effective entry-level solution. For more information on finding quality security companies and case studies on security solutions in schools visit the BSIA website. L FURTHER INFORMATION



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Four ways efficient school management can improve outcomes for pupils Lorraine Smith, divisional managing director at Civica explores how using cloud software to automate your school’s management processes can have a positive impact in the classroom and on pupils’ health and wellbeing In every school, the back office provides the administrative backbone to the teaching and learning experiences of pupils. However, lack of efficient processes can mean that more time and money is spent on financial, HR and catering tasks than should be – resources which could benefit pupils in the classroom instead. Although we may traditionally associate classroom technology with improving outcomes, here are four ways in which better school management can also have an impact. Streamlined financial management processes Having more efficient financial management processes can free up budget and time that can then be spent supporting students. In particular, cloud software can help automate financial administration so that purchasing processes are streamlined, resulting in fewer errors, queries and adjustments, and cost per order is reduced with fewer people involved in the purchasing process. What’s more, future income and expenditure can be more accurately predicted, helping you to allocate budget more effectively, and statutory and legislative reports can be easily completed, saving time that can be diverted elsewhere across the school. An automated financial management process can also benefit multi-academy trusts. As centralised purchasing is easier to manage across multiple sites, schools can benefit from bulk-buying discounts, and finance data from multiple sites can be held in a single database which reduces time spent on re-keying data and improving the reporting process. A more efficient lunchtime service In 2018 the government set a target of halving childhood obesity by 2030. According to NHS data, only 18 per cent of children have the

recommended five or more portions of fruit and vegetables a day, which is something that schools can help to encourage through an effective cloud-based cashless catering system. Reducing the use of cash helps deliver an efficient lunchtime service. This means that pupils are more likely to get served without having to queue, which can help to increase take-up of school meals and give pupils valuable social time. It’s also easier for schools to access data on pupils’ dietary requirements and eating habits, robustly safeguarding those children who have allergies. Parents can have more visibility over what their child has eaten, which can encourage healthy eating conversations at home. Schools can even use data from their own canteens to bring the curriculum to life, helping make health education relevant and relatable. Keep your best teachers Staff retention is an issue faced by all schools. In 2018 the Department for Education revealed that the five-year retention rate for teachers who qualified in 2013 had dropped to 67.7 per cent, compared to 68.5 per cent in the previous year; the fifth consecutive year that the rate has worsened. In addition, research from the Education Policy Institute has found that 70 per cent of school budgets is spent on staff costs, which reduces the amount that can be spent on pupils. Implementing effective HR and payroll cloud-based technology in schools can therefore have several benefits; by taking care of training and performance monitoring, schools can recruit the right people, track their CPD to make sure that development objectives are met and therefore increase job satisfaction and retention. The need for supply teachers can be reduced and existing staff can be upskilled – both of which can improve pupils’ experiences. What’s

more, spotting trends and patterns in staff absences allows for early intervention and can have an impact on both points above. Reduced burden on admin Integrated online payments can help reduce the administrative time spent chasing parental arrears for meals, trips, and uniforms. Sophisticated online systems can now accept payments in multiple ways and set automatic top-up limits so that children don’t run out of funds, resulting in fewer delays and avoiding embarrassment at lunchtimes. Parental communication and engagement can also be improved via the cloud, reducing the amount of visits to the office and allowing staff to focus on the tasks which have more value to pupil outcomes. While Edtech tends to focus on technology which directly enhances teaching, these points are just a few ways in which technology outside the classroom can help schools and trusts support pupils more effectively. Cloud software makes school management processes better, faster, and more innovative – and taking advantage of the cloud now can make it easier and more cost-effective for schools to adopt the latest technology in the future. With innovations in cloud, automation and mobile software happening all the time, it’s easy to see how improved school management can have a positive impact on both the workload of admin employees and the health, wellbeing and educational outcomes of pupils. Automate your school’s management solutions with Civica Civica provides automated school management solutions that can help schools and trusts save time and money, improving outcomes for pupils. To find out how Civica’s cloud software could support your school or trust, contact us, see below. L FURTHER INFORMATION



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Dr Bill Mitchell, director of policy at BCS, has been awarded an OBE in the New Year’s Honours for services to Computing and Artificial Intelligence in Education. Bill talks about the changes to the computing curriculum, what progress has been made, and the launch of the National Centre for Computing Education Tell me about your involvement in reviewing the computing curriculum I joined BCS as director of education in 2009 and was tasked with setting up a BCS Academy of Computing. However, before that got off the ground the issue of ICT in schools became critical. There were concerns that the government believed the whole subject of ICT was redundant and should be removed from the school curriculum, meaning there would be no space on the national curriculum for a computing subject of any kind. At the time, the Department for Education didn’t really know much about BCS, and when I first started with BCS it was a challenge to secure their engagement with our work. However, we persevered, we collaborated with a wide range of stakeholders – and made sure we talked to the government about the key things that mattered at a national level. When we did get to talk to them it was as part of a broad coalition. As part of that coordinated alliance, recommendations were made by lots of different people working together putting across the same key messages to government. Whoever the government talked to – whether it was the Royal Society, Royal Academy of Engineering, BCS, Google, Microsoft, BT or ARM - they all gave them the same message: ’computing is an academic discipline that every child should learn, we can help you solve this.’ BCS was at the heart of that discussion thanks to adopting the Computing At School group, the peer-to-peer support network of computer science teachers, which demonstrated to the Department for Education that we were able to help lead on how to develop a computing curriculum that would be fit for purpose in collaboration with all these organisations, especially working with the Royal Academy of Engineering and the Royal Society. What was the main problem with the ICT curriculum? The ICT curriculum, for both primary and secondary schools, was by 2010 outdated and wasn’t seen as being founded in a subject discipline. It had been designed in the mid-1990s and by 2010 it was no longer really that relevant. A lot of ICT being taught in primary school was then repeated in secondary school, leading to student disengagement. What had been lost was

the idea that computing was a real subject discipline on the same level as maths or physics, history or geography and should be taught that way rather than as a set of lowlevel skills for using software applications. There has been criticism of that approach saying that children in school don’t know how to use ICT – what is your reaction to this? The new statutory computing programme of study still includes those aspects related to learning the skills to use technology purposefully. However, it was put into a broader curriculum that teaches computer science along with information technology and digital literacy, and it should be taught so that each one is given equal merit. What have been the highlights for you over the last ten years? The new computing curriculum coming in was a real highlight (made statutory in 2014). It was fantastic because it bought so many organisations together and showed that there were a lot of people who genuinely cared about computing. The amount of effort that people have put in to get this started has been amazing. Are you pleased with the progress that has been made since the 2017 Royal Society report, ‘After the Reboot’, which found that computer science teaching was inadequate? There’s been huge progress since the review. We’ve now got the National Centre for Computing Education (NCCE) which is going to be an incredible force for good. It will support teachers and help them get the kind of knowledge and skills that they really need. Although the NCCE has been funded reasonably well for a fouryear period, in my view it will need to be funded over at least the next ten-years to really make a systemic change that’s going to last for the next generation.

IT & Computing

Computing on the curriculum

they need. There are currently millions of people in jobs who never had the opportunity to study computing when they were at secondary school. They are at a disadvantage and need help and support in order to get the digital skills to thrive over the next decade. You are now director of policy at BCS and have had successes working with the government and other organisations. Tell me about the AI MSc pipeline. The government asked us to review the current state of AI Masters programmes in UK universities. We examined what might be done to strengthen the number of MSc programmes on offer and to ensure they were going to be aligned with the AI sector deal the government had developed. We were able to show there are a lot of good Master’s degree programmes already in place. We indicated how they could be further developed to meet the needs of the UK over the longer term. One area that really needs fixing is the gender diversity issue. If we want to bring more women into AI – there has to be a lot of innovative thinking and a sustained effort to change the culture in computing departments – so they are truly inclusive and welcoming to women. What is BCS’s role when it comes to advising the government on the ethics surrounding controversial developments, such as the use of AI in facial recognition surveillance? The government needs to look to expert authoritative bodies such as BCS, and others, in understanding the right balance of where regulation helps and how to make it stick. That way it will result in genuine change and encourage corporate behaviour to be truly ethical rather than paying lip service to regulation in order to avoid being sued. It’s that genuine change of culture BCS can help with because we are the professional body for IT. We are not there to represent the vested interests of large companies or to promote specific benefits to individuals in the IT world. We exist to advance computing for the benefit of the public. We have a real insight and expertise that will help improve what technology can do for people which will genuinely improve ethical behaviour. L FURTHER INFORMATION Dr Bill Mitchell, director of policy, BCS

What can we expect in future? We need to make sure the NCCE is sustainable and continues to do its good work. We need to make sure that our education pipeline works right through from primary school to adult education and beyond so the existing and future workforce can get the digital skills



Supporting administration and improving the learning experience

As schools, colleges and universities attempt the tricky balancing act of cutting costs while improving service levels, more and more are discovering the benefits of deploying Fujitsu scanners in the classroom and administrative offices. Enhance collaboration, productivity and GDPR compliance. Fujitsu offers a wide range of scanners, including sheetfed, flatbed and overhead models. Different models are suited to different applications, but all perform the same essential function, the conversion of printed and handwritten information into digital images that can be shared, stored and distributed digitally. Visit to find out more

ScanSnap iX100 ■Battery powered scanner for

scanning in the classroom, office or at home ■Wirelessly scan to a cloud account, smart device,notebook or email address ■Scan small documents such as permission slips or notifications simultaneously ■Choice of paper paths for flexible operation

ScanSnap iX1500 ■Scan everyday documents such

as forms & permission slips up to A4 & even A3 ■Scan colour, double sided & mixed batches of documents ■Simple in its operation, connection via USB to PC or Mac ■Intuitive & automated scanning & seamless distribution to a host of destinations such as email ■Bundled with OCR software for creation of searchable & editable files

ScanSnap SV600 ■Overhead contactless scanning

fi-65F ■Designed for easy & quick

of loose documents up to A3, scanning of small documents bound material & pupil produced up to A6 material such as craft items ■Scan items such as a passport, ID card, driving license or small ■Simple one button approach, slip compatible with both PC & Mac ■Continuous scanning possible ■Scan in colour or black & white, with page turning detection & can be optionally powered by timed scanning USB ■Automated image enhancement ■Small footprint for installation ■Bundled with OCR software for in any environment creation of searchable & editable files

Please scan here for a YouTube hosted video featuring teachers talking about using scanners and the benefits of them in the classroom and for admin

VISIONARY SCHOOL SAVES TIME AND SPACE WITH A DOCUMENT SCANNING SOLUTION When a Telford school needed help streamlining its data collection processes, it turned to a document management expert for guidance


outhall Special School, based in Telford, is a leader in the use of best digital practices in order to offer a more complete learning and working experience and, with a responsibility to keep student data safe, part of the school’s remit is holding hundreds of records upto-date, accurate and secure. In fact, this school has a greater need for this kind of support than most – pupils with special education needs (SEN) have records which need to be safely and securely stored for 25 years. Historically, this has proved a problem for the school in several ways - lack of storage space, access and retrieval issues as well as General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) compliance. Fujitsu scanners – in conjunction with software from partner Filestar – have solved all of these problems thanks to MCL, a Kyocera Group Company.

THE PROBLEM One serious issue was that the filing cabinets at Southall School were filling up with pupil records, taking up valuable space; this also made document retrieval difficult and time-consuming, whilst being at risk from theft, fire and flooding. Jonathan Barrett, IT manager and part of the school’s senior management team, knew there had to be a better solution, and thought that digital scanning might hold the answer. Jonathan contacted Ryan Perkins at MCL to get his expert help and advice; Filestar was recommended,

as it offers a cloud-based document management software solution which has comprehensive auditing facilities and flexible retention policies.

the typed text is converted into digital, searchable text, and the document is automatically filed in the correct folder in the cloud.



This sounded like a great fit for the school’s paper document problems and, for the capture and scanning of pupil records, the Fujitsu fi-7300NX scanner was suggested as the ideal companion to the school’s software. The stand-alone scanner solution selected by Southall School can cope with a wide variety of documents which can be seamlessly processed to a range of destinations and systems via the in-built touchscreen and intuitive software. With the scanning part of the problem solved, various parties worked together to customise the Filestar software to precisely meet the needs of the school. Filestar works like a virtual filing cabinet and, with just one button-press of the Fujitsu scanner, pupil records are scanned,

Having these documents kept securely in the cloud offers many advantages. Firstly, the school no longer needs to hold a paper copy, saving filing space and eliminating the risk of damage and theft. Secondly, the documents can only be accessed by the correct personnel with the right permissions and, every time the documents are accessed, there is a full audit trail of who has read what, and what they’ve done with the document. Finally, the searching and retrieval of documents can be done instantly, enabling compliance with GDPR and saving time and administration resources. Jonathan and the school have been thrilled with the solution; they say that the Fujitsu fi-7300NX is ‘absolutely amazing.’ The scanner is very portable, and has moved around the school as pupil records have been scanned and indexed. This has given the school staff some much needed extra room in the offices and ensured a safe and secure procedure for storing precious records for many years to come.

For more information on how Fujitsu scanners can benefit your school, visit: scanners-in-education

Bett 2020 Review

Talking EdTech at Bett Science Minister Chris Skidmore spoke at the BETT Show, reiterating the government’s commitment to education technology and working with industry to create solutions that address some of the challenges in education Bett took place on 22-25 January at London Excel and welcomed the global education community to celebrate, find inspiration and discuss the future of education, as well as see how technology and innovation enables educators and learners to thrive. Science Minister Chris Skidmore spoke at the BETT Show, reiterating the government’s commitment to education technology and working with industry to create solutions that address some of the challenges in education. Skidmore said: “The vision and indeed the mandate of the EdTech Strategy is as important today as it was a year ago, and our main aims remain the same: to support better use of technology where it helps teachers, school leaders and pupils, and to make sure that technology helps lift the administrative burden on our teachers, vitally not to add to it.” He reiterated the commitment to connect more schools to full-fibre internet connectivity and said they are working with local authorities, trusts and schools to fund the installation of new full-fibre internet connections in approximately 1,700 schools across the UK, hundreds of which are to some of the most difficult to reach, rural parts of the nation. Skidmore also announced the funding of trials of ground-breaking assistive technology for pupils with special educational needs and disabilities in up to 100 schools and colleges. The minister said: “Harnessing the power of modern technology can help us change lives and unlock the potential of every child. “With technological advances happening at increasingly breakneck speed, it is only right that we ride the wave so pupils in our classrooms with special educational needs are given all the support they need.” The trials of this cutting-edge technology will be funded by an initial investment of £300,000, as part of a wider investment of £10 million through the DfE’s EdTech Strategy. The Rt Honourable Graham Stuart MP, Parliament Under Secretary of State (Minister for Investment) Department for International Trade UK gave his Foreign Direct Investment Statement. In it he spoke of the DfE’s plans to invest £10million in the UK’s EdTech strategy. He spoke of his personal passion for education and how his department is proud to support education through trade. The study of the universe Professor Brian Cox, OBE, arguably the UK’s best known experimental physicist, began his talk by highlighting the importance of the study of cosmology, its impact on the universe and our position in the cosmos. He also discussed the structure of space and time, the ‘fabric’ of the universe and how


Einstein’s theory of relativity is still proving relevant to cosmology today. Professor Cox went on to talk about revolutionary technology and how this has helped to further our gaze deeper than ever into the beginning of time, including telescopes that are now able to take photos of blackholes that are billions of light years away. He also described how digital sky surveys have allowed scientists to map the locations of stars and galaxies to form a 3D map of the universe, and spoke of the ability of the stars to map events throughout time. Special educational needs The second day at Bett 2020 was off to an incredible start with the insightful Made by Dyslexia panel, discussing how best to integrate dyslexic learning in the classroom and workplace. The main notion of the talk was to remove stigmatic thinking and instead view dyslexia as a superpower, a neurodiverse talent that should be recognised and nurtured. Speakers on the panel included the Director General Strategy of GCHQ, who encouraged educators to remove societal barriers to allow dyslexic talent to develop. The Headmaster of Millfield School shared his views on the limitations of standardized testing and the need for educators to be trained in identifying dyslexic traits. The Microsoft Training Platform offers free dyslexic training for all teachers and marks the beginning of how technology can be combined with education to help support different children, each with uniquely individual talents. The Global Head of Human Resources at HSBC focused on the capabilities of dyslexic thinkers, who excel in creativity, problem solving, resilience and empathy. The panel was also joined by a Space Scientist, who shared her experience of being undiagnosed with dyslexia and how she was able to learn new skills and unlock her full potential by focusing on her creative and original thinking. The AI revolution Ready for the AI revolution? Esben Staerk, President of LEGO Education, took to the Bett Arena to talk about why confidence in STEAM learning is key to career opportunities in the age of automation. Whilst Lego Education are celebrating their 40 year anniversary, Esben talked about looking ahead to the next 40 years and the implications of the automation revolution on jobs. He said there will be a major shift in job categories and a need to build ‘life-long learners’ on a global scale who will have the confidence to adapt and continue to learn new technological skills. He emphasised the power of learning through play, and the importance of making learning a hands-on, joyful and

engaging experience, that will nurture curiosity and stimulate creativity to build confidence. He summarised by saying that the notion you go to college or university for four years or so to learn new skills is over - in today’s world, if you want to be a life-long employee, you will have to be a life-long learner. Trends for 2020 Laura McInerney, co-founder of app Teacher Tapp, talked about the key trends to watch out for in 2020. She highlighted that recruitment will be a key issue due to the focus on the gender pay gap deepening and a shortage of 19 year olds who are soon starting to enter the job market (thanks to a somewhat fallow year in reproduction in 2000). Behavioural management and workload will also be a focus, with the vast majority of teachers saying they would prefer to work at a school that had longer working hours but good behaviour in class. Dr Ger Graus OBE, Global Director of Education at Kidzania, spoke passionately about social mobility, highlighting the fact that children can only aspire to what they know exists and our duty to widen horizons. He talked about the role the environment plays in education and the need for the world of work to teach children about the possibilities and opportunities available to them. It’s crucial that adults incentivise curiosity, allowing children to write their own narrative of the possible. A platform for start-ups The Bett Futures Takeover Shark Tank Panel challenged seven start-up companies to pitch their ideas to the prestigious panel. Presiding over the panel was the Former Minister for Schools for the United Kingdom RT Hon Jim Knight, Emerge Education’s Partner Nic Newman, Edulab’s Executive Vice President Norihisa Wada and MindCET EdTech’s Founder and CEO Avi Warshavsky. The panel was off to a fiery start, each candidate was given two minutes to pitch their start-up company and a further three minutes to answer the complex questions thrown at them by the panel. Beginning the panel was Edves, a Nigerian based EdTech company that focuses on automating school processes for teachers, parents and students. They were followed by Sportip in Japan, who aim to use AI to provide sports fitness, rehabilitation and coaching through AI programming and tailor online exercise regimes specific to promote health and prevent injuries. Hong Kong based company MagiCube was next, a cloud-based collaborative programme whose goal is to carry out STEM education in the most economically convenient way. Israel’s company Speak had identified a niche


The world of work Broadcaster and author, Helen Skelton, hosted a debate in the Bett Arena looking at whether the education system is adequately preparing pupils for the job market of the future? Panelist, Richard Henderson, Director of Global Education Solutions, Lenovo, said, “Smart connected devices are changing our

lives. They are in our homes and workplaces and are leading to a digital transformation in schools. Today’s students need to prepare for jobs that don’t even exist yet; a whole host of new technological jobs.” Dan Hawes, Marketing Director, Graduate Recruitment Bureau, said: “The demand for STEM graduates is higher than the supply. The pace of technological development is now so fast, that training for the jobs we need no longer end in a degree or university education, students today will need to continue to build their skills over their lifetimes. The panellists also highlighted the need for data that can demonstrate measurable results, encouraging schools to invest in new technologies, and encourage teachers to try out new technologies in their classrooms. The Future of Learning The visionary Professor of Educational Technology headed Friday afternoon’s keynote lineup. To a packed auditorium, he introduced his thinking around ‘The School in the Cloud’. The approach is a combination of two tested practices: First, ‘The Granny Cloud’ – where volunteer educators connect with children around the world to give them opportunities to experience worlds far removed from their own as well as encouragement and admiration that is proven to help them thrive, and secondly, self-learning environments, where by using the internet students are able to find answers self-sufficiently. What they found was that schools in the cloud improve comprehension (in general, not

just literacy), communication (the ability to demonstrate that you have comprehended) and computing (ability to solve a problem using the internet) in children. Mitra’s most striking remarks drew a sharp focus on the current schooling system, the curriculum and in particular, the way that student’s knowledge and understanding is assessed - something he argued was firmly rooted in the past. He suggested that the use of internet and collaboration simply must be allowed during assessment and posed the question: ‘If we are using it 24/7, why is it that your child should not be able to just that too?’ Summarised as a ‘senseless and obsolete’ system that we don’t need any more, Mitra instead proposed a future curriculum structured around the questions that we don’t know the answers to in order to foster the ability in children to solve problems ‘just in time’ i.e. to find accurate and current answers to questions. His parting thoughts on the future of learning drew us to encourage greater emphasis on fantasy rather than limited methods of looking at the future that are currently used in schools. His parting pearls of wisdom called on schools to ‘focus on the future as much as they do on the past’ saying it would be ‘unthinkable for children to enter a future which they couldn’t possibly have imagined’. L

Bett 2020 Review

gap in the EdTech market and developed a platform that measured and assessed the quality and ability to speak a language in only seven minutes. Smile + Learn, a Spanish based company, designed a 360 degree adaptive platform that specialised in Content Language Integrated Learning and reinforces key curriculum subjects such as Maths, Science and Robotics. ImBLaze, a powerful platform that enables students to find internships that interests them in the US, highlighted the importance of nurturing students who are beginning to make their way into the workplace. In contrast, Austria’s Robo Wunderkinds target audience was nursery and kindergarten. They give children the opportunity to experiment in the field of robotics using kid-friendly building blocks that encourage them to explore their creative capabilities. The Shark Tank Panel was an incredible success, drawing a large crowd of spectators who each had their favourite company of the event, but there could only be one winner. After some deliberation, the panel was unanimous in their decision in choosing Israel’s Speak start-up company as the winner.

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Preferred Recycling Partner

Who Are Recycle your Tec? Founded in the summer of 2018, our mission has been to provide businesses, schools & charities with a FREE recycling service, no matter the size of the organisation or the e-waste load. Our main aim is to provide the most money possible to out clients with no hidden charges whilst maintaining the hightest standards of WEEE Recycling and Data Erasure in accordance with the WEEE Directive. Most of our clients are companies however we have found that schools require our help more than ever. They have tighht budgets and in most cases are being charged by other recyclers due to the items holding very little value. We offer all schools a free service and, in most cases, provide them money. This allows the school to allocate their budget to the children in more ways and will have positive implications on the taxpayer.

We work closely with several charities and when recycling with us you have the option to donate any kickback money to any chosen charity.

Managing Director with the Chairman of the Royal British Legion

Testimonials “Great company to work with. Quick, efficient and very professional.” Michael Vaughan, Head of IT at Unity Schools Partnership (Representing 20+ Schools) “Excellent company, dealt with our older IT equipment really quickly, efficiently & professionally. Not only did they provide a quality service, but they saved the Hospice money for disposal of equipment no longer required. Highly recommended.” Eden Valley Hospice & Jigsaw


Having worked in confidential shredding and data destruction for over 25 years and having also been involved with the British Security Industry Association (BSIA) for 18 of these, I understand how important it is to look after data, both on an individual level and as a business or organisation. Security breaches, fraud and identity theft do not discriminate and can affect anyone, so it is vital to put the right precautions in place to prevent them, and this is no more relevant than in the education sector. As a parent of four, I understand that, for parents, the safety of your children is your number one priority. When they go to school, or on to higher education, you put your faith in those institutions to protect your children and keep them safe. For schools, colleges and universities, this is an enormous responsibility, but one that is absolutely paramount. Yet, this is a difficult task. Over the last few decades, we’ve entered a new digital age, with constant technological developments and, with that, we have a whole online world to explore, as well as endless gadgets to play with and work on. But, by doing so, we’re also creating more routes and opportunities for our data to be compromised – and our children’s too. This is something ICO’s UK Information Commissioner, Elizabeth Denham CBE, talked about only last week, when she announced a new code of practice for online services to help create a safer digital space for children to “learn, explore and play”. She said it’s not about “seeking to protect children from the digital world, but by protecting them within it”. Data in schools As one of the main places children and young people spend their days, educational institutions are right at the centre of this. They hold a plethora of confidential information on students, from exam papers, reports and classroom photos to financial details, national insurance numbers and safeguarding assessments. And the same goes for staff and parents’ details. So, in this age, how do educational institutions successfully protect the information they have on themselves, their staff, parents and students? Security Measures To reduce risks and keep data as secure as possible, schools, colleges and universities must have appropriate security measures

in place. Not doing so will make this data extremely vulnerable, increasing the likelihood of security breaches, hefty fines and potential harm. So, these institutions should install a firewall and virus checker on all computers and password protect all data, where possible. They should encrypt all electronic personal information and disable any autocomplete settings. They should also keep devices and hardcopy data under lock and key when not in use, check storage systems are secure, limit access to data, and shred all confidential documents and destroy electronic data carriers. Within the education sector, everyone who deals with personal data, even students, has a responsibility to handle that data carefully and prevent it from getting into the wrong hands. But, by law, schools, colleges and universities must also have a designated Data Protection Officer (DPO), who is educated on data protection and responsible for establishing and upholding systems and policies related to this.

WEEE Directive Recycling of WEEE (Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment) is a specialist part of the waste and recycling industry and addresses environmental and social problems that have resulted from sending products to landfill. It is a rapidly growing sub-sector due largely to the implementation of the original WEEE Directive in the UK by the WEEE Regulations 2006, following this came associated requirements for the recovery, reuse, recycling and treatment of WEEE. The Waste Electric and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Regulations 2013 became law in the UK on 1 January 2014 and replaced the 2006 Regulations. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) estimates that every Holding and updating data year an estimated 2 million While an educational institution tonnes of WEEE items holds data about a person, The HS are discarded by for as long as it’s being estimat E householders and used, it needs to remain companies in the UK. accurate. To ensure this is every y es that ear, two This includes most the case, schools, colleges m illion to products that have and universities should a plug or need a carry out information WEEE i nnes of t e m battery. Ten broad audits at least annually. s are disc categories of WEEE This includes writing a arded in the U are currently outlined letter to children’s parents K within the Regulations, or college/university but a main one concerning students at the start of each data handling is IT and academic year to check their telecommunications equipment details are correct and amending – e.g. personal computers, copying information as soon it needs doing so. equipment, telephones and pocket calculators. Schools should also follow a records Educational institutions should choose disposal schedule, hold data accordingly, and information destruction companies which securely destroy any personal data that can provide safe, secure and environmentally is out of date or no longer needed. friendly recycling to their clients and provide It is a violation of data protection evidence of being able to do so. The dangers legislation to keep data for longer than it of not using a qualified company may include is needed. Because of this, all businesses failing to delete data properly, resulting in and organisations need to think about, enormous fines for breaching GDPR. L and be able to justify, how long they keep personal data. Once no longer needed, this data must be securely destroyed. Failure FURTHER INFORMATION to do so can result in warnings, financial penalties and reputational damage.


Written by Don Robins, BSIA Information Destruction Section Chairman

From exam papers, reports and classroom photos to financial details, national insurance numbers and safeguarding assessments, schools hold a vast amount of student data. So how do they successfully protect such information? Don Robins, BSIA Information Destruction Section Chairman, shares some advice

Data Destruction

Be aware of the data you hold

Data destruction For schools, colleges and universities, as with all businesses and organisations, it is essential to find an accredited data destruction company to destroy confidential information once it’s no longer needed or out of date. A company with the right accreditations will provide a secure, compliant service and a Certificate of Destruction upon completion. By choosing wisely, educational institutions will remain compliant with the law and avoid hefty fines. They will also protect themselves, staff, parents and students against identity theft, fraud and any other potential harm. An accredited data destruction company will also provide secure storage options for confidential waste, as well as solutions for a variety of different materials. Members of the BSIA Information Destruction should operate to specific standards; EN 15713 (secure destruction of confidential material – code of practice), be ISO 90001 accredited, and ensure that individuals who come into contact with confidential information are screened to BS 7858.


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Helping you tackle the DfE’s standard chart of accounts Financial managers will be anxiously aware of the DfE’s move towards implementing a standard chart of accounts. Key to the Better Financial Reporting programme, Stuart Wild from software company Hoge 100 explains the challenges it presents and how they are working with the DfE to help their customers I want to help you benefit from the Better Financial Reporting programme. To that end, I’ll explain what it means for your software. I’ll also explain how we’re working with the DfE to help our Dimensions for Academies customers embrace the standard chart of accounts – without compromising their internal accounting needs. Better Financial Reporting explained The DfE launched the Better Financial Reporting programme in May 2019. Looking to improve the burden of financial reporting for academy trusts, it introduced a standard chart of accounts. With hundreds of new six‑digit codes, the aim is standardised reporting. Consolidating data in so many formats has been a constant challenge for the DfE. Furthermore, trusts have battled with differing sets of codes, labouring for (too many) hours trying to manually deliver what the DfE wants. Neither party welcomed the annual task. The new chart of accounts will ultimately make reporting more streamlined, reduce academy trust workload, and provide more meaningful financial insights. But in the short-term, many finance departments fear a big headache. The DfE is encouraging trusts to adopt the standard chart of accounts within their finance systems. But some software vendors cannot accommodate a six-digit code; they have to create a workaround or re-write. And some academies would never use many of the new codes. The DfE and academies can differ on their reporting focus too. For example, the

DfE requires a single figure for educational supplies. But some academies might want to break this down by type, at the very least. The first voluntary submissions using the new chart of accounts are imminent. Yet, many trusts still feel confused on the best route forward. Should they try and incorporate the new codes, or is there another way? That’s why we’ve built flexibility for Dimensions for Academies users. Working with the DfE to give you an easier transition As a specialist finance software provider for trusts, we’ve worked closely with the DfE on this project. Involving a small group using our Dimensions for Academies software, we’ve built intuitive tools to provide an easier transition and faster submissions for our customers. Firstly, I’ll dispel a myth. Whilst you can incorporate the standard chart of accounts into your finance system, you don’t have to. It’s only a recommendation and there is another way that the DfE is perfectly happy with. If you run Dimensions for Academies, you have a choice. If a Dimensions user wants to incorporate the DfE codes into their software, they can do that. With a character limit of 25, it’s possible to do so quite easily. Alternatively, using our Excel Integration, our customers can create a one-time mapping for their own financial codes to the standard chart of accounts codes. This can be completed by finance teams or auditors. Linking Dimensions for Academies to Microsoft Excel, we export your current codes into Excel, ready to map against the new DfE

codes. Once complete, we insert the mapping back into Dimensions for Academies. When a trial balance is required for the DfE, your codes will automatically map to the assigned DfE codes in an instant. Meanwhile, you’ll continue working with your own codes in-house. And you’ll avoid the end-of-year DfE reporting headache that consumes so much time. Better still, this automation eliminates errors due to manual entry. Using the DfE API for fast submissions Our work with the DfE doesn’t stop there. We’ve written software that uploads your data to the DfE API. Using our Finance Portal, you’ll submit your data, auto-filling about 65% of the AAR form. This data can then be downloaded for completion. When you’re ready, you’ll submit your full return. Should subsequent changes be necessary, that’s no problem. You’ll just need to re-submit your data to overlay the existing figures. The key point is this: you’ll save an incredible amount of work and prevent human error by using this automated API. Our work with the DfE will ultimately enable automatic submission of the Budget Forecast Return (BFR), the Budget Forecast Return Outturn (BFRO), and the Counterparty Report too. Want to learn more? A provider of professional finance systems with bespoke functionality for academies, our software does exactly what you need it to do; quickly and intuitively. We also have a reputation for excellent personal support, provided exactly when you need it. If you’d like to learn more about Dimensions for Academies, please get in touch to arrange a demonstration (phone us or visit our website.) L FURTHER INFORMATION 01905 947257



Schools financial benchmarking The Department for Education has published an improved schools financial benchmarking service to allow schools to view their financial data, see how it compares with others, and use the information to establish relationships with other schools The Department for Education’s benchmarking service enables local authority-maintained schools and academies to view their financial data, see how it compares with others and use the information to establish relationships with other schools or multi-academy trusts. Data can be compared with schools that share similar characteristics such as pupil numbers, school phase/type, or proportion of pupils with special educational needs; eligible for free school meals; and English as an additional language. The benchmarking service helps school leaders and governors consider how they can use available resources to have maximum impact in supporting high-quality teaching and ensuring the best possible educational outcomes for their pupils. The site reports information at multi-academy trust (MAT) level as well as at individual school level. Users can search using a MAT name and see both the total spending in various categories as well as all of the individual schools. What’s changed? The updated version the Schools Financial Benchmarking service includes improvements to trust searches to allow users to identify trusts operating in a given location. It includes a new “comparison schools” tab in the benchmark charts area to help users see more contextual information about their comparator schools. Improvements to benchmark basket functionality have been added as well as a variety of visual improvements for mobile and tablet users. The service has also been updated with the inclusion of a direct download file for 2017/18 academy finance data available in the data sources page. What’s more, bugs have been fixed and the service has been fine-tuned to improve the overall user experience. The DfE will continue to develop and improve the service based on users’ feedback, You can comment on any changes in your experience by emailing school.

You can also use this email address to join a group of user experience testers and help the DfE shape new features and the development of the service. Why benchmark Benchmarking helps schools plan for school budgets in four main cost areas: staff; premises (for example, building maintenance); occupation (the cost of occupying the school building, for example, energy and water); and supplies and services (for example, stationery, books and examination fees). Benchmarking helps schools look at spend in these areas overall, as well as sub-categories of spend, and compare spend with other similar schools (or academy trusts) and inform your school development process. Benchmarking also helps schools to consider how to use their resources to support highquality teaching, as well as connect with other schools or trusts to discuss challenges and successes. This can help them consider whether their resource allocations are working or things could be done differently. The DfE does warn however that benchmarking is only a guide. Some schools or trusts may find themselves at the lower or upper extremes of the data and should consider other things they know about their school when assessing the data. Staff data It is important that schools review their staff structures regularly as part of their annual school improvement, curriculum and financial planning. This is because staffing typically represents between 75 per cent and 80 per cent of mainstream schools’ expenditure, and more for special schools and pupil referral units (PRUs). When interrogating other schools’ finances to compare with your own, it’s important to look at the education delivery model as a whole. The data that sits within the workforce tab on the benchmark charts page will help with this. It is also useful to have discussions with professionals in other schools in your


benchmark set to gain greater insight into the reasons they operate in the way they do and evaluate the suitability of alternative education delivery models to your own situation. Premises costs Premises costs can be one of the most expensive groups in the costing structure. This cost grouping includes premises staff, cleaning, caretaking, maintenance and improvement, and private finance initiative (PFI) charges. It is useful to look at the premises total expenditure as a percentage of total cost in the first instance and consider whether this is significantly higher or lower than others. This can sometimes be explained by the amount of income generated through the hire of the school’s facilities. Some components in the premises costs block need to be looked at together. For example, if you have directly employed premises staff members, they often undertake basic maintenance and improvement tasks and this usually brings economies to schools. When comparing maintenance and improvement costs with other schools, it is also wise to look at premises staff costs at the same time. Occupation cost The DfE recommends a school looks at occupation costs as a percentage of the total expenditure. However, it can also be useful to look at some of these costs related to per pupil. Water and sewerage costs are worth investigating on a per pupil basis as the cost driver here is people. Energy costs are more complex. You have to heat the whole school and keep all the infrastructure ticking over all of the time. So an initial view of energy costs on a percentage of the total expenditure is a good starting point. However, if you also look at this cost element on a per pupil basis, it will challenge you as to whether you have the most energy efficient approaches that you could possibly have. It may also challenge you to consider whether you have made the best use of framework agreements to obtain maximum efficiencies from the costs you incur. Investment in energy saving improvements can often find medium to long term savings. The government supports an Energy Efficiency Loan Scheme, run by Salix Finance, to help schools meet energy efficiency investment costs. Resources Learning resources are the very essence of a school’s business. You should evaluate how much of your total expenditure you are devoting to this important cost group. It is also useful to look at this on a per pupil basis and challenge yourself on whether you are spending enough on high quality learning resources. This is another example where benchmarking may challenge you to rebalance the allocations of finance within your expenditure structures, given that spending power is finite. L FURTHER INFORMATION schools-financial-benchmarking.



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Make lessons in hand hygiene part of the day Encouraging healthy hand hygiene behaviour should play a constant role in the curriculum. Chris Wakefield, vice president, European marketing & product development at GOJO Industries-Europe Ltd, explains why Hand hygiene is a hugely important practice, which benefits our wider health and well‑being. Its significance is commonly recognised in healthcare settings, however when it comes to other environments, people may not always be quite so diligent. In fact, research shows that 25 per cent of people don’t wash their hands after using the washroom, while a further 46 per cent don’t wash for long enough to be effective. Another poll, by the Royal Pharmaceutical Society (RPS) puts this figure at an alarming 84 per cent. Encouraging and maintaining good hand hygiene has never been more important for schools, colleges, universities or other education facilities. Certain illnesses, such as coughs, colds, and flu, are highly contagious and can spread like wildfire throughout these settings. The spread of such infections can have far‑reaching consequences, causing distress and discomfort for the individual pupils and staff affected, and days off sick whilst they recover. In some areas of England and Northern Ireland this winter, numerous schools have even been forced to shut due to outbreaks of the highly contagious norovirus (also known as the winter vomiting bug). According to the Department of Education, the total number of days missed due to overall absence in 2016/17 was 56.7million. Of this, illness was the main driver, accounting for 55.3 per cent. It is not surprising that viruses are able to spread in education establishments so easily. Germs thrive in closed environments where people come into constant contact with each other. Schools, where children frequently play and work together closely, are a haven for them. Furthermore, younger pupils have immature immune systems and often have a poor understanding of healthy hygiene practices. Infections can be easily transmitted via hands and surfaces such as desks, pencils, and other equipment. One study has shown that fourteen people can be contaminated by touching the same object one after the other. When you put these facts together it is clear to see that the chain of infection needs to be stopped. Hundreds of studies have proven that hand hygiene does just that. Therefore it can play a huge role in promoting health and wellness across education establishments. Enhanced well-being is just one of the many benefits that better hand hygiene brings. Measures to help reduce the risk of virus


outbreaks mean less disruption to lesson plans and exam timetables. One study demonstrated a 50 per cent reduction in absenteeism within primary schools after a comprehensive hand hygiene programme was implemented. Better health can contribute to improved academic success. After all, less absenteeism (both student and staff) means increased chances for learning and development; meaning higher marks and exam grades are more likely. This, in turn, leads to more favourable Ofsted reports and higher rankings in school ‘league tables’. It also makes for happier parents and guardians, who may otherwise have to take time off work to care for their unwell children. Importance and effectiveness of washing hands At GOJO, we are firm advocates for making hand hygiene second nature to everyone, and believe this should be actively taught and encouraged within the school curriculum. Students of all ages must be taught not only its importance, but how and when to wash or sanitise their hands effectively. It makes a perfect subject to tackle as part of PSHE (personal, social, health and economic) lessons. For children up to the age of 12, GOJO offers an array of supporting

educational materials. These include posters, colouring sheets, activity sheets, crosswords, word‑searches, and finger puppets – all available to download for free at As well as teaching about its importance, it is equally key that schools, colleges and universities have an effective hand hygiene system in place. Handwashing facilities must be accessible and dispensers simple to operate. For facilities that younger children use, these should be situated at a lower height, to enable them to reach easily. The formulations are also crucial – due to children’s delicate skin, they must be gentle yet effective against germs. Eye-catching posters can also be very effective as a prompt, reminding students when and how to wash or sanitise their hands. Having an effective hand hygiene system is a vital weapon in the fight against germs. By teaching hygienic behaviour, and equipping facilities with the best hand hygiene solutions, educational establishments can not only help improve the well-being of its pupils, students and staff, but also reduce absenteeism and improve learning outcomes. L FURTHER INFORMATION call +44(0)1908 588444, email infouk@ or visit

Charity CPL Group shares its ethos of giving back to education and highlights future funding and support opportunities available CPL Group is a not-for-profit charity owned by the education sector that comprises Crescent Purchasing Consortium (CPC) and Tenet Education Services. Working in partnership with our suppliers provides us with the wonderful opportunity to give back to the sector. Both organisations operate solely within the education sector providing a range of framework deals and additional procurement services including onsite placements and procurement support for educational organisations. Previously the Group has written procurement support focused pieces but this article has been designed to provide you with an insight into the Group’s ethos of giving back to education through the work that it undertakes within the sector. It also highlights future funding and support opportunities for your organisation. CPL Group’s aim is to support the improvement of value for money obtained by schools, academies, trusts, further education colleges and universities. We fully understand the financial pressures that the whole of the education sector is currently facing with the majority of our senior management team having worked directly in educational institutions, delivering on the front line and experiencing firsthand the daily financial pressures affecting education. This experience coupled with the determination to make a difference across the sector is what drives the team to ensure that all our services are specifically designed for educational organisations to maximise value throughout the procurement cycle. We have achieved year-on-year growth which is enabling us to give back to the education sector, especially in projects over the last three years.

Providing learning & other funding During 2018-19, the CPL Group Board approved £500k of funds to support educational organisations. This underpinned several projects including the setting up of a fund allowing educational organisations to bid for grant funding. Another project was the development of a new E-Learning portal to provide free of charge access to training when the service launches in March 2020. It also enabled the provision of discounted fees when utilising the services of Tenet Education Services to undertake procurement activity. It also allowed for the provision of free to attend procurement conferences such as ProcureEd. The next conference will be taking place in May 2020. Funding student enrichment The single biggest funding allocation was made to the grant funding project with £375k being approved. Qualifying organisations were invited to bid for funding of between £100 and £20,000 demonstrating that their project was sustainable and would enhance the lives of their students. CPL Group supported bids from 33 organisations, successful projects included: £20,000 for the provision of sports equipment to enhance fitness amongst students, £10,750 into the provision of mental health support for students in conjunction with Barnardo’s and £7,500 for the provision of a wildlife pond and garden at an inner-city academy. Further projects included £4,000 for the provision of tents and equipment to support students undertaking the Duke of Edinburgh award, £1,000 for the provision of library books for disadvantaged students and £890

Procurement apprentices During 2017-18 the CPL Group Board approved £300k of funding to support 15 procurement apprentices working in educational organisations. This support covered all salary costs for an 18 month period and allowed the 15 successful institutions to provide their apprentices with employment as well as a qualification in business administration during the term of their apprenticeship. Jordan Robbins, who undertook his apprenticeship at Blackpool 6th Form College said: “The whole experience has been fantastic, there has always been opportunities to grow and develop and the most important thing for me is that I felt supported. I just wanted to take the opportunity to say a big thank you to CPL Group and the college because obviously the support I’ve received has been second to none. I just think that I’ve learnt so much over the past 18 months and the opportunity has allowed me to grow hugely both personally and professionally, I think that’s something in the future that I always will be grateful for.”

Written by CPL Group

Funding available for educational organisations

went towards a theatre company visit to assist students with reading and storytelling. £20,000 also went to Carr Hill High School near Preston for the provision of Chrome Books to assist with curriculum delivery. School Business Manager, Mrs Childs said: “The funding we have been awarded is going to play a huge part in the future of technology based learning at Carr Hill not only for students here today but those joining us in the future. We are thrilled to have received this funding and to have the chance to give our students access to so many enhanced learning opportunities as a result of it.” CPL Group are delighted to have been able to support organisations through multiple projects and will continue to re-invest significant funding within education in line with the charitable objectives of the Group.


CPC Head of Procurement, Pat Condon, presenting Carr Hill High School with their funding.

New opportunities for funding The CPL Board approved an additional £500k for reinvestment back into the sector in November 2019. The next round of funding applications will commence in February 2020 when qualifying educational organisations which are registered as CPC members will be able to submit their bids in support of projects that will enhance the lives and learning opportunities for students across the UK. The CPL Group is committed to making a difference to the lives of all students and through the support of its members looks forward to being able to reciprocate that support back to the education sector in the future. Managing Director Peter Brewer said: “CPL Group is focused on making a difference in education. We want our members to have the best possible experience when dealing with the CPL Team and through member support and the support of our suppliers we are able to give back to education through the use of our surpluses. We look forward to seeing the exciting opportunities that this brings for our members and their students as we continue to work together in the future.” L FURTHER INFORMATION



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18/12/2019 11:50

School Trips

A trip immersed in nature School trips, especially ones that allow pupils to connect with nature, can have a positive impact on a child’s wellbeing, as well as boost relationships with classmates and teachers A study by the Wildlife Trust has shown that children’s wellbeing increases after they spend time connecting with nature. The Nature Nurtures Children study was undertaken by the Institute of Education at UCL and focused on how Wildlife Trust activities effected children’s wellbeing. It focused on over 450 primary school children. Ninety per cent of children felt they learned something new about the natural world and 79 per cent felt that their experience could help their school work. After their activities 84 per cent of children felt that they were capable of doing new things when they tried, and 79 per cent felt more confident in themselves. Eighty-one per cent agreed that they had better relationships with their teachers, and 79 per cent reported better relationships with their class-mates. Nigel Doar, The Wildlife Trusts’ director of strategy says: “This research shows that children experience profound and diverse benefits through regular contact with nature. Contact with the wild improves children’s wellbeing, motivation and confidence. The data also highlights how children’s experiences in and around the natural world led to better relationships with their teachers and class-mates. “The Wildlife Trusts believe everyone should have the opportunity to experience the joy of wildlife in daily life and we’re calling on government to recognise the multiple benefits of nature for children – and ensure that at least one hour per school day is spent outdoors learning and playing in wild places.” Professor Michael Reiss, Institute of Education, UCL, said: “Each generation seems to have less contact with the outdoors than the preceding one. We owe it to all young people to reverse this trend – for their sakes, for our sakes and for nature’s sake. The UCL research team studied children

participating in outdoor activities with mental wellbeing. Every child should have their local Wildlife Trust, ranging from a the opportunity to learn outside at school. single activity, to a series of activities over the course of several weeks. 451 children Spending time outdoors (mostly 8-9 years of age) in 12 areas across The Wildlife Trust’s 30 Days Wild initiative England took part by completing surveys takes part each June and challenges before and after they participated in outdoor everyone to do something with nature activities. Additionally, teachers, Wildlife and wildlife every day of the month. Trust educators and 199 of the children were The impact of taking part in 30 Days Wild has also observed by the UCL research team been tracked by academics at the University and interviewed about their experiences. of Derby. Their study found that people who The outdoor activities involved children did something ‘wild’ each day for a learning about nature, such as month, felt happier, healthier and identifying plants and trees, more connected to nature, After reflecting on their important with added benefits for role in our lives and the natural world too. spendin g considering the needs Miles Richardson time co n of wildlife habitats. from the University n e c t i ng with na The nature connection of Derby said; “Our per cen ture, 81 of the children was research looked at also measured. Nature the impact of 30 that the t agreed y connection refers to Days Wild on 1,000 h a d b relation the level at which a people, two months ships wetter person considers nature after completing ith their te achers to be a part of their the challenge. All identity, reflecting their those taking part emotional closeness to the benefitted, feeling 30 natural world. Nature connection per cent healthier than when essentially includes a love of nature and they started on average. People who care and concern for the environment. reported a disconnect from nature and The Wildlife Trust is urging politicians and who spend less time outdoors, showed other public policy-makers (local and national) the greatest improvement in happiness to change government guidance to schools and pro-conservation behaviours. to include a minimum of one hour per school “At a time when poor mental health is day to be spent outdoors in wild play and on the rise and the decline of our wildlife learning. Children’s access to nature can be show no sign of slowing down, 30 Days limited by their location and various other Wild demonstrates what a much-needed barriers. For some children, spending time new relationship with nature might look in nature with their school may be their like, for everyone, throughout the year.” L only opportunity, and contribute positively to many aspects of the national curriculum. FURTHER INFORMATION Additionally, this can provide enjoyable and beneficial experiences and lead to improved



Play Written by Mark Hardy, chair, Association of Play Industries

School playgrounds can help alleviate a public health crisis Outdoor play facilities that schools provide are an increasingly important tool in tackling children’s inactivity, says Mark Hardy, chair of the Association of Play Industries The serious threat posed to children’s physical and mental health from sedentary and indoor lifestyles is becoming an ever-more urgent problem to confront. The damage to the health and wellbeing of millions of children means we are facing a public health crisis with repercussions for generations to come. All aspects of children’s lives are being impacted by, quite simply, a failure to move enough. Everything from obesity to mental health, sleep to social skills, concentration to behaviour – all are being negatively affected by chronic levels of inactivity on a mass scale. British children are part of a global pandemic of low physical activity, having very poor levels in international terms and, however simple the solution may sound – to get children moving more – it is a complex issue. Screens and the ‘pull’ indoors Screen time and the dominance of digital culture is a major contributory factor to the children’s inactivity crisis. Our report A Movement for Movement shows, for the first time, a strong link between recreational screen time and children’s inactivity.


their child to leave their screen, and 57 Children are experiencing a strong inducement per cent of those with a child aged 10-12 from screens to stay indoors and are choosing expressed concern about the amount of time to spend their leisure time on screens instead their child spends on screens. of playing outside. Where once they Parents of children aged played outside after school with 8-12 were significantly their friends, the default setting more likely than parents for so many children now is The of younger children to to retreat to their rooms opportuplay say their child prefers alone with their phone, n i t i e s that sch screen time over tablet or laptop, often ool playgro other activities for hours on end. u Seven in 10 We commissioned a have a nds provide pivotal parents with a child survey of over 1,100 role in allev under four said parents through leading crisis in iating the their child preferred parenting website child spending time outdoors Mumsnet and found that health ren’s to screen time. However, 49 per cent of parents agreed less than a quarter of that their child prefers screen parents with a child aged time over other activities. 10-12 agreed with this statement. Fourty-three per cent expressed concern about the amount of time their Dwindling play provision child spends on screens and 48 per cent In addition to the pull indoors from screens, said they find it difficult to persuade there appears to be no let-up in the alarming their child to leave their screen. rate at which public playgrounds are closing What’s more, 60 per cent of parents with a or being neglected. Despite repeated child aged 10-12 find it difficult to persuade



government claims that they are tackling childhood obesity and mental health problems, our research continues to show that there is dwindling investment in public outdoor play: By 2020/21 there will have been a decrease in spend on play facilities of 44 per cent since 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. 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. What do parents think? Children are two to three times more physically active when outdoors than when indoors: they move more, sit less and play for longer. Evidence points to the fact that playgrounds fulfil a unique role in improving children’s levels of physical activity, social interaction, fitness and physical and mental health. The vast majority of families live in urban areas where community playgrounds often represent the only chance for children to play outdoors, particularly in deprived areas. Our Mumsnet survey showed that playgrounds matter to parents and closures impact the amount of activity their children engage in. Sixty-one of parents with access to a local, easily accessible and safe playground said that it makes their child play outside more. Nine in ten parents without access to a local playground said that having access would make their child play outside more, and over half (53 per cent) said their child would be more active if they had more access to local play facilities Schools and Play As the number of play spaces in the community declines and children spend their free time on screens, it is incumbent on schools to go some way to plugging the gap in free outdoor play provision. Outdoor play is associated with better social

With one in three children overweight or obese by year 6 and child mental health problems at record levels, high-quality outdoor play equipment in schools is now more important than ever.

skills in preschool children, and those aged 7 -14 spending more time outdoors are found to be less likely to have peer relationship problems and have better psychosocial health. As such, the play opportunities that school playgrounds provide have a pivotal role in alleviating the crisis in children’s health. Play is absolutely fundamental to children’s healthy physical and mental development. Free, unsupervised play, where children develop their own games and rules, helps them to develop their creativity, imagination and problem-solving skills. Play also improves a child’s ability to focus and concentrate as well as to learn vital social skills. The calculated risks that children naturally take in free play enables them to develop resilience and builds confidence in their own judgement and abilities. In addition, incorporating this kind of physical activity into the school day has a

positive effect on pupils’ behaviour and their ability to focus for longer periods of time. Take your school to new heights With one in three children overweight or obese by year 6 and child mental health problems at record levels, high-quality outdoor play equipment in schools is now more important than ever. Our Mumsnet survey showed that playgrounds matter to parents and that includes those in the school environment; sixty-six per cent of parents said that outdoor play facilities are important when choosing their child’s school and almost one third said they rely on school playgrounds to get their children active School playgrounds help to give children a lifelong love of play and movement so it is vital that you get the right support, advice and expertise. Choosing an Association of Play Industries member will ensure your play areas are the rich and stimulating outdoor learning environment your pupils deserve. Backed by the API’s Professional Code of Conduct, API members operate to the highest standards. They will provide evidence of previous work and references and the API Charter ensures they design exceptional, high-quality, innovative play spaces for children of all ages and abilities. Support from start to finish Our members will visit your school and, where appropriate, meet the decision-making team. Once work is complete, post-installation inspection and maintenance services will be offered to ensure the safety of your facilities for years to come: API members will want to know how your new facilities have impacted your school. L FURTHER INFORMATION



We’re a highly skilled & dedicated landscaping company who’s crew has over 30 years of landscaping experience, including working on a number of award winning instillations. Whatever the size of your project, and no matter the engineering challenges your project may present, we’re more than capable of taking your ideas & turning them into a reality. Having specialised in domestic work, we’re now focusing our attention on the public sector (parks, school playgrounds & sports surface). For more information on how we can help you, please call or email us to arrange a meeting.


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Given the mild winter experienced throughout the British Isles during 2019/2020, and the fact that grass continues to grow – regardless of season – if temperatures are above 14 degrees Celsius, a schedule of mowing is likely to start from early this year, providing areas are suitably dry. The first few cuts of the year should be higher than usual. Water-logged areas should not be mowed until they can sustain the weight of pedestrians and machinery. Remedial works to improve drainage may be performed on areas that suffer from persistent water-logging throughout the year. The main cause of water-logging is usually compaction, but French drains or perforated plastic pipe may also be considered to ensure large areas of turf are useable throughout the year. Many variations of drainage can be installed with minimal disturbance to an established surface. Regular aeration is considered essential on competitive sports pitches, but may also be applied to general sports fields to great effect. Lack of aeration caused by compaction from human and machine traffic (particularly during wet weather) can result in restricted movement of air, water and nutrients – essential for the healthy growth of grass – through the soil profile. The solution is to use tractor-mounted equipment which uses an implement to penetrate the surface of the turfed area and create

Play areas and sports surfacing 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 check through visual checks for signs of additional space within the soil to benefit damage and wear and tear, along with a tactile the rooting system of grass. Of relevance test. Timber play equipment should be checked to managers of amenity areas, this process for cracks and anything exceeding 8mm should will result in turf more resistant to waterbe reported. Moving parts should be checked logging, healthier growth and better rooting, and lubricated as necessary. Make sure the meaning grass is more resilient to drought. safety surface areas are clear of debris and trip Areas of turf that have become worn or hazards and check for sign of wear and tear and damaged may be replaced during the early replace as needed. A professional inspection season to encourage new growth more resilient should take place at least once a year. If serious to traffic later in the year. Seed or turf may defects are detected, then equipment should be be used, depending on the desired speed of immobilised and repaired as soon as possible. recovery, budget and maintenance available. All play equipment and surfaces should comply with European Standards of Play Equipment Planted beds (EN1176) and or Surfacing (EN1177). Tender shrubs, ornamental grasses, specimens It’s also a great time to check sport’s grown for winter stems and spring and summersurfacing. Continue to keep surfaces free of flowering shrubs should be pruned in the debris, and in frosty conditions and when snow spring to encourage new growth and flowering, has settled, keep off artificial grass as walking together with the correct form. The removal on the surface can damage the artificial fibres. of dead, diseased or dying growth may also be It is also best to try not to remove snow once undertaken during this period. Pruning activities its settled but allow it to thaw as removal carried out after March must only be carried can again damage the fibres. Avoid applying out after checks for nesting birds. Mulch may rock salt or grit as this, once dissolved can be applied to beds to supress weed growth, cause contamination and damage to the or cultivated by hand where time allows. surface. Specialist PDV salts and antifreezes can be applied by contractors Trees to help prevent ice and Deciduous tree maintenance is snow settling, but is not generally undertaken during With appropriate for all autumn and winter, or in isolated playgro surfaces, so specialist cases during summer to avoid equipm und advice should be e n t and surfacin sort for your type g u sed less at this t of surface. One i of the biggest an idea me of year, it’s l time t problem’s artificial o carry out visu surfaces face at al this time of the year for sign checks is the potential to s of damag flood, with a build-up e of contaminates water will be slow to drain, therefore regular brushing and replacement 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. L

Written by British Association of Landscape Industries (BALI)

What should schools be doing to ensure that their green spaces, outdoor play areas and sports pitches are in the best condition for the late-spring and early-summer months?


Getting green areas ready for the milder months

species-specific pathogens present during spring. However, dead, diseased and dying limbs may be removed from specimens during spring as a safety measure, and coppicing maybe undertaken during early spring to promote new, young, growth. As with smaller shrubs, due diligence should be shown in relation to nesting birds; beyond March only trees requiring essential works should be pruned, following a thorough inspection for nesting birds. Guards, tree supports and irrigation systems on younger specimens may also be inspected and corrected.




STEM Written by Jane Dowden, acting head of education, British Science Association

Climate change, STEM and the next generation Traditionally, STEM subjects have been regarded by some students as slightly more abstracted from day to day life when compared to humanities-based subjects. However, with the growing coverage surrounding climate change, younger generations are rapidly becoming aware of the relevance STEM subjects hold in everyday life, writes Jane Dowden from the British Science Association The climate crisis has brought science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) subjects to the fore amongst younger generations – with millions of young people marching globally, asking the world to listen to Greta Thunberg and “unite behind the science”. As a result, we are seeing young people becoming increasingly aware of climate related issues. Traditionally, STEM subjects have been regarded by some students as slightly more abstracted from day to day life when compared to humanities-based subjects. However, with the growing coverage surrounding climate change and its impending danger, younger generations are rapidly becoming aware of the relevance STEM subjects hold in everyday life – and are engaging with it more than they perhaps would have before. This is unsurprising and vital, given the daunting predictions that are being made about their futures. Certainly, the climate crisis is engaging a wider range of students in science than just


those that have a natural inclination towards the subject. Given that science will be at the heart of any solution to the damaging effects of climate change, this is a very positive step and should be built on further by schools and educators, and there are a variety of ways this can happen.

ways. Firstly, the subject is quite overwhelming, and this allows The clim educators to talk through ate crisis is students’ fears surrounding e the topic – whilst ensuring a wider ngaging that the next generation student range of are suitably aware of s i than ju n science the implications that the st those climate crisis brings with it. have an that inclinat Secondly, it can io toward harness the power of s the n this renewed awareness subject to create positive change. Students are undeniably aware of the urgency of climate issues, but by teaching it in schools, students Climate on the curriculum can feel empowered with the knowledge The demand for greater awareness in climate to make changes rather than becoming science has begun to reach the attention bystanders of the impending dangers. of governments globally. Most recently, the Teachers have the power to act now, New Zealand government has decided that with climate change reportedly inducing it will be adding climate change to their anxiety in young people, schools should be curriculum. This is a positive step in several harnessing STEM education to help alleviate


Project based learning At the British Science Association, we are firm believers in project-based learning (PBL) as a method of encouraging young people into STEM learning – and have created PBL based sustainable solutions projects as a part of our CREST Awards scheme. PBL is designed for creating solutions to real world problems and naturally lends itself to STEM and interdisciplinary learning. It also incorporates both academic and practical learning, allowing for a range of students to be catered for – whatever their learning preference. Moreover, it encourages teamwork, giving students the opportunity to work together in diverse thinking groups. This collaboration helps to highlight how varied perspectives are integral to creating innovative solutions. Projects can be centred around the local community by identifying what the key climate issues in the area are and what sort of initiatives could help tackle these problems. Concentrating on addressing problems locally, allows students to break the larger problem of climate change down to something manageable, otherwise it can easily become an overwhelming topic. Furthermore, it allows for greater personalisation; through creating a solution to a problem faced by their own community

students can truly understand and appreciate the impact and importance of their work. This practical and personalised approach to STEM subjects can help sustain engagement in the subject and highlight the importance of developing these skills whether or not they wish to follow a STEM related career path. Although many students will have some understanding of climate change and its causes, it is still vital to get them thinking about the context of the project. You could start by asking students what they already know about climate change, before helping them to organise their thoughts, for example using headings like Causes, Impact and Solutions. Support them to develop their knowledge further through independent research or class activities. News articles can be a great way to trigger discussion and further investigation. Encourage students to look behind the headlines and see what evidence is used to back up claims. Next, ask students to consider their local community; how it contributes to climate change and how their local area might be affected. Then build on this by explaining any further examples of what the local community does to contribute to climate change, and what impact climate change is having or might potentially have on the local community. This gives students a more personal understanding of environmental problems and helps them comprehend why it is so important to develop the skills to tackle them. Ask your class what they think isn’t being done to tackle the problem that ought to be. To help students get their ideas started, try using group brainstorming. This can help build confidence and brings together different opinions and ideas. Young people can build on each other’s ideas and recognise the need to take into account different perspectives. Through coming up with their own solutions, students can develop a greater sense of

ownership over their project which will help to further enrich their engagement. The climate crisis will affect the youngest generations more than any other, so it makes sense that it induces engagement with science learning. However, it is important that schools harness that engagement for something positive, as they will be the generation in charge of tackling the fallout from climate change. As PBL naturally engages a wider range of learners it is a good place to start and can help demonstrate that diverse ideas and thinking is exactly what is needed to tackle a problem at this scale. L


these fears. Science educators can engage students in climate relevant science lessons. Through encouraging further awareness of the underlying climate issues, educators can ensure that the next generation are equipped with the information they need to tackle the problems – and inspire young people to begin a discussion on how to build solutions to these. It is important to always shape these discussions in a way that highlights how we can all can play a fundamental role in preventing the climate catastrophe from escalating. This way, students can feel greater control over the issues and their futures.


Half of teachers feel unable to deal with student eco-anxiety Half of teachers feel ill-equipped to deal with student anxiety around climate change, according to new research from environmental charity Global Action Plan. Climate-anxiety is proving to be a key challenge in today’s in school environment, adding to the stress levels of teenagers and teachers who feel ill-equipped to help their students. Forty per cent of the teachers surveyed feel that their senior leadership team is not engaging in climate change as an issue. Teachers can find themselves trapped in a cycle of inaction, as they have a lack of knowledge on how to respond and limited resources (or training) to help them discuss the issue with their students. With so many teachers feeling ill-prepared to deal with eco-anxiety this can lead to paralysis and a feeling that the subject is just too tough to tackle. This lack of action by schools compounds the problem and creates a cycle of anxiety among young people, who feel this critical issue is not seen as important by their schools. 91 per cent of the students surveyed would like to see their school doing more to engage with them about the issues around climate change. Global Action Plan, working with a specialist psychologist, has designed an Introductory Guide called Turning anxiety into action, which will be hosted on the Transform Our World site. The Guide is for teachers to help them manage student eco-anxiety and to facilitate conversations about climate action engagement with school leaders.



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A new heating system in a matter of days

Helping you make the green shift to LED lighting

When creating a modern environmental application for schools, pre-built packaged plant rooms not only maximise space, especially if sited on a flat rooftop, but provide a proven method to secure new, highly efficient and costeffective to operate domestic hot water (DHW), heating and low carbon systems. With a choice of gas, electric or renewables, such air source heat pumps (ASHP), that can be combined into a single packaged hybrid system, they provide a timely answer to meeting new sustainability targets. A recent Berkshire school project featured a single, large 7m x 4m GRP enclosure incorporating a TOTEM microCHP and, a full cascade of condensing gas boilers, controls and ancillaries pre-fitted and connected, ready to be sited immediately upon delivery and

V-TAC UK Ltd brings high quality, sustainable LED lighting solutions to the UK education sector. The company’s ceaseless innovation and extensive experience in the UK lighting market has shaped its diverse range of next-generation LED lighting technologies, designed to provide energy-efficient, professional lighting solutions that not only save energy, but also significantly support pedagogical concepts and learning. The positive impact of the right light on the ability to concentrate, well-being and safety has been scientifically verified. V-TAC enables you to make the most of these concepts, offering a full turn key solution to the education sector using our enhanced range of five-year warranty LED lighting solutions with Samsung’s reliable LED components. As a result, V-TAC’s lighting solutions can simulate the natural course of

installed within a matter of days. This dramatically accelerated overall project delivery timescales and considerably reduced costs. To achieve the best results, the decision-making relating to heating and DHW systems needs to be finalised early on to allow for the increased lead-in times. Adveco’s design engineers guided the projects team through this process to ensure a highly resilient system was fully defined for before construction began, ensuring rapid return on investment and lower ongoing operating costs.





daylight, improving motivation, well-being and productivity. V-TAC protects both the budget and the environment, ensuring low energy consumption and low maintenance costs, reducing your carbon footprint and saving up to 80 per cent on your energy bill. The energy management team will visit your facility and assess your current lighting situation, providing a free report identifying potential savings. Comprehensive funding packages are also available to help you make the shift to LED lighting with minimal disruption to your business.

FURTHER INFORMATION Tel. +442072991212


A new approach to procurement

Protect your school during holiday periods & beyond

St Alban’s Primary is a catholic school in Hornchurch, East London. Built in 1972, the school provides education for children aged 4 to 11. St Alban’s Finance Officer, Trish Pascoe, joined the Brokerage Service in 2014 and has been impressed with the collaborative approach and expertise she has received: “The Brokerage Service has many benefits. In particular, the time it saves us by researching companies and tendering to ensure that we receive the best quality assured companies and value for money. “The benefits of a collaborative approach to procurement are huge. The time saved for us as individuals is a big factor, as time is money, and the large scale approach attracts a wider range of companies to take part, which ultimately gives the brokerage more scope to secure the best deals for us.

It goes without saying that the safety of your pupils, staff, and visitors is a top priority throughout the school term. But when your school is vacant – during holiday periods, for instance – it’s important to know that sufficient security measures have been put in place to maximise the safety of your buildings against potential trespass, damage, or even theft. For over 100 years, Procter Contracts has been designing, manufacturing and installing high-quality fencing and gates for schools. Today it leads the market, so you can

“The team have the skill set to ask all the relevant questions and take the companies through due process that, as an individual school, is difficult. “I would also like to mention the team who are always so supportive, informative and helpful. The impact the Brokerage has on my role in school is, without a doubt, amazing.”

FURTHER INFORMATION Find out more about the Brokerage here: http://hes.

be sure that Procter has the knowledge and experience to meet your requirements. If you are unsure what measures you currently have in place at your school, but if security is a current concern for you with the holidays on the horizon, contact Procter to arrange for one of its safety experts to visit your premises to carry out a free site survey and security audit. Call 0800 2944 177 to arrange your free security audit




Solar powered traffic control solutions

Integrated security systems for schools by DSSL Group

Controlling the access into a staff car park or as part of a safe crossing point on an internal road, Dofygate can provide a very cost effective system. Its barrier can control parents who might otherwise ignore instruction not to park in a particular area or bring their vehicle to a stop at a particular point, all done without the need for confrontation. Power is provided by an integral solar charged battery so no wiring to or between the gate units. A full range of opening options are available including transmitter fobs, keypad, intercom, fixed radio button and auto open. Unlike alternatives a Dofygate is a barrier designed for solar rather than a solar panel fitted

DSSL Group is a security and fire company founded in 1998 as a premier provider of industry leading CCTV, access control, intercom, intruder alarm, wireless network infrastructure, automated doors, perimeter detection, gates, barriers, perimeter fencing, and fire detection & protection. DSSL Group has a highly qualified engineering workforce with considerable expertise in development, supply, installation, maintenance and integration, bringing a new dimension to development, installation and maintenance of total security solutions and offers an extremely competitive service. DSSL’s team comprises some of the UK’s most experienced fire and security technicians, committed to planning and delivering projects with the finest attention to detail. All its staff follow a structured development

to an existing design. The carbon fibre arms are lightweight with a breakaway clutch meaning the arm survives accidental vehicle impacts and is easily reset. Should any contact be made with a person or vehicle the force applied by the gate is light and harmless. Most systems are fixed position but Dofygate’s recently introduced Wheelygate comes complete with its own mobile stand, providing an extremely versatile remote controlled traffic barrier system.


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training programme ensuring they keep up to date with the latest technologies, techniques and industry developments. Over the years, DSSL Group has acquired valuable skills working within the educational sector where it has undertaken works for various institutions including schools, nurseries, academies, colleges, universities, and local authorities. DSSL Group’s responsibility to its employees, the communities in which it operates, its clients, consultants and supply chain is integral to the work it undertakes.




Schools get peace of mind with Guardforce

A one-stop-shop for school security systems

Guardforce was established in 1993 and since then has been successfully trading and serving its valued clients in all sectors, from construction to concierge from London to Leeds. Guardforce services include manned-guarding, mobile patrols, locks & unlocks, keyholding & emergency response, void property inspections, neighbourhood patrols and control room services. Guardforce is an Approved Contractor with the SIA since the scheme was launched in 2006 and its recent audit score placed the company amongst the top five per cent of the ACS accredited companies. Guardforce’s quality standards are approved with an ISO 9001:2015 certificate, and Health & Safety standards are accredited with Contractor PLUS scheme which also covers the SAFE contractor scheme.

Lee Security Ltd is a fully compliant, NSI Gold approved, fire and security company, formed in 1982 and incorporated in 1983. The company looks after the requirements of commercial, educational and domestic customers. Although based in the Borough of Enfield, Lee Security has had a long established relationship with the London Borough of Barnet, installing many security systems in their schools, office buildings and libraries. Lee Security is a one stop shop, from concept to installation, working seamlessly with architects and contractors on behalf of the clients. Lee Security is totally committed to the task, working to strict timetables and budgets, in order to offer complete customer satisfaction. Lee Security has recently teamed up with Tower Leasing in order to offer its

Guardforce’s most valued asset is its team of officers. They are licensed by the SIA in sectors covering door supervision to guarding and CCTV. They are also fully vetted, professionally trained with majority of them first aid & CSCS certified. Guardforce’s experienced and qualified management keeps its team trained up with latest skills to ensure that its customers get the best of services, value for their money and above all, peace of mind when they chose Guardforce as their security provider.


customers more choice in their payment terms, meaning no significant upfront outlay. Then having installed the client’s security, be it a fire, intruder, CCTV, access control or video entry system, Lee Security then maintains the system at regular intervals in order to comply with the client’s insurance requirements and ensure the smooth running of the system long into the future. Lee Security is also there for the customer 24/7 365 days of the year should the need arise.

FURTHER INFORMATION Call free on: 0800 731 3365 Email:



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An education for all

EDLounge believes that all children should be given the best chance of an education, therefore there are no limits to the resources it provides to cater for all circumstances that occur on/offsite school. EDLounge’s services supports schools with curriculum lessons, behavioural repair work and ensuring that those students who are unable to attend mainstream education are given safe and supervised lessons to limit disruption to their learning. EDLounge has extensive content covering 50 topics that allows schools access to over 12,000 lessons. And by allowing teachers the ability to tailor make learning each

Hillbrush knows what clean really means Cleanliness and hygiene is paramount within the educational sector where young people are involved. Ensuring that pupils are safe and healthy is the top concern and having a clean and safe learning environment is key for development success. Hygiene and sanitation regulations in schools is key to ensure that your staff are following the correct health-related policy. With a range of over twothousand products and distribution partners in over 90 countries, Hillbrush is the largest UK manufacturer of brushware and hygienic cleaning tools, selling to a global customer base. Setting the benchmark for quality and innovation, the mission for continuous development and outstanding service is as prominent now as it was when the company was founded in 1922.

student is learning to their personal ability and style. Each year EDLounge attends BETT where it encourages schools to come along, meet its friendly team and experience its services for yourself. EDLounge also takes time out to talk about issues or circumstances you are currently facing in school to tailor make a solution for you. If you don’t want to wait for BETT and would like further information in regards to how EDLounge can benefit your school and importantly your students, please contact us.


Hillbrush has developed an extensive product line designed for a range of sectors, from hygiene products suitable for food manufacture and production, commercial brushes and ancillary items – perfect for janitorial cleaning applications, to traditional natural fibre products for the agricultural and construction industries. Hillbrush continues to be the only single-source manufacturer to provide our customers with the diverse range of quality brushware and cleaning solutions for all industries.

FURTHER INFORMATION +44 (0)1747 860494


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