Edition 2, 2013
Bedford Academy has a stunning new building p10
Excellence at Cranbrook with Ivan Mulinder p12
Healthy Eating Week for schools p16
Keeping the Flame Alive pg 30
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Contents 2 News
Claire Smith on the new Bedford Academy
14 Food Allergies by Vita Whitaker
Healthy Eating Week for schools by Roy Ballam British Nutrition Foundation
Excellence at Cranbrook with Ivan Mulinder
Keeping the Flame Alive by Yvonne Baker, Chief Executive, Myscience
academies: Coping with the health and safety minefield by Wayne Dunning.
31 More news 28 Product showcase
Why Design and Technology is vital to our economic future
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Ipswich Academy students form environmental group to help re-home lizards A group of eight Ipswich Academy students have helped to build a new habitat for a species of common lizard on the site of their new school in Braziers Wood Road. The environment group visited the site and enjoyed a talk from senior ecologist Richard Kilshaw before starting work on the habitat. Mr Kilshaw had captured and moved 27 common lizards from the area that was being developed as a car park for the new Academy during the summer. The lizards had colonised the area from the adjoining Braziers Wood site, where they were subsequently released following minor habitat improvements to accommodate them.
The students then created a habitat pile comprising a carefully constructed pile of logs and branches within which reptiles can bask on exposed branches on top and at the edges but able to quickly take cover within the pile to escape predation themselves.
The environment group were shown good reptile habitat - rough grassland - and learnt that lizards require plenty of sunny spots to bask as they are cold blooded, and niches such as a matted litter layer and tussocks to find cover and food.
After their work, the students were given the opportunity to see the progress of the new building, due for completion in Autumn 2013.
They were also shown an area of good grassland habitat where a margin of encroaching scrub had been cleared; they learnt that this was to maintain and increase the grassland habitat, and that scrub clearance needed to be completed during the winter to avoid disturbance to nesting birds.
Those involved in the visit were Caine Windsor, Amy Tremain, Mariam Ali, Emma Daniels, Charles Clack, Adam Hamilton, Michael Gardiner and Joshua Grimwood.
The EcoKids Textile Recycling Project helps schools raise money while increasing awareness about recycling.
Launch of National College for Teaching and Leadership The merged Teaching Agency and National College will be known as the National College for Teaching and Leadership, Education Secretary Michael Gove announced on 2nd April.
Schools find an innovative new way to teach students about recycling whilst raising funds.
The National College for Teaching and Leadership is a single agency focused on promoting high-quality teaching and school leadership. Its remit will also include continuous professional and leadership development and supporting school improvement.
For schools in need of money, there is a new fundraising tool on the horizon; the EcoKids Textile Recycling Project. EcoKids is a great way to raise children’s awareness about recycling while helping schools pay for costly projects or extracurricular activities that keep kids safe and active within the community.
The main driver behind the merger is to bring together the key building blocks for the creation of the school-led system. The new agency will build on the best from the Teaching Agency and National College and will work in new ways to support the school-led system.
The project is operated through their website, where schools and other Organisations can easily sign up. After registration, their professional representatives contact the Organisation to discuss the details of the program and provide the necessary materials, such as collection bags and promotional pamphlets.
Education Secretary Michael Gove said: The creation of the National College for Teaching and Leadership brings together and builds on the excellent work led by the Teaching Agency and the National College. Importantly it will ensure that the best schools are at the heart of teacher training, professional development and school improvement. High-quality teaching and leadership are vital in raising standards in schools.
The program accepts several different forms of textiles, including high-quality clothing, soft toys, shoes, handbags, linens, portable electronics, costume jewellery and bric-a-brac. Children are asked to bring these items from home to put into collection bags that will eventually be sent to children in Africa, Ukraine, Poland and Latvia. Items that aren’t of sufficient quality are recycled into industrial cloths.
Charlie Taylor, chief executive of the new agency, said: The merger of the National College and Teaching Agency makes perfect sense. This is an exciting opportunity, uniting the strengths of both. Together we will be better able to support the best schools, the best leaders and the best teachers as they lead the system.
On the collection date, the program sends an EcoKids van to collect the items. Schools receive £600.00 for each tonne of textiles. The project provides a great opportunity to schools that are having trouble providing for children within their budgets.
The Teaching Agency is responsible for the recruitment, supply and initial training and development of teachers. It also supports the recruitment and development of early education and childcare workers, special educational needs coordinators and education psychologists, and oversees the regulation of the conduct of teachers. In addition, the exams delivery support unit supports exams officers and manages general qualifications logistics.
The project has helped schools and charities across the United Kingdom raise over £380,000 since starting in 2010, and also provides a great medium to teach kids the importance of recycling. For more information about the EcoKids project, or to have your school/charity register to raise funds through the scheme, visit their website at www.ecokidsproject.co.uk
The National College for School Leadership works to develop and support great leaders of schools and early years settings so that they can make a positive difference to children’s lives.
New ‘InstaBadge’ is the Re-usable Name Badge Innovation from Badgemaster Badgemaster, the UK’s leading manufacturer of engraved, readyto-wear employee name badges has launched a new product range to fulfil the needs of the re-usable name badge market. ‘InstaBadge’, as its name suggests, enables employers themselves to create instant name badges for new starters. “InstaBadge offers the good looks and performance of a permanent badge with all the flexibility of a re-usable one”, explains John Bancroft, Badgemaster’s Managing Director. “It’s ideal for workplaces with frequent staff changes, as new employees can be smartly badged from the word go.” The wearer’s name is held within the badge rather than engraved onto it, so employers can control costs by re-using the badge frames when staff leave. The design of the badge frames, together with Badgemaster’s long-established expertise in corporate personalisation, means that customers who prefer the re-usable option needn’t sacrifice either choice or visual appeal for economy. The new range includes 10 different styles, all available in any base colour and with plenty of space for company logos and corporate designs to be accurately reproduced.
Badgemaster will also provide free label production software to help customers print names professionally.” Of special interest to catering, food and beverage serving and food preparation staff, the InstaBadge has a unique advantage for all environments where health and safety are paramount. Its unique patent protected design combines the fastener as an integral part of the badge and so prevents the pin ever becoming detached from the badge.
In terms of aesthetics and durability, “InstaBadge neatly overcomes the drawbacks often associated with re-usable name badges”, explains Royal Warrant holders Badgemaster. “The wearer’s name is printed on card or paper and is held perfectly secure and level behind a protective front, so there will never be any lop-sided printing or peeling corners to contend with.
For more information about InstaBadge and other Badgemaster products contact the customer services team on 01623 723112. Email firstname.lastname@example.org or log on to www.badgemaster.co.uk
KIMBERLY-CLARK PROFESSIONAL* collaborates with Disney on Healthy Schools Project* An innovative initiative to raise hand hygiene awareness KIMBERLY-CLARK PROFESSIONAL* is to collaborate with Disney in its new campaign to improve hand hygiene among children. Data published by the Department of Education¹ has revealed that every day, thousands of children across the UK are absent from nurseries and schools due to minor illnesses, often spread by poor hand hygiene. Independent studies have also shown that regular hand washing among school children can greatly lower absenteeism, by reducing the spread of the germs that cause illnesses such as common colds, coughs and stomach upsets. ²/³ In response to this, KIMBERLY-CLARK PROFESSIONAL* has launched a new initiative named The Healthy Schools Project* to improve hand hygiene amongst young children in schools and nurseries. The project will provide free resources including lesson plans about hand hygiene to all schools and nurseries taking part, which teachers can integrate into their curriculum. In addition, KIMBERLY-CLARK PROFESSIONAL* will also display popular Disney characters on a new range of printed hand hygiene dispensers, as well as on a Education Magazine
series of colourful posters for bathroom walls. These will be created to convey the key messages of the programme in a fun way that appeals to children, featuring characters including Mickey and Minnie Mouse and Donald Duck. Popular Disney characters on a new range of KIMBERLY-CLARK PROFESSIONAL* printed hand hygiene dispensers This child-friendly campaign aims to help teachers reinforce positive messages about the benefits of good hand hygiene while engaging children to take greater responsibility in washing their hands. Dr Louise Vickerman, Education Manager at KIMBERLY-CLARK PROFESSIONAL*, said: “It makes sense to introduce good hand hygiene to children when they’re young so that it stays with them their whole lives. By involving images of beloved Disney characters such as Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck, they are more likely to engage in the activity and learn about the importance of hand washing.” Philippe Roucoule, Director, Food, Health and Beauty, The Walt Disney Company adds “We found that when a child connects with a character they are more likely to choose a healthier option, whether this is 5
making a healthier food choice, or in this case practising good hand hygiene. Disney characters resonate with children of all ages and we’re pleased that some of our most established characters are featuring in the new campaign by KIMBERLY-CLARK PROFESSIONAL*. Our characters are a great way to engage children and we look forward to them making their way into schools across the UK and Germany as part of The Healthy Schools Project*.” The Healthy Schools Project* will launch in schools and nurseries across the UK and in Germany from January 2013, with a view to further expand into other European countries. Kimberly-Clark Corporation and can be visited at www.kcprofessional.com
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Top national approval for Hartlepool youth project A leading Hartlepool youth centre is celebrating after earning top national backing for the quality and safety of its activities for schoolchildren and other young people. The votes of confidence have been given to the West View Project – a not-for-profit organisation which runs activities for young people aged 5-19 from across the Tees Valley, including watersports, orienteering, rock-climbing and woodland activities.
Young people enjoy a West View Project canoeing activity
Its licence to run adventure activities has once again been renewed for two years by the Adventure Activities Licensing Authority (AALA), which inspects activity centres and providers on behalf of the Department for Education and Skills.
West View Project team members Matthew Blanchard (left) and Michael Cole with the organisation’s new LOTC and AALA certificates.
Dave Wise, West View Project Chairman, said: “We pride ourselves on running a wide range of exciting and challenging activities to an extremely high safety standard and we are delighted to once again receive this national recognition of the quality of our courses. “We look forward to welcoming even more children and young people from Hartlepool and the wider Tees Valley to our activities.” Beth Gardner, Chief Executive of the Council for Learning Outside the Classroom, added: “Educational visits are among the most memorable experiences in a child’s school life.
The AALA will only issue a licence if it is satisfied that the provider complies with nationallyaccepted standards of good practice in managing health and safety when running outdoor activities for young people.
“The LOTC badge offers teachers a guarantee that not only is a venue providing the sort of educational value that they can build on in class long after the visit but they also have the appropriate risk management structures in place.” The West View Project currently works with over 40 primary and secondary schools from Hartlepool and across the Tees Valley and is now taking bookings for a packed programme of activities from Easter onwards.
The West View Project has also shown itself to be top class by being awarded a further Learning Outside The Classroom (LOTC) Quality Badge. Presented by the Council for Learning Outside The Classroom, the badge is designed to make it easier for teachers to identify organisations which provide quality educational visits outside the classroom in which any risks are managed effectively.
UK Charity Teach A Man to Fish have announced DLF Public School in India as the Global Winner of the School Enterprise Challenge 2012.
This announcement coincides with the launch of the 2013 competition which is now open for registrations. The competition which is in its third year has motivated over 800 schools across the world to set up their own school-based
For more information, call 01429 272699 or e-mail email@example.com.
enterprises and highlighted the innovative and entrepreneurial talents of their students. DLF Public School stood out from the wide variety of schools that entered with their environmentally and socially sustainable crafts business. The USD $5000 ‘Global Winner Prize’ will be awarded to the school in order to help them develop their business, school and community whilst acting as an inspiration to others within and outside the School Enterprise Challenge community. “It [the competition] encouraged students to collaborate among themselves and come out with ideas of setting up their own stalls …. In a nutshell this whole exercise ignited the flame of entrepreneurship among them.” Teacher, DLF Public School. To encourage young people to set up businesses that value social, environmental and financial sustainability, the competition is awarding $2500 to schools that have excelled in one of these areas. Vidyadhiraja High School in India has been awarded the ‘People Prize’ for using their business to improve their community. Ilowala Secondary School in Tanzania has been awarded the ‘Planet Prize’ for their environmentally friendly beekeeping enterprise and Indeco Community School in Zambia have been awarded the ‘Profit Prize’ for their tailoring and chicken rearing business which generated an impressive profit of $27,000 in 2012. 6
A further $25,000 of regional and country prizes are being awarded to outstanding schools in Armenia, Dubai, Ghana, India, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Paraguay, Peru, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda and UK. For the 2013 competition, Teach A Man To Fish have partnered with The Royal Commonwealth Society and Ashoka to present the ‘Commonwealth School Enterprise Challenge 2013’ which launched on the 11th March in conjunction with the Commonwealth Observance at Westminster Abbey in London, in the presence of The Duke of Edinburgh, Richard Branson and thousands of enterprising students and teachers. Competition organisers Teach A Man To Fish are excited to welcome new schools to take part in the competition, as well as work with current schools to develop their businesses. “We are delighted to be organising the School Enterprise Challenge for the third year. With more countries and schools getting involved the competition will be even bigger and better and more young people will be equipped with the skills needed to enter the business world,” Nik Kafka, Director of Teach A Man To Fish. For more information on competition winners or to register for this year’s competition please visit www. schoolenterprisechallenge.org
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News involving 25 key organisations in 2011. This taskforce published a report in March 2012, which brought together evidence for the first time of the benefits of giving children a chance to grow their own food.
Food growing set to be on National Curriculum Garden Organic is delighted its long campaign for every schoolchild to have a chance to grow their own food looks set to succeed – with “horticulture” due to become part of the National Curriculum. Garden Organic is thrilled that horticulture has been introduced as a key activity for design and technology in the draft version of the National Curriculum*. The final version of the National Curriculum is due to be published
The report offers compelling evidence showing how food growing in schools can help pupils to achieve, build life and employability skills, and improve their health and wellbeing.
in August 2013 and taught in schools from September 2014. Myles Bremner, Chief Executive of Garden Organic, said: “We are absolutely delighted to see horticulture playing a key part in the design and technology curriculum.
Myles Bremner added: “While it is wonderful to see that the importance of food growing in schools finally being recognised, more work still needs to be done in Key Stage 4 and beyond to ensure that young people are being encouraged to see horticulture as a viable career.”
“This will give pupils an opportunity to grow their own fruit and vegetables, which is a vital part of their wider food education and brings so many other benefits in terms of health, wellbeing and proenvironmental behaviours.
Garden Organic has been actively supporting schools to grow their own food since it launched its Garden Organic for Schools project in 2000.
Garden Organic – the UK’s leading organic growing charity - was chosen to lead the government-backed Food Growing in Schools Taskforce
And the charity has been working as part of the successful Food for Life Partnership since 2007 to help more than 4,400
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schools to get growing. This partnership brings together the Soil Association, Garden Organic, Focus on Food and the Health Education Trust to transform food culture in schools and communities across England. To find out more about Garden Organic’s work with schools visit www.gardenorganic.org. uk/schools. * “The National Curriculum in England - framework document for consultation” (see pages 156-160) says that the National Curriculum for design and technology aims to ensure that all pupils “understand food and nutrition and, where possible, have opportunities to learn to cook”. And it states that pupils in Key Stages 1 to 3 should be taught practical knowledge, skills and crafts working in fields such as “ “horticulture: to cultivate plants for practical purposes, such as for food or for decorative displays. To find out more about the Food for Life Partnership visit http:// www.foodforlife.org.uk/.
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Sherborne schools come together to explore the future of iPad technology in the classroom Sherborne Girls in Dorset was recently the host of a fascinating series of lectures and workshops by chief executive of the iPad Academy and formerly Microsoft Professor of Advanced Learning Technologies, Professor Steve Molyneux. As part of the annual Joint Schools’ training programme, teachers across Sherborne’s secondary schools and Sherborne Prep School explored the adoption of iPads in schools and the implications for effective roll-out.
History detectives investigate the past Education charity launches new resource for Key Stage 2 students Students turn detective and investigate the past Intrepid young history detectives will have the opportunity to use their powers of investigation to fit together the pieces of an historical jigsaw puzzle, thanks to Black Country Living Museum. On February 16 the education charity launches a new history detectives’ resource for Key Stage 2 students and school groups aged 7-11. Once students don their detective hats history becomes hands-on, relevant and exciting, energetic and completely captivating. Lines of inquiry include evidence gathering from buildings and period settings, objects, photographs, archival records and oral histories as the history detectives use their enquiry skills to learn about the fascinating lives of real Black Country children who lived during the Victorian era. Mel Weatherley, Head of Learning at Black Country Living Museum said: “This exciting new programme encourages creative and independent thinking and the development of oral skills. It provides opportunities for students to make choices, ask valid historical questions and find answers.
From left to right: Peter Tait, Headmaster Sherborne Prep School; Jenny Dwyer, Headmistress Sherborne Girls; Professor Steve Molyneux; Steve Hillier, Headteacher Gryphon School
The day finished with a thoughtprovoking talk by Professor Molyneux to an audience of more than 350 Sherborne-based teachers entitled ‘The Four Ages of Education’, in which he reflected upon the rapid shift towards these devices in the classroom. He also gave some fascinating examples of how iPads are already being used in learning – from interactive lessons to study aids - and how teachers’ attitudes need to evolve to embrace these changes. Sherborne Girls headmistress Jenny Dwyer said: “This inset day provided a great opportunity for colleagues from across schools in the area to come together and exchange ideas and information and also to find out more about the wider implications for the educational landscape. As a school we have always embraced new and innovative technology so this has been a really constructive exercise.”
Black Country Living Museum policeman has learning history all locked up.
Back in the classroom they will be able to feedback their discoveries and compare and
contrast the lives of the different children they have investigated. The experience will stimulate the imagination, encourage empathy and understanding. ” The History Detectives programme uses the Museum’s Collection to paint a picture and encourages today’s children to engage with the youngsters of yesterday. History education suddenly becomes exciting as pupils discover they are not just weaving a story from the past but that they are an integral part of the plot! Bookings can be made through the Museum’s ticket office on 0121 520 8054 or via the Museum’s website at www.bclm.com
Malaysia goes to Google Apps for Education The country of Malaysia is moving 10 million students, teachers and parents to cloudbased productivity suite Google Apps and deploying superfast web-based computers – Google Chromebooks to primary and secondary schools. This is part of a national plan to reform the country’s educational system, providing students with the tools they need to work more collaboratively and giving them, quicker, more secure access to the world’s information. To deploy technology across a nationwide school system, computers need to be simple, manageable and secure. Chromebooks are ideal for learning and sharing in the classroom, there’s nothing complicated to learn, they boot up in seconds and have virus protection built in. They also offer easy setup and deployment, which means they’re ready to go the moment a student opens the lid and logs in. And with reduced overhead costs, Chromebooks are a cost-efficient option to deploy technology at scale. To date, more than 3,000 schools worldwide, from Edina, Minnesota to Point England, New Zealand, have deployed Chromebooks to improve attendance and graduation rates, make learning more fun and enable students to take more ownership for their learning. Google Apps allows students to work together on projects, sharing and collaborating on documents, spread sheets and presentations. As all documents are stored in the cloud, and accessed via the internet, teachers are able to feedback directly into documents and suggest improvements from home whilst they mark homework. By giving students access to Chromebooks, teachers can make lessons more fun and engaging and give pupils fast and secure access to the wealth of online information they need to conduct research - all through the power of the internet. Google Apps for Education can be downloaded free from www.google.com/enterprise/ apps/education/
Plessyngton Lodge is the second phase of Manchester Grammar Schoolâ€™s (MGS) plans to provide extra classrooms and staff accommodation, thereby increasing the Junior School roll. Following a massive demand to provide places for boys aged from seven, MGS extended its Junior School by opening Bexwyke Lodge. This was soon full so the Governors commissioned Plessyngton Lodge which would allow the school to increase its Junior School roll from 110 boys in five classes to 262 boys in 12 classes. The project was put out to tender with three modular (pre-fabricated) building manufacturers and that submitted by Pinelog was accepted. Plessyngton Lodge has a red concrete tiled roof with gable features which match the appearance of Bexwyke. It is constructed using a glulam laminated frame and is clad with larch punctured with windows to provide interest on both the inside and outside of the building and provide good day lighting into the classrooms. The building has six classrooms, a multi-use room and offices for staff. The route into the classrooms is via a central corridor leading off the glazed reception/ assembly area. A modular building was specified so construction would be rapid, minimising disruption and safety hazards on a working school site. The building was manufactured at Pinelogâ€™s factory and delivered in sections before being finished after assembly and is a good example of how off-site construction can be used to provide new buildings quickly and with minimal disruption without compromising design or quality. Pinelog Limited Tel: 01629 814481 Fax: 01629 814634 email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.pinelog.co.uk
Claire Smith is the Principal of the newly rehoused Bedford Academy, it’s recently moved to a fabulous building that has the dubious achievement of being the last one constructed under the ‘Building Schools for the Future programme’, and it just beat the cut off by the incoming coalition Government. Claire was heavily involved in the build project from the outset and was able to fashion the new building to reflect the educational ethos she wanted to create. Last time I spoke with her the school grounds were a huge building site with the scruffy looking old school building right next to it, now it’s a fantastic building that is a bold statement of intent with a growing pile of rubble next to it! I wanted to know how the build was completed, the move went and what effect the new building has had on the staff and pupils. Education Magazine (EM) Last time we spoke you said that the ‘move in date’ was the 5th of November, was your prediction proved correct and if so how did it go and what do you put that down to? Claire Smith (CS) Yes, the prediction was correct! It was also very smooth from the perspective of making sure that we didn’t lose one textbook or workbook in the move. It was down to the planning and they were a very intense couple of weeks. We were working alongside the final fix people right up to the day of the move.
Some of the staff worked some very long hours under a lot of pressure; however it was all worth it.
clearing out the cupboards in the old buildings as teachers are notorious hoarders of anything that could be useful so the clear out process had started months earlier and was carried out on a grand scale.
EM Did you have any really difficult last minute issues with the building and how did you plan the actual move?
Coordinating the move took a lot of work and planning, we are organised into student groups that we call ‘Learning Villages’ and one senior person from each was charged with making sure their area of responsibility was cleared out of unwanted items. They were also responsible for making sure that the material to be moved to the new building was crated up
CS We had a few, things like sprinkler systems that dripped and toilets blocked by rubble but no major issues like locked doors with missing keys. Julie Lombardo, the Finance and Operations Director, was in control of the move and had been planning it for a long time. One of the biggest issues was 10
and correctly marked with the new room numbers. An external company then came in and did the actual move. EM Was the whole project brought in on budget? CS Yes it was, from our perspective anyway. This is because the new school is built on a fixed price contract, so the main contractor was responsible for bringing it in on time and budget. EM What effect has the new building had on the staff? CS The staff can now see the outcome of the vision in a very Education Magazine
real and tangible form. The concepts of active teaching, active learning and group work can now be applied in an environment that is designed to enable the techniques to work. Staff are beginning to experiment and work with the new spaces and technologies that the building provides and this is engendering confidence and further advances are being made all the time. The freedom to have the ability to work differently is inspirational however we will not make any great leaps forward overnight, but incremental improvements will produce the required results. EM Did the move cause a sudden surge of enthusiasm amongst the staff and has it been maintained? CS There will always be a sudden surge in this situation and the essential thing to do is to maintain the enthusiasm at a consistent level that brings the results. At the moment we are going through a very demanding time in the run up to the exams
and into a shiny new futuristic construction that would not look out of place in a really good Si-fi movie. What has been the effect on the pupils? CS We had done quite a lot of work in the lead up to help them take ownership of the building. We asked them what impression they wanted visitors to have when they walked through the door. Did they want a noisy busy environment or an ordered constructive one? The students replied they wanted the ordered constructive impression. So they fully bought into the thinking that this outcome would require staggered lunches, no littering or marks on the walls. Because the outcomes they wanted were so closely matched to ours we could create the large areas which could very easily turn into noisy and rowdy playgrounds, however they have not, mainly because that’s the outcome the students wanted. They have become proud of the school so wish to keep it as it is. A good example of this is the present situation where we cannot let
The mathematics learning village. It has classrooms off a central learning area.
yet the enthusiasm is still very much in evidence even though we are under a lot of pressure. At this point the lights in Claire’s office went out! They are controlled by movement sensors, and if the occupants sit still for a period of time, in this case 8 minutes, the lights go out to save energy! So the occupants in the office have to waive their arms around for a few moments to turn them back on again! So after a few seconds of Claire ‘Mexican waving’ the building management system restored the lights! EM You took the pupils out of a leaky sieve of a building Education Magazine
we are doing a lot of work on aspiration, this is to concentrate the student’s minds on their future. The new building and surroundings demonstrate that people believe in them so they can afford and take the risk to believe in themselves. As a result there has been a definite shift in the level of ambition the students demonstrate.
the pupils out of the building at all during the day due to the demolition of the old school taking place right next door. So all the pupils are in the building all day yet there is no evidence of them letting their excess energy loose which, for children, is quite remarkable. The grown up building has engendered grown up behaviour which will assist in the student’s education.
EM A criticism of many schools is that they allow students to consider that finishing school and exams are an aspiration in themselves rather than important preparation for the future. Was a high level of aspiration missing in the school
EM An important issue last time we spoke was that you wanted the pupils to ‘buy in’ to the style and ethos of teaching this building enables, has this happened? CS Yes it has. At the moment 11
before the Academy status and the recent move to the new building? CS We have done a lot of work to impress upon the students that this school and the education they can get here is an opportunity for them to exploit but that it must be worked for. For example, we have arranged for students to enter a lot of sports competitions, some of which the school has never taken part in due to lack of facilities. The new buildings have given us fabulous facilities so we can now train to succeed in continues overleaf u
Bedford Academy continued
was ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’ where the students utilised the new equipment to produce 3D scenery effects. This required them to think and master complex technology and solve problems and it also goes towards their official qualifications. We were
belief in their children and therefore them. The old building was a shabby leaking edifice that gave no encouragement to aspire to achieve. This one does, it opens the eyes of all local parents to the belief that their children can achieve and that the investment in them is as
This practical classroom overlooks the main auditorium.
completely unable to offer this sort of practical and intellectual stimulation before we moved in to this building. It is not just educational, it also helps the pupils to realise that they do have talent and ability and they can go on to whatever they want to be if they put in the effort. So they are more likely to invest their effort. In this way we improve their aspirations as well as their skill levels.
these competitions, some we win, some we do not, however we can now get better at the sports and that helps engender more challenging aspirations. The pupils now realise they can achieve if they work and
EM What about the effect on the community, this was an underperforming school until quite recently, so its reputation would have suffered and so children in its catchment area would have suffered some negative influence as a result.
train hard and this carries over into their attitude on life opportunities. Another good example is that we have also been able to put on very challenging theatre productions, our most recent
CS The building is as very visible icon that there is real 12
worthwhile as it is in any other community. EM As an academy you are separated from local council management, a local school was having great difficulty opening due to what was spoken of as ‘politics’ and the decision had to be referred to London. Has the council been fully supportive of this school opening? CS The council were the customer for the new building and we took over the lease. They were part of the design process and have been fully supportive and very helpful throughout. EM You have your new building, a new school ethos and people are buying into it. You are not the sort of person who sits on achievements and stagnates, what about the future? Education Magazine
and a bright future. Are you getting itchy feet?
Top pic:the main entrance, the library is on the ground floor to the left, the catering classroom is straight ahead above the reception desk. Above the main sports hall, a first for the school as the prevoius building lacked one. Above Right:The Library is on the ground floor just off the main entrance.
CS We are preparing for being a secondary school from 2014 when will be taking years 7 and 8, that will be a new development for this area. We have all the classrooms and facilities in place for that already and we are working on the staffing and structures to bring that to fruition. The overarching need is to deliver on the outcomes for students. We need to ensure that they realise the aspirations we have helped them to create. So we must ensure they can get to the universities that they wish to and we want those top results so this school is recognised as the best centre of learning in this area. Some of this is starting to happen however there is much more that can be Education Magazine
CS No, I’m not! We have done a lot here but there is far more to do to ensure that the area gets a school that enables its children to take full advantage of their education and subsequently of their lives. I have invested far more of myself in this school than in any of my previous positions and it’s given me the opportunity to realise my educational vision. Not many people get to design a school, create its ethos, design its educational policy and put them all in place! Now I have the chance to make it all work and I find that more engaging and challenging than any new project or role could be.
done to make it happen faster and more effectively. EM How much of the school will be open for the local community to use? CS We already have community staff that work evenings and weekends, so the school facilities are already being used, we are actively looking to increase local community use as we can, however demand will take a while to build up. EM The first time we spoke you told me that you had made your career in turning around failing schools. Well this isn’t a failing school any more; it’s a successful one with a brand new building
EM Lets go a few years down the road, say 5 years, I’m going to be 61, and you will be 5 years 13
older! The school will have had a full throughput and those pupils that started and finished their secondary education here. What do you want to be able to look around and see? CS Great results, I want the pupils to be successful in what they want to do and achieve what they can, Apprentices, university, skills and trades, commerce or whatever. All are worthwhile aspirations and I want the pupils who leave here to have aspired to be something ambitious and be in a position to achieve it. There is more though, I want this school to be a centre that is individual and can therefore provide something unique for the community it serves. EM Thank you for talking to me again..!
for each European country; discussions with DEFRA and Food Standards Agency (FSA) on how the regulation will be implemented are still continuing.
Food Allergy Management Europe (FAME) Ltd was established as a result of the research that Vita Whitaker completed for her Master’s degree at Sheffield Hallam and is based on her personal experiences spanning over three years, as a consequence of her following a very restricted diet for health reasons. Whilst eating out, she became acutely aware of the lack of knowledge, attitudes and inabilities of some commercial caterers to serve customers with special dietary requirements. FAME’s Aims & Objectives
Vita Whitaker (Director of Whitco Catering & Bakery Equipment Ltd) incorporated FAME on the 20th September 2012, along with:
Rapidly educate commercial catering establishments (private and public sector) in the UK (followed by the European member countries) with regards to food allergens and intolerances, so that they are can meet the European Directive. • On line training • Bespoke training
Provide products and services that will assist them through this process and beyond.
FAME Allergen Saf-T-Zone Kits, and accessories Promote the association of food allergens with the colour purple, effectively creating a safe area in commercial kitchen. Operational and management systems, including paper based and computerized tools. Consultancy and Advice.
Create a new accreditation for the Hospitality Industry that indicates the establishment’s capability to service those with food allergies and special dietary requirements that will be audited and regularly updated.
Promote the FAME brand to the food allergic community, so that they feel confident to eat out.
population is a growing minority, with the risk posed to them increasing as they are exposed to more food allergens which are not always pointed out to them by catering establishments. More people are being diagnosed with food allergies, in fact latest information predicts that by 2050, 50% of the population will have an allergy; and at the same time more people are eating out. Social changes such as the increase of two family incomes, working longer hours, and after school activities for children, has increased the use of restaurants, cafés, snack bars, as is the demand for special meals to cater for those with allergies grows; but whilst demand is rising, then so should the need for restaurant managers to be fully informed regarding food allergies and the potential for allergy related risks occurring in their business.
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Kostas Gkatzionis, Operations Director (Lecturer Birmingham University) 10 years in food industry and research Lecturer in Food Microbiology, teaching management of food safety and hygiene. Adrian Pryce, Commercial Director (Lecturer University of Northampton) 10 years in food industry, with proprietary Spanish food business Lecturer – Business School, teaching business studies and commerce.
A large proportion of allergyrelated deaths are caused by food eaten away from home and most cases involve a deliberate ingredient and poor communication. Allergic consumers do need to be proactive – but they also need help from catering establishments to make informed decisions. After several years of intensive consultation and negotiation, the European Union Food Information for Consumers Regulation (EU) No 1169/2011 was finally published on 22 November 2011. It came into force 20 days later on 13 December, and catering businesses were allowed a transition period of three years to adapt to most requirements, with the nutrition declaration becoming mandatory after five years. At this stage, the regulation does not include the implementation decisions
The training is currently being developed by a team of professionals and the University of Northampton. It is our intention to launch the on-line training in April 2013. Background Globalisation, changes in eating habits and progresses in the food industry have all contributed to the availability and variety of a wide range of foods, as a consequence the allergic 14
In brief, the new directive will hugely affect the “mass caterer” i.e. establishments such as restaurants, pubs, cafes, not excluding a vehicle or a fixed or mobile stall, staff canteens, school dining rooms, hospitals, in fact all catering enterprises in which their business is to prepare open food ready for final consumption by the public consumer. Regulation (EU) No 1169/2011 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 October 2011 on the provision of food information to consumers, replaces the previous regulations/directives in place (Appendix 21) and this regulation replaces the current requirements for the labelling of foodstuffs set out in Directive 2000/13/EC and the nutrition labelling requirements of Directive 90/496/EEC. This recent EU legislation (2011) has taken the seriousness of allergen control and has amended the existing legislation to incorporate those supplying freshly prepared, and cooked food which is served unpackaged, referred to as ‘open food’. The new requirements of this Regulation, includes the introduction of allergen labelling and information for foods sold unpackaged. For example, casein (cheese products) must have a reference to milk and tofu has to reference soya. Whilst the onus remains with open foods, many caterers also provide pre-packed foods. Here, the food allergen labelling provisions for pre-packed foods are broadly similar to the legislation already in existence, but there are new requirements regarding the presentation of this information. The fourteen allergenic ingredients stated in Regulation (EU) No 1169/2011 have to be declared in the ingredients list and under the new Regulation, this information now has to be emphasized (for example, in capital letters, bold) and must make reference to the allergenic food as set out in Annex II of the Regulation. The legislation states that these fourteen food allergens must Education Magazine
be declared whenever they are used, at any level, open food, pre-packed foods, and including alcoholic drinks. (EU) No. 1169/2011, Chapter V, ‘Voluntary Food Information’ Article 36, 3. (a), states that ingredient information will be voluntarily provided when asked for. Annex II, lists 14 allergens (Appendix 22) and the biproducts of each and adds that:“…information on the possible and unintentional presence in food of substances or products causing allergies or intolerances must be made known…” The legislation will require that catering businesses can provide allergy information to customers upon request but again, its ‘flexible’ on how information should be provided to them. Some people in the Commission think this information could be put on menus, whilst others prefer mandatory available, meaning available if consumers ask for it. The main challenge to catering businesses is how they provide allergy information for open foods, without packaging, and
foods sold loose (such as from a deli counter), or sold pre-packed for direct sale (such as bread or cakes in a bakery or sandwiches from a sandwich bar). This is already hampered by the current information provided not being clear and each EU Country being free to provide guidance and advice to businesses as they choose to interpret it, which could create mass confusion and negativity amongst some caterers, possibly making them admit defeat before attempting to comply or, worse still they choose to ignore the regulation altogether.
Following recent discussions with the FSA, Allergy UK and The Anaphylaxis Campaign, all confirm that it is down to the individual catering outlet as to whether they take a proactive role regarding how they integrate food allergens into their business or not, until it is enforced. Contact : Vita Whitaker. Food Allergy Management Europe (FAME) Ltd Tel: 01832 737205 Email: email@example.com Web: www.fameltd.eu
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Healthy Eating Week for schools The British Nutrition Foundation (BNF) will be hosting a Healthy Eating Week for all UK nurseries and schools to participate during 3-7 June 2013. The aim of the week is to further promote healthy diets (food and drink) and being more active, as well as improve the understanding of where food comes from and cooking (food and meal planning). Health of our children Healthy eating and being physically active are particularly important for children and adolescents as their diet and lifestyle influence their wellbeing, growth and development and the risk of certain diseases in the future. The latest figures from the National Child Measurement Programme (NCMP) for England show that during 2011/12, over a fifth (22.6%) of the children measured were either overweight or obese (≥85th centile of UK growth charts) in Reception year (aged 4-5 years), and this proportion was one in three (33.9%) in Year 6 (aged 10-11 years). Overweight and obese children are at an increased risk of developing various health problems including high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes, and are also more likely to become overweight or obese adults.
physical activity of being active for at least 60 minutes each day. When objective data was used, the picture was worse, with only 7% of boys and no girls aged 11 to 15 meeting the recommendations (Townsend et al. 2012). A healthy lifestyle is important for the future of our children. Through the launch of Healthy Eating Week, we aim to further support the promotion of healthy diets and physical activity in young people, with the help of teachers and other school leaders.
The nutritional requirements of children and adolescents are high in relation to their size because of the additional nutrients needed for growth, in addition to requirements for body maintenance and physical activity. Iron deficiency anaemia is associated with frequent infections, poor weight gain and delay in development. It is common in young children who are not receiving a good supply of iron from solid foods. Nearly half (46%) of teenage girls in the UK have low intakes of iron (levels below the Lower Reference Nutrient Intake), putting them at a greater risk of iron-deficiency anaemia (Bates et al. 2012). A sufficient supply of calcium and vitamin D, as well as being physically active, is important for healthy bone development. Low vitamin D status has been found amongst children in the UK, especially those of African Caribbean and South Asian origin. It may affect their bone development, causing rickets. There is some evidence of low calcium intakes amongst teenagers and one in five has low vitamin D levels. Low intakes of magnesium, selenium, potassium, zinc and vitamin A, have also been found among teenagers (Bates et al. 2012). As well as getting too little of some nutrients, most children are also eating too much saturated fat and added sugar and are not getting their 5 A DAY. Physical activity levels are low in the UK. According to the Health Survey for England in 2008, based on self-reported physical activity, only a third of boys (32%) and a quarter of girls (24%) aged 2-15 were classified as meeting the government’s recommendations for 16
Why a Healthy Eating Week? Our initial scoping work suggests that while schools may have ad hoc healthy weeks, there is no national programme of support that focuses on healthy eating via the school curriculum. Our impetus is to help support and enhance schools delivering excellent healthy eating lessons through the provision of high quality, rigorous education resources. BNF believes that the time is right to launch the Healthy Eating Week to:
support the drive to improve education about food and nutrition, as well as the health of school children, throughout the UK;
engage schools to adopt, plan and deliver healthy eating activities;
provide a point of focus, stability and support via a proven sustainable education programme, namely Food – a fact of life;
help support healthy schools initiatives throughout the UK, especially where resources have become tight and there is a lack of free high-quality materials;
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promote accurate, consistent and up-to-date information; raise the profile of food and nutrition education; become a permanent fixture during the school year; leave resources and ideas for future work supporting legacy. Education Magazine
The Foundation is in a strong position to lead on such an initiative, based on its scientific reputation and educational credibility. BNF has a long history of managing and supporting national food education projects, including the Department of Health’s Food in Schools Toolkit, the Department of Education’s (DfE) Food in Schools primary training programme and Licence to Cook. BNF developed the core food competences for the Food Standards Agency, which have also been incorporated into the European Food Framework.
Lastly, there will also be the opportunity for schools to take part in a national survey for children and young people (aged 5-16 years) about their food knowledge, behaviour and opinion. Not only will this make fascinating reading, but it will also help to develop educational tools more appropriately to meet their needs, address any misconceptions and improve different areas of knowledge.
What’s in it for schools? To make it easy for schools to participate in the week, the following is being created:
a welcome pack, giving whole school ideas, e.g. engaging with breakfast clubs, school lunch, tuck shops;
a thematic approach to the week, providing schools with two themes a day based around The eatwell plate and the 8 tips for healthy eating;
a wealth of free resources, including teachers’ guides, plans and resources to support assemblies, interactive tutorials and whiteboard activities, curriculum activities and extra-curricular activity workshops;
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Will schools get involved? To date, over 1,700 schools have signed-up to participate in Healthy Eating Week. This is encouraging and demonstrates a need for such a week to help provide focus around food issues in schools. The challenge will be to ensure that the messages and activity during the week are sustained and communicated to all those involved with the school community - Healthy Eating Week is not just for a week, it is for life.
To find out more about the week or to get involved, go to: www.healthyeatingweek.org.uk Healthy Eating Week is being developed by the British Nutrition Foundation and is supported by the Agriculture Horticulture Development Board (EBLEX, BPEX, Potato Council and DairyCo), the British Poultry Council and Seafish.
free posters, for use in classrooms and dining rooms; stickers to act as a reward for children;
Roy Ballam Education Programme Manager British Nutrition Foundation
access to live presentations during the week about health from a range of experts via our eSeminar platform;
References: Bates B, Lennox A, Prentice A et al. (2012) National Diet and Nutrition Survey Headline results from Years 1, 2 and 3 (combined) of the Rolling Programme (2008/2009 – 2010/11). Department of Health and Food Standards Agency. Townsend N, Bhatnagar P, Wrickamasinghe K et al. (2012) Physical activity statistics 2012. British Heart Foundation.
In addition, we believe that being involved is a great way to show a school’s support for healthy eating and food education to parents/ carers, pupils and the local community.
Converting academies: Coping with the health and safety minefield Thousands of schools have made or are preparing to make the transition to academy status – a move that is fraught with significant changes to how health and safety legislation is applied. Independent academies, unlike state schools, are not supported by their local education authority, meaning they have acquired unprecedented responsibilities in a number of key areas which are slipping through the net. The crux of the problem lies in that many new school management teams do not realise that once they have academy status they become responsible for their own health and safety measures, along with assuming control of a huge range of tasks including budget, curriculum, school calendar and payroll. These challenges must be addressed as soon as possible to instil best practice in health and safety across schools at an early stage. The risk of leaving this too late is that standards will drop so far that they cannot be redeemed, or worse, an accident should happen. Wayne Dunning, head of health and safety at employment law specialist ELAS, says: “Roughly one in 10 academies are thought to have poor or cobwebbed policies and procedures in place, including no up-todate fire documentation, suitable and sufficient risk assessments, health and safety inspection steps or mandatory first aid emergency courses. “Each of these has to be organised and funded by the academy and can be obtained from a provider such as ELAS, with the school’s governing body ultimately responsible for providing oversight for the arranging of these services. “There are currently 2,543 open academies with an additional 634 having since applied for academy status, meaning some 250 schools could, right now, be without a comprehensive health and safety policy. “This is surely enough of an incentive for academies to address any shortfalls in the system as quickly as possible.” Seventy-nine free schools opened in 2012 with a further 101 to follow suit this year,
meaning approximately one in five schools in England and Wales fall outside the remit of local authorities. The freedom academies have to dictate policy comes with the enormous responsibility of getting it right first time, every time and without taking any shortcuts. It is crucial that, going forward, academies understand their obligations to staff, pupils, visitors, contractors and caretakers and manage the risks of the business. If an academy’s existing risk assessments, policies, emergency plans and insurance are not ship-shape then this must be rectified before a serious incident occurs and the school is held liable for breach of legislation. Mr Dunning adds: “Both existing and converting academies have a duty to the people who both work and study there. “Risks are inherent in so many situations, ranging from inside the classroom to outside in the playground and to ignore them is extremely dangerous. “Many academy staff members have no formal health and safety training and while the buck generally stops at the most senior person in the establishment, staff can be called into question if their own failure to meet their responsibilities results in a prosecution or injury claim. “At a recent conference I was alarmed that an academy manager thought the insurance policy would cover the costs in the event of a prosecution. This is not true, if there were proceedings against the academy the costs would have to come out of its coffers and could be anything up to £20,000 or more in serious cases.” The current health and safety minefield that academies face is by no means unprecedented and Mr Dunning, a former teacher with a background in mechanical engineering, explains: “I can recall an occasion when I was asked to stand in for a teacher who was on long-term sickness due to stress. I was not inducted nor given any health and safety information in relation to the tasks I was undertaking. The role actually involved using mechanical equipment in a design technology class, where young people could lose a finger or become caught up in rotating machinery if they were not properly trained. Luckily I was aware of the risks and could steer the young people through the process but that was purely luck and simply not good enough.” There are a number of simple steps academies can take to both make the transition to academy status smooth and to 18
mitigate the risk of being held liable in the event of a prosecution taking place. These include immediately installing and reviewing a watertight health and safety policy and taking steps to identify separate risks within the establishment such as school trips, other work carried out by contractors and classes in design technology and PE. Academies also need to ensure that risk assessments are in place with sufficient emergency procedures in the event of a serious accident. These should be reviewed periodically along with any other safe working practices and first aid, fire and accident mandates. It is also essential to identify and implement adequate cover in the event of injury or illness and to provide advice and training for key personnel. Reminders should be subsequently sent out to staff so they know exactly which checks need to be carried out and when. This will provide the time and space needed to recognise the dangers in running a sizeable independent educational environment. Mr Dunning concludes: “It is academy employees who will ultimately reap the benefits of getting to grips with the rules and knowing what to do in a given situation should certainly offer peace of mind to teachers, students and parents alike. “Adhere to these golden rules and the health and safety mountain academies face should become easier to conquer.” The Employment Law Advisory Service (ELAS) is a leading provider of business support services such as health and safety, HR, payroll services, DBS checks, employment law advice and social media training to businesses both in the North West and nationally.
Why Design and Technology is vital to our economic future Midlands’s businessman Martyn Hale, who has been campaigning to retain the importance of design and technology in schools, highlights the link to the future of British invention. This country has a wonderful record of inventing things – from the jet engine to the microprocessor used in nearly all smart phones. We have long punched above our weight in innovation … and the same is true today. Computer scientist Sir Tim Berners-Lee is the man who gave us the World Wide Web while Sir Jonathan Ive designed the iPhone and iPad amongst others. Sir James Dyson brought us the bagless vacuum cleaner … there is a very long list of brilliant men and women. If talented individuals are to emerge in the future then it is vital that schools give design and technology its head. And, of course, education is
going through challenging times.
schools – in this regard academia is very much united with industry.
Education Secretary Michael Gove has embarked on something of a revolution – from a new national curriculum to making exams more exacting.
High profile and eminent industrialists have cautioned how sidelining design and technology would be a disaster.
However he has dropped plans for an Ebacc qualification in favour of retaining the GCSE system.
For example, Sir James. He recently highlighted how the subject is often a child’s only exposure to engineering – a vital component of the UK economy for wealth creation.
So the system is in flux. Overall, there is much to admire in what Mr Gove is seeking to achieve, but when it comes to design and technology we must avoid baby being thrown out with the bath water.
The Design and Technology Association agrees. It is not convinced the Government has grasped all the detail. “They are in danger of misunderstanding the nature and purpose of design and technology.” The Association fears the worst scenario would represent “a lost opportunity to engage and inspire the next generation of designers, manufacturers, technologists and engineers at a time when this country can least afford to do so”.
Council in court for ignoring asbestos threat in school Thurrock Council has been fined after admitting to failures in how it managed asbestos across its schools. Basildon Crown Court heard on 1st March 2013 that despite being made aware of asbestos concerns in a boiler room at Stifford Clays Junior School, no action was taken. A specialist contractor tasked with carrying out an asbestos survey by the council in 2004 said that dust and debris found in the boiler room containing asbestos fibres should be removed immediately under licensed conditions. However, an HSE inspection in April 2010, as part of a national initiative to ensure that local authorities understand their duties in managing asbestos across their school estate, found that nothing had been done. This was despite school staff and contractors alike regularly entering the boiler room in the intervening six year period. HSE served a Prohibition Notice on 24 April 2010 barring entry to the boiler house until it was made safe. Thurrock Council was also served with two Improvement Notices regarding the management of asbestos in its schools elsewhere in the county.
Hopefully though, the future can be much more positive. Schools and industry need to be working together. Schools should have as an objective involving themselves with local manufacturers. Both parties can get so much out of the relationship.
Our strengths may not always be in manufacturing an item, our cost base may not always permit it, but where we can lead is in inventing new and more efficient ways of manufacturing.
All this can help enthuse pupils to embrace the subject.
And that is why a grounding in design and technology at school matters.
The likes of our international competitors – the US, Germany, Japan, China and India – are all turning out technology students in their hundreds of thousands, which is why it is so essential that design and technology remain at the heart of our education system in the interest of the nation’s economic future. It is simply that critical. We have a world leading design
The dismay is shared by design and technology teachers in
If we are to remain competitive in a world, with many challengers, then we need to develop our future design capability. We must produce the men and women capable of creating the new technology that keeps jobs in the UK and drives our position as the ‘brains’ behind many of the technological innovations that we have seen in the last two decades.
Sir James has bemoaned how design and technology suffers from a bad reputation, wrongly seen as a soft subject.
The bottom line is that we need to produce young adults fit to go into the workplace. And I would strongly argue how to that end design and technology has an important part to play.
industry; we must continue to rebuild our economy by majoring on our strengths. Our standing in design and technology is recognised at home and abroad and the work done in our schools is one of the building blocks for this success.
Martyn Hale is chairman of HME Technology in Bromsgrove, Worcestershire, a leading supplier and installer of design and technology and science equipment for schools. For further information, please contact: Martyn Hale, Chairman,Tel: 01527 839000 www.hme-tech.com
Thurrock Council, of Civic Offices, New Road, Grays, Essex, was fined a total of £35,000 and ordered to pay £15,326 in costs after pleading guilty to a Regulation 10 breach of the Control of Asbestos Regulations (CAR 2006) and a breach of the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 - both in relation to failings across the school estate. The council also admitted a Regulation 11 breach of the Control of Asbestos Regulations (CAR 2006) in relation to the specific incident at Stifford Clays Junior School. After the hearing HSE inspector Samantha Thomson, said: “This was a clear example of a local Authority failing to manage asbestos across its schools for a number of years. “At Stifford Clays Junior School, the caretaker regularly worked in the boiler room with dust and debris over a period of six years. She will have been exposed to asbestos fibres and now faces an anxious wait to see if it results in any long-term health issues. “This was easily preventable. Thurrock Council was informed of the potential for exposure in 2004, yet failed to act on the knowledge until HSE’s involvement some six years later.”
Multi-format access control readers offer schools flexibility and security
ecurity in the Education sector has never been under closer scrutiny, assuring the safety of both staff and pupils. Lately there has been growing interest in using biometric access control (fingerprint readers, facial recognition etc.) but this year will see a major shake up with the implementation of the forthcoming Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 (which comes into force from 1st September 2013). This adds new legislation to the Data Protection Act 1998 on holding personal data and is especially relevant to the installation of biometric systems. Not only parents, but also pupils can object to the holding of their biometric data, which potentially puts barriers in place for a biometrics-only roll out of systems.
hilst avoiding biometrics systems altogether could be one way schools can avoid issues, there is another alternative which offers real choice. Multiformat access control readers, such as those offered by TDSi, have become a convenient reality and offer real choice. Offering both biometric, PIN and token authentication (such as MIFARE cards), multi-format readers allow users to choose the solution that suits them best. Equally, offering multi-format access control gives the school or college a flexible, highly future-proof access control solution. Investing in a multifunctional system means the schools can make the most of budget spending by providing
a flexible approach to all potential future access control needs. The school may want to continue running several methods of access, or may revert to one method in the future (assuming user consent allows) for simplicity.
egislation is put in place to uphold the safety and freedoms of the individual as well as the security of educational sites. Whilst it can sometimes be challenging to implement, TDSi multi-format readers present an elegant yet simple solution, allowing organisations to embrace the new legislation and protect security whilst offering great flexibility and choice.
www.tdsi.co.uk/ biometrics4education firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: 01202 724 999
Excellence at Cranbrook ‘Part of the Cognita group’ I returned to the UK because my Father became ill and I wanted to be near him. I was successful in obtaining the Deputy Head teachers role here and subsequently this job. I believe the Romanian job gave me the confidence to know I could make this school a real success. EM You received an Excellent Ofsted report at a time when this school was undergoing some dramatic changes. What were the highs and the lows of the report?
Ivan Mulinder is the Head teacher of Cranbrook School in Ilford. Ivan began his teaching career in Essex and spent most of his career in the UK with the exception of a few years teaching at a school in Romania . His career started at Southend Grammar school before a move to Canvey Island, then back to Southend as Head of Geography, then to Braintree as Head of Humanities. He also taught at the Anglo European School near Chelmsford before leaving the UK to work in Romania as Deputy Head. He returned from Romania to the post of Deputy Head at Cranbrook. He was subsequently put through Buckingham University by Cognita to complete a Master’s degree course in Leadership and Educational Management. After a few years the Head teacher’s role at Cranbrook became vacant and he applied and was appointed to the post.
IM The highs were that we were outstanding for behaviour, welfare health and education. The other significant high in my opinion was when I was told that had we been able to provide a few more years of ‘value added data’ we would quite probably have received an outstanding for teaching and learning as well. There were plenty of other good points too. One being a noted improvement in all areas since the last inspection. The effectiveness of the senior leadership team was also noted, particular attention was paid to its desire to improve the school and to set high standards. It was especially good to read this as it was a comment the inspectors did not have to make. I was very pleased with the report and so were all the staff.
Education Management. Your career to date has been reasonably conventional with the exception of the teaching role in Romania. What made you decide to take that position? IM The Romanian post was the first private school I worked in, I took it because I wanted a challenge. I find that they bring out the very best in me and it proved to be a three year challenge that did really did bring out the best in me! The school had 44 different nationalities and although it was an English speaking school the challenge to teach such a diverse group of people in such a different environment was considerable.
The criticisms were in two areas, one being that we could do better getting the most able
students actively involved much earlier in each lesson. They also advised we needed to do more reading across the whole school, this was commented on because our English results are slightly below our maths and science. The reason for this is that we have a sizeable proportion of our students to whom English is a second language at home. EM You have done this against the background of some major changes within the school. What were these and what was their effect? IM In the last two years we have amalgamated two schools, Cranbrook and Glenarm, we have introduced a sixth form and built a new Prep School. These, added to the challenges of providing a good education, made attaining the OFSTED result considerably more difficult. Achieving it came down to hard work and good organisation by the school management. The key is having a good team, by that I mean a partnership between the parents, the students and the teachers. I also set up a new senior leadership team who began work when I was confirmed as Head. I moved on the old leadership team as I did not consider they had the drive to achieve the changes I knew would be required. I also established a middle management team to assist in Inside the new extension
Part of the new build
implementing the changes at the same time as achieving the improved standards we required. Communicating with the parents was also a vital role. We set up a school development group where we could discuss the issues that parents had raised regarding the amalgamation, the building and the expansion. All this enabled the changes to occur with the minimum of disruption to the education of the children. Without it I would have expected a lot of negative feedback from the parents that would have made the transformation far more problematic with an inevitable negative effect on the results the students could obtain. EM In the amalgamation of the two schools, what was involved and how many students were affected? IM Cranbrook College was our name before the amalgamation and its pupils were all between Reception and up to year 11. We did not have a nursery as part of that school. Glenarm School was a preparatory school with about 100 pupils up to year 6, and included a nursery. After the amalgamation we dropped the college part of the name and became Cranbrook and so we now have the nursery, prep and grammar all under the one badge. Such amalgamations are notoriously difficult in the Education Magazine
education field, so we are proud of what we managed to achieve against such a complex process. EM You have also added a sixth form! Why did you do that and how did you go about it? IM I believe that the best form of education is a ‘through school’ one. That is where the child stays in the same school throughout their whole school education. The continuity really pays dividends in my opinion. Up to quite recently we were unable to provide this beyond GCSE’s. The education we provide here is excellent and I am determined that we will get even better at it. So providing a 6th form where we could prepare our students to get into the university of their choice is the way of completing the through school ideal and so is very important to us. My philosophy regarding the creation of this was that we should start with a small 6th form and as it grows we will bring into being the facilities needed to operate successfully at the larger size. By successful I mean that students will be getting into the universities of their choice. From an organisational point of view our present situation was achieved by utilising the facilities and teaching expertise we already had in place. So we decided to start by offering a limited range of subjects and to offer these to
our own students should they be suitable for their ambitions. We have very strong departments in English, maths and sciences in which we had spare teaching capacity. So we started by offering them as options for 6th form subjects. As a result we now have 9 students in year 12, next year we will also have a year 13 so the 6th form size will more than double. We already have the facilities and staffing to deliver results to a group of that size. Should it prove to be more popular then we will respond accordingly. This year we are adding Languages, ICT and Humanities to the subject choice so our ability to provide the ideal through school education will be available to more of our students. To help create the 6th form experience we have established a common room for them in the main building and have created a staffing post of ‘Head of 6th form’ who is responsible for its success and day to day running. EM You have 270 students now, which is not a large amount for a school, how do you see the expansion developing further? IM We have the capacity for 350 and are expanding our nursery this academic year. EM Your stated vision for the school is that ‘the staff and pupils should enjoy their time at the school’. How do you go 23
about keeping that realistic, bearing in mind all the changes that have been going on over the last two years and, with your expansion plans, would seem to be on-going? IM I do it by working from the bottom up. Our students are therefore the most important consideration. We want them to get the best education and results that they can and the most effective way of making that come about is if they are enjoying school. So if a teacher is knowledgeable, enthusiastic, highly motivated and positive then that will be communicated to the students. This means the students will understand what they are being taught and also as they are enjoying the lessons then they will pick up on the teacher’s enthusiasm and so become better at the subject. This means they get better grades and start believing in themselves so they work harder. To sum it up I want lessons to be enjoyable. So I employ enthusiastic, knowledgeable teachers who have passion to get the best out of every pupil in the school. The teacher then also enjoys teaching more so this becomes a never ending upward virtual spiral. This approach was reflected in the recent OFSTED report that noted over 90% of the students enjoyed coming to school. continues overleaf u
A technology room
An out door shelter
The front of the buildings, Its a row of large Victorian houses that have been converted.
Excellence at Cranbrook continued EM What about extracurricular activities and training? I saw a big yellow school bus with the schools name down the side parked next to the entrance? IM We do as many as we can, we arrange visits to local places of interest and go out on sports competitions. We have invested heavily in the food we provide for lunch and the facilities we serve it in. We have also set aside areas for play and quiet garden areas for children to relax. We also regularly send teachers away on training courses and have line management meetings on a weekly basis to discuss progress and issues. I feel it’s important to assist teachers to constantly develop professionally and increase their skillset. Because if a teacher is doing well then so are there students. The opposite is also true. When this happens I don’t believe it’s always necessary to put a hand around the shoulder, but when a person needs assistance its right and proper to offer it. EM Are all your teachers here qualified as teachers? IM Yes, however if I consider employing someone who was not properly qualified then I insist they study and became qualified whilst they do the job. We have one teacher going through this process at the moment. EM This is a fee paying school, do you have a selection process other than the size of the parents chequebook? IM No. We do not operate a selection process! This policy has lot to do with my state school days because I do not believe in selection. That may sound a little strange to espouse as only those who can afford the fees can send their children
here. However unlike many independent schools we do not select by academic ability. We will advise a parent against sending a child here if we do not have the specialist education the child may require. EM This school is operated and run by Cognita. A private group founded by Sir Chris Woodhead who resigned as Chief Inspector of schools in 2000 and is quoted as saying.
“ By the time I resigned as the Chief Inspector of Schools in 2000, I had come to the conclusion that no amount of state intervention was going to raise educational standards. I knew that thousands of parents across the country wanted their children to be educated in schools where academic expectations were high, where every child was known and supported as an individual, and where a good range of extra curricular activities offered all pupils the chance to discover talents they never thought they had. I wanted to give such parents the opportunity to realise their dream.” So you are a small private school with a large organisation backing it up. I’m interested to know the effect their involvement has and how long have they been running this school?
IM They first became involved here in 2005 and a lot of the credit for the schools success must be put down to the input from the Executive team. Chris Woodhead is passionate about education and I fully reflect his philosophy, I totally believe in what he stands for. The change of ownership to Cognita has resulted in the school adopting the philosophy of completely putting children’s needs first.
Children who attend this school are going to get the best results we can possibly get them and we will do it by employing passionate teachers who are very interested in their education and welfare. A core part of the ability to deliver this is our Head office and the help and expertise it can provide that helps us to deliver the results. Any advice or assistance I, or the school, might need is only a phone call away. I can obtain any expert opinion or advice I need and they visit the school regularly. Regarding the OFSTED report Cognita were very helpful with helping to enable the delivery of the children’s education and especially with the compliance requirements. The amalgamation, the 6th Form and the building work were all projects they were involved in and ones that could not have 24
been completed so successfully without. The Ofsted report is evidence of that. EM Are Cognita a profit making firm, how many schools do they run here and what sort of investment are they making in them. What do Cognita bring to a child’s education? IM Yes they are profit making, they run 43 schools in the UK and have invested £millions into them in, including over £4 million in Cranbrook. They also own and run some schools overseas. If you look at the track record of the schools since they were taken over by Cognita you will see that the results of their inspections are far better than before. They have done this because the group has a passion for good education, although there is a profit being made, there is also a good product being sold and children are getting a better education. If it were the other way around then parents would not pay and the company would go out of business. He established this company because he wanted to get good affordable education to as many as he could. We have to produce a good result for our parents, a measure of this is the OFSTED report. We want children to leave school as good members of society with a well-rounded education and a passion for life and learning. That’s also part of the results we strive for. Without good results the company will not prosper, a good education and good results go hand in hand and are the best news and outcome for our students. That is in the child’s best interests, that’s what Cognita is really all about. EM Thanks for talking to Education Magazine.
Trendâ€™s New 2013 Routing and Woodworking Catalogue Trend has just launched their new 2013 Routing and Woodworking Catalogue. The catalogue launched on March 1st, shows their complete range of router cutters, power tools, routing jigs, woodworking accessories and Trend Snappy tooling. It features over 100 new and innovative product lines, including the popular Combination Router Base and also includes all the products that have been launched by Trend in recent months. The brand leading Professional router cutter range has been extended with new bearing guided bevel trimmers, linen fold cutters, template oversize cutters and new sizes of metric diameter two flute straight cutters.
The popular CraftPro range has been enhanced with the introduction of an 82mm carbide portable planer blade and a new a range of double sided diamond sharpening stones including a credit card stone, 4 inch folding handle stone and a 6 inch bench stone. There are also new router cutters for use with 1/4 inch routers for grooving for weather seal and pile carrier. There are also a further twenty new sizes of CraftPro circular saw blades. The Trend Snappy range of over 300 Quick Change tooling products has also been extended with new screwdriver insert bits, new metric size non-marring rotating depth stop countersinks and a new eight-piece TCT masonry drill bit set. For a copy of the new 2013 Trend Catalogue, or to request further information and details of your nearest Trend Routing Centre, please call 01923 249911 or visit their website at www.trend-uk.com.
HSE:Tell ‘health and safety’ jobsworths to pull the other one! A panel set up to expose ‘health and safety’ excuses has clocked up 150 cases in its first year – helping the public fight back against jobsworths who use safety laws as a convenient ruse to ban legitimate activities. Health and Safety Executive Chair Judith Hackitt, who heads a team of experts that rules on cases when ‘health and safety’ is suspected of being cited for bogus reasons, has called for those making daft decisions to own up to their real motives. Among the more crackpot cases exposed as myths by the panel in 2013 alone were:
• • • • •
The bars that refuse to pull pints in glasses with handles The burger that could not be cooked rare The toothpicks removed from the table of a restaurant The shredded paper banned from a school fete’s lucky dip stall The cot bed that could not be made up by a hotel chamber maid
Evidence of the panel’s power emerges with another case study when, after being told the experts had ruled that banning a bubbles machine from a birthday party was health and safety humbug, the venue backed down and let the bubbles blow. Judith Hackitt said: “We never cease to be amazed by the cases we consider. Why on earth do people think that they can get away with banning pint glasses with handles, bubbles at a birthday party, or
burgers served anything other than well done, claiming they are a health and safety hazard? The reality is that people hide behind ‘health and safety’ when there are other reasons for what they’re doing – fear of being sued perhaps, or bad customer service. It’s time for them to own up to their real motives.”
“The sad fact is that while all this nonsense is being spouted, it overshadows what health and safety is really about – ensuring people return home without injury from their day’s work, every day.
David said: “I’d ordered a steak and asked for it to be cooked blue. The waiter then came back from the kitchen to say they had run out of steaks. I asked what else they had and the waiter said they had burgers, which were made from mince taken from the same steaks. I asked for it to be cooked the same way and the waiter said they were not allowed to, for health and safety reasons. I spoke to the manager, who was insistent this was the case. I said I would contact the HSE challenge panel.
The burger that could not be cooked rare David Hope, 40, from London, was told by a hotel chain that it was unable to serve burgers rare because of health and safety laws – something the panel was quick to rule out.
“We’re helping people to fight back – and I’m delighted to hear of cases of our panel making jobsworths back down and admit they’re wrong.” Employment Minister Mark Hoban, who has the Government portfolio for health and safety, said:
“I find the whole idea pompous that, rather than think about something, people just spout ‘health and safety’. When you challenge them, and they can’t justify it, they then invent something - and the easiest one to hide behind is health and safety. It’s usually nonsense. I think the sooner you can burst the bubble of pomposity and get people to live with the consequences of their actions, the better.
“I despair when I read cases like these. Health and safety is there to protect people from serious risks, not to be abused by jobsworths who stop people getting on with their lives. “Thanks to the panel we’ve already exposed 150 myths and we’ll carry on holding people to account when they give health and safety a bad name.” HSE’s Myth Busters Challenge Panel (MBCP) has its own section of the HSE website, including its terms of reference. The site also lists all the cases that they have considered. All cases referred to in this press release are taken from 2013 only – more information on these cases is provided below.
“We have to challenge this – otherwise, when it’s something that matters and when it’s something that might put someone in danger, people will be turned off and won’t pay attention because of all the trivia that gets blamed for health and safety.”
The Health and Safety Executive is Britain’s national regulator for workplace health and safety. It aims to prevent death, injury and ill health. It does so through research, information and advice, promoting training, new or revised regulations and codes of practice, and working with local authority partners by inspection, investigation and enforcement. www.hse.gov.uk 26
The shredded paper banned from a school fete’s lucky dip stall Facebook friends of Jackie O’Connell, 39, from Yateley, Hampshire, requested help in getting hold of polystyrene chips for use in the school fete’s lucky dip stall. They’d wanted to use shredded paper - the mainstay of many such stalls - but according to the school, shredded paper wasn’t an option, ‘for health and safety reasons’. Our panel told Jackie: “There are no health and safety laws which prevent the use of shredded paper or tissue paper in lucky dips. It is hard to imagine what ‘risk’ people might believe is associated with using shredded paper, but it seems a rather extreme example of risk aversion.” Jackie said: “I’d donated wrapping paper to wrap up the gifts for the lucky dip. My friends also asked for polystyrene chips, which aren’t easy to get hold of. The school said they couldn’t use shredded wrapping paper for ‘health and safety’. I thought, ‘don’t be daft, that’s stupid, what is dangerous about shredded paper?!” And the child’s birthday party where bubbles finally blew A venue banned the use of a bubbles machine at a girl’s 6th birthday party for ‘health and safety’ reasons, but then reversed the perverse decision after her disgusted dad (who asked not to be named) made contact with the Myth Busters Challenge Panel. The panel ruled: “There are no health and safety regulations which would prevent the use of a bubble machine at a party. The so-called risks which have been cited (slipping on damp floor, bubbles in eyes, etc) have been grossly exaggerated. This is a sad case of a council hiding its own corporate policy behind the health and safety excuse and preventing young children having great fun at their party.”
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Changes to the way insurance is funded Moving to academy status provides a greater degree of autonomy, including the freedom to purchase essential services from both public and private sector providers. This ability provides an academy with the opportunity to tailor services to specifically meet their unique requirements, rather than contribute to generic “buy back” services provided by the Local Authority. This ability to purchase bespoke services is a great opportunity but can be daunting, particularly in the first instance, where decisions have to be made in new areas and where there is more accountability when it comes to setting and managing their own budgets. Schools converting to academy status are in many ways becoming SME businesses almost overnight. Risk and Insurance is an area where experience within schools varies considerably from those who have bought services independently for many years to those that have always relied upon the Local Authority or a direct insurer. There is a temptation to believe that Insurance for schools can be purchased as a commodity, a packaged “one size fits all” policy, however, the potential consequences of not placing cover on the correct basis could be severe; Local Authority programmes are huge and forgiving and the need for detailed information is not always imperative. Buying insurance as an individual academy creates a greater need to spend the time trying to understand each School in detail because not doing so is a risk in itself. All organisations are faced with inherent risks, whatever size they are and whatever sector they are in. Some risks are common between organisations of a similar size and within the same sectors; however, many of the risks they face are entirely unique to the organisation concerned. Schools are a very good example of organisations that are deemed by many to have the same inherent risk issues yet, whilst that is Education Magazine
true in its broadest sense our experience shows that moving to academy status is one of the most significant structural transformations an organisation can undertake and such largescale change requires detailed attention to implementation if real and lasting improvement in pupils’ learning and achievement is to be achieved.
cover from their 2013/14 GAG, they will be able to apply for additional funding from 1 September 2013. Undoubtedly, these changes will generate further questions and guidance as the academies digest their implications. Any environment where schools are working against a budget means that it is more important than ever to access impartial, professional advice from a company with credible experience and knowledge of the Education Sector.
Examples of unique risk issues for academies could include:
• • • • • • • •
Contractual Liabilities (i.e. shared usage, Sports Halls, Catering, etc) Business Interruption Incorrect asset values Third Party site usage Misappropriation of Funds Environmental Liabilities Statutory responsibilities Construction and location
From talking to a number of Academies about their insurance requirements, Lucas Fettes & Partners understand the importance for Academies to have insurance cover in place that reflects their individual needs and not a ‘one-size fits all’ solution. We provide bespoke and impartial advice which enables us to deliver market leading insurance and risk management services.
Changes are afoot Academies are still relatively new and the landscape is constantly changing. As with all things that are evolving, new legislation is never far behind and on 13 December 2012 The Department for Education (DfE) announced that they are changing the way in which they will fund academy insurance, starting in the 2013-14 financial year.
If you are an academy or are in
If you work within the education sector and would like to subscribe to this magazine. Just contact us on
or visit the website
www.educationmagazine.co.uk the process of converting to academy status and need impartial independent advice, we would be delighted to discuss your current insurance arrangements with you. For further information on how we can help, please contact us on 0161 972 2480; email email@example.com or visit our website at www.lucasfettes.co.uk
From September 2013, Academies will no longer be able to submit an annual claim for insurance premiums and instead will receive per-pupil funding as part of their General Annual Grant (GAG). In real terms this means Academies will receive: • An amount delegated by the local authority estimated to be around £25 per pupil on average. • An additional top-up of £20 per pupil to reflect the fact that, on average, academies pay more for their insurance than maintained schools.
For some academies this will be an adequate amount to cover insurance premiums, however, for others it will mean shortfalls and the need to be topped up from the academy’s main budget. In exceptional circumstances, where academies are unable to meet the costs of securing adequate insurance 27
Keeping the Flame Alive While many educational issues are open to debate, it seems that there are two basics to which we can all subscribe – that all young people deserve the best possible education, and that the most fundamental part of this will always be the quality of teaching they receive. As with all professions, the ‘war for talent’ in teaching is intense – there are many great teachers out there, but not yet enough to fulfil the requirements of every student and every school. There are plenty of programmes designed to Yvonne Baker, Chief Executive, encourage bright graduates Myscience into teaching and many, like Teach First for instance, are achieving impressive results, but with the best will in the world, we will never come close to satisfying the needs of all young people unless we get much better at retaining and continually supporting the effective teachers that already exist within the profession, regardless of where they came from and how long they have served. So, the age old question remains: how do we stop the best teachers from leaving and how do we nurture the talent of those who are doing a good-enough job, but with the right encouragement could become truly excellent? Well, the latest research from Sheffield Hallam University seems to suggest that the time has come to look at what often drives a teacher’s enthusiasm to choose their career in the first place – a love for their subject. Evidence from the Sheffield Hallam study, which was in this case specifically looking at the effects of professional development on science teachers, shows that subject specific professional development has significant benefits for schools or colleges, and teachers themselves, particularly in the key areas of retention and career progression. It found that, for most respondents, professional development had a positive impact on their likelihood of staying in teaching, resulting from their increased knowledge, motivation and job satisfaction as a result of the experience. And even where teachers did not see a direct impact on their decisions about staying in teaching, they reported other benefits including increased enthusiasm and
validation of knowledge and practice. By providing opportunities to catch up on what’s new in science and science education, to network with scientists, engineers and other teachers and to share experiences, ideas and practice it seems that subject specific professional development can achieve something unexpected – not only do schools and colleges see increased levels of attainment in pupils, they also increase their levels of staff retention. By taking some time out to reconnect with a subject they love, teachers return to their schools or colleges reinvigorated, with renewed enthusiasm, so benefitting the young people with whom they work. In terms of career progression, the study found that teachers saw significant impacts from this subject specific professional development on job satisfaction, taking on new responsibilities and moving into new areas of work. For many, this type of CPD has been the catalyst to significant career progression, often within the same school. Take the example of Allie Denholm, now leader of KS4 achievement, at Uplands Community College in East Sussex with 1200 pupils aged 11 -18, “Attending a course for “New and Aspiring Heads of Science” meant that when I started as Head of Science I had a clear vision of how I wanted science at uplands community college to develop. I was exposed to first class science teaching and learning strategies and developed ways to lead high quality CPD for the team. In turn, the team have all experienced subject specific CPD in their own right, giving them the confidence to take on new leadership roles, for example, developing student voice through action research projects, planning and embedding new courses to improve curriculum provision and leading gifted and talented workshops. The focus on CPD within the team led to individuals leading their own sessions such as science workshops for parents and training for primary colleagues, who subsequently went on to lead training at their own primary schools. One member of the team took on a whole school teaching and learning role and another, a whole school data and student monitoring role. In addition, two other team members have been given TLR’s within science and one of the technicians 30
was promoted to team leader. This focus on developing and finding new challenges has meant the science department has retained its entire staff since 2006. However, our success with triple science and applied courses has led to new appointments, as Science at Uplands has grown and flourished.” Retaining our best teachers is, of course, a financial imperative as well as being crucial in providing all young people with the best education possible. Estimates suggest that the cost of recruiting teachers can be anything from 25 percent upwards of salary costs, which, even using modest assumptions of teacher turnover and costs per head, run into an annual bill for schools, colleges and the system as a whole of potentially hundreds of millions of pounds. Studies clearly show that a key feature of some of the world’s most well-regarded education systems is a clear focus on ongoing professional development for all teachers, including that related to their subjects. Surely therefore it is time that here in the UK we ensure that all teachers can benefit from the high quality subject led professional development support they deserve – so keeping them in the profession they love and ensuring that every young person benefits from the world-class teaching they need. Yvonne Baker, Chief Executive, Myscience National Science Learning Centre and National STEM Centre The National Science Learning Centre provides a programme of support for all those delivering Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics education in schools and colleges throughout the UK. Shown to have a measurable impact on teaching and learning, take up and achievement in science in schools, as well as improving teachers’ practice, retention and career development. Since 2008 the National Centre has delivered almost 10,000 days of funded professional development via its ENTHUSE Awards which help teaching and support staff from all UK state schools and colleges with bursaries for many of its courses. Further information is available at www. sciencelearningcentres.org.uk Education Magazine
How important are toilets in schools?
New online guidance makes it easier to understand health surveillance
Residents and visitors to the UK’s towns and cities expect to find clean, hygienic and well maintained publicly accessible toilet facilities when they shop, eat, drink or just enjoy the attractions provided. Without this crucial provision they will find somewhere else to spend their time and money.
New online guidance has been launched to make it easier for employers to understand what they need to do to check and protect their workers’ health.
However, pupils and students in education, from early years and nursery school through to college, are not covered by legislation to determine or monitor the level and standard of provision of these most basic facilities.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has published new guidelines on health surveillance, which may be needed if there is a risk that workers could be exposed to chemicals or other hazardous substances likely to harm their health.
Clean, hygienic and well maintained toilets are essential in all types of educational establishments including nurseries, primary and Reply secondary schools and colleges. Educational establishments ideally No. provide facilities for all types of users including those with physical or 20 severe and multiple learning difficulties.
Developed with industry, the clear and simple guidance makes it easier for employers to decide whether their workers need health surveillance, how to go about it and how to use the results. The guidance also makes it clearer when action is not needed, saving lower-risk businesses, such as those that are office- based, from wasting time and money.
Recognition and confirmation of good toilets in education is important to those nurseries, schools and colleges who care about their children and for twenty six years Loo of the Year Awards has been successful in raising standard of toilets throughout the UK. Any type of educational establishment’s toilets can be nominated or entered in the competition.
Past exposure to harmful substances at work is responsible for an estimated 12,000 deaths each year. Paul Beaumont, HSE’s policy lead for health surveillance, said: “We know from our work with industry that some businesses can be unclear about when health surveillance is needed and how to implement it, so are deterred from taking action.
Every entry receives an unannounced, dedicated, inspection visit. Entries gaining a bronze, silver, gold or platinum award are presented with a certificate – to help promote the Award winning facilities to pupils, staff and governors. There are Toilets in Education National and UK awards and trophies for the very best entries. The Awards are presented at a Presentation Event, which in 2013 will be held on Friday 6th December at the elegant four star St Johns Hotel in Solihull.
“Other companies could be wasting money unnecessarily by implementing it where it’s not needed. “This new guidance, developed with industry, should help take any mystery away and give employers the confidence to know whether or not health surveillance is appropriate.
Anyone can nominate any number of ‘away from home’ loos and entries can also be made online via the Awards website: www.loo. co.uk.Closing date for entries is 31st July.
Teaching schools get £10 million to boost quality of teacher training. Education Secretary Michael Gove announced on 21st March an extra £10 million for Teaching Schools so they can lead the way in training the next generation of brilliant teachers. The funding will further the Government’s ambition to drive up the number of highquality teachers entering the profession. It will also help ensure there is a wider spread of School Direct schools across England – particularly in the North and North West. At a conference of 700 outstanding head teachers, Education Secretary Michael Gove outlined his vision for a school-led system. He said the
“Ultimately, better targeted health surveillance can lead to a healthier workforce and a more productive business.” The new online guidance replaces HSG61 “Health Surveillance at Work”. It can be found online at http://www.hse. gov.uk/health-surveillance/index.htm
funding would enable Teaching Schools to: Take a greater responsibility for school improvement.
and providing support for other schools.
Empower the best schools to lead the system.
The best people to teach teachers are teachers. Schoolled systems put schools, school leaders and teachers firmly in the driving seat.
Ensure the most talented school leaders are spotted and supported to become successful head teachers.
Charlie Taylor, Chief Executive of the Teaching Agency and National College said:
The first teaching schools were set up in 2011. There are now 363 Teaching Schools in England. All Teaching School alliances (of which there are 304) receive £60,000 in their first year of operation – and will receive an additional grant of £33,000 for the next financial year (2013/14).
The people who know how best to raise standards in our schools are outstanding leaders and teachers - not officials in Whitehall. Our best schools are already well on their way to leading the system. Many of our teachers are making the most of their freedoms and are revolutionising the way they deliver initial teacher training, leadership development and school improvement.
Education Secretary Michael Gove said: Teaching Schools are leading the teaching profession. They are at the forefront of driving and delivering change. They are recruiting and training new entrants to the profession, identifying leadership potential
Teaching Schools are already making a strong contribution to teaching supply. The first
100 Teaching Schools delivered more than 10,000 initial teacher training places last year – and well over a third of all School Direct places will be delivered by Teaching School partnerships next year. The extra funding will help teaching schools build capacity for Initial Teacher Training. This could include conducting recruitment on behalf of their partnerships, or it could be used to cover the cost of senior staff involved in setting up as a School-Centred Initial Teacher Training (SCITT) school. Teaching Schools are all rated by Ofsted as ‘outstanding’ and have a strong track record of working with other schools to drive up improvement. They work with partner schools to: Ensure high-quality school-led Initial Teacher Training (ITT). Offer professional development opportunities for teachers and leaders.
NEWS News News News NEWS News NEWS News Moseley Primary School pioneers new national ‘employability’ academy. Budding business stars of tomorrow ‘Face Up’ to business stars of today. Primary school children from Moor Green Primary School in Moseley ‘faced up’ to top
business stars, the former Schools Minister Lord Knight of Weymouth and national business representatives to celebrate the
New wave of approved UTCs will take total to 45 On 28 march the Government announced that 13 new University Technical Colleges are set to open from September 2014 – backed by more than 140 major employers and universities. th
The projects have all been approved to move to pre-opening stage and are spread across England. Each will specialise in demanding technical subjects, including engineering, digital technologies and biomedical science. More than 8000 young people will study at them. They will be taught core GCSEs alongside vocational qualifications, and will leave with the technical knowledge and
school becoming the first ‘employabilitythemed’ Academy School in the UK. Children donned face masks representing business stars of today such as Lord Alan Sugar, Sir Richard Branson and ‘Dragons’ Hilary Devey, Deborah Meadon and Peter Jones to illustrate the school’s focus on equipping young people to succeed in the world of work. All of HTI’s Academies will place employability at the heart of the curriculum offer, using leading local and national businesses in all aspects of teaching and learning. The event marks the strong two year progress and subsequent transition of the 268-pupil school from relying on direct Local Authority Support to being granted official Academy status in 2013 Moor Green Primary is the first of 26 planned Academies designed to blend educational excellence and employability sponsored by HTI (Heads, Teachers & Industry) Education Trust. The Trust Board includes the CBI and other leading and experienced education and business representatives and is chaired by former education Minister Lord Knight of Weymouth. Lord Knight said: “Today, almost one million young people in the UK cannot find work and with each year that
skills, underpinned by academic rigour, that industry demands. These 13 UTCs join 27 that are already preparing to open and five currently open. Together they will allow around 27,500 students to train as the engineers, scientists and technicians of the future. Schools Minister Lord Nash said: I am delighted with the very strong field of UTC proposals we are progressing to the next stage. The growing number of top employers and universities involved in UTCs underlines the importance of making rigorous technical education an option for young people. UTCs have the same freedoms as Free Schools and Academies. This allows them to
passes the challenge for young people seeking a rewarding career only becomes greater. As an HTI Academy, Moor Green Primary will be a pioneer for our work with an unrelenting focus on educational achievement AND employability skills, so it can play an important role in helping turn this situation around.” Also attending: Katja Hall - Chief Policy Director, CBI and member of HTI Education Trust Board, Carol Ions and Alison Middleton – Department for Education, Anne Evans OBE and Mike Giddings, Executive President and CEO of HTI, Ruth Garner, Chair of Governors, Moor Green Primary school This trust allows those schools that do not want to set up and procure their own services to join similar minded schools that are part of the HTI family of schools. The HTI Trust acts in a way similar to that of a LA, providing services and having responsibility to the DfE for the school’s performance. The cost of this model to a school can be as little as 50% of the additional funds a school would receive when it converts to an academy. Schools seeking more information can call 02476 410104 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
be innovative in, for instance, in how they may choose to employ engineers with an industry background alongside qualified teachers; how they develop and deliver innovative projects for pupils; and how they extend the school year and day to prepare students for the world of work. In addition to the 13 approved today, five UTCs are already open and a further 27 are working to open either this September or September 2014. The Department has recently published on its website arrangements for inviting the next wave of applications. There will be two UTC application rounds a year – the next ones being in September 2013 and spring 2014. Guidance and application forms for the next round will be published in May 2013.
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Members of staff at a nursery in Cotteridge, Birmingham have made learning hand hygiene skills easy and fun for its children. Early Learners Nursery have been using a KiddiSynk which is manufactured by TEAL – specialist’s in developing portable warm water hand wash units for the education sector. The KiddiSynk enables children to wash their hands Reply No. anytime, anywhere as it does not require access to mains 21 water or drainage. “The KiddiSynk enables the children to wash their hands in the same room as they play, or outside if that’s where we are,” says Lynn Trew, manager at Early Learners Nursery. “Hand hygiene is now incorporated as part of their play routine, and we can focus on other aspects of a child’s development.” TEAL has developed a range of support materials to make learning fun, including certificates, colouring templates and songs.
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For more information on the Kiddiwash range visit: www.kiddiwash.com
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Only top-quality vocational courses to count in post-16 league tables Thousands of vocational courses which do not on their own lead to jobs, further study or university could be dropped from college and school sixth-form performance tables as part of reforms to raise education standards, Skills Minister Matthew Hancock announced on 7th March. Around 90 per cent of nearly 4,000 Level 3 vocational courses may no longer count in the tables. The move follows Professor Alison Wolf’s ground-breaking report into vocational education, in which she said that “at least 350,000 young people in a given 16-19 cohort are poorly served by current arrangements. Their programmes and experiences fail to promote progression into either stable, paid employment or higher level education and training in a consistent or an effective way.” There has also been an explosion in the number of young people studying vocational qualifications between the ages of 16 and 19.
The proportion of 16- to 19-year-olds studying at Level 3 taking at least one of the post-16 Level 3 vocational courses available rose from 30 per cent in 2008 to 48 per cent in 2012 – from 101,000 students to around 185,000.
Over 9,000 pupils to benefit from new and improved school buildings Over 9,000 pupils in 15 schools will benefit from new and renovated school buildings as the Department for Education announced the first 2 successful bidders for the £2.4 billion Priority School Building programme. Sir Robert McAlpine Ltd has been successful in its bid for a contract for the first group of schools in the north-east, Yorkshire and Humberside and Wates Construction Ltd has successfully bid for a contract in Coventry.
The number of young people aged 16 to 19 studying vocational courses rose 196 per cent between 1995 and 2010. In comparison, the number of those studying A levels in the same period rose 21 per cent.
The reforms are outlined in a consultation launched by the Department for Education. They would be phased in from 2014, and follow similar action to overhaul school league tables for 16-year-olds. Young people aged 16 to 19 would still be able to take any qualification accredited for use by Ofqual, even if they are dropped from the tables. Some of these small courses are beneficial if taken alongside a larger, highquality qualification which has good content and which directly progresses young people. Matthew Hancock said: ‘For vocational education to be valued and held in high esteem we must be uncompromising about its quality. Vocational qualifications must be stretching and strong. The proposals would ensure that only large qualifications which meet a quality bar will count in the performance tables. The changes would also mean that qualifications which lead into skilled occupations – either directly or through higher education – would be reported separately from those which are more general in nature. Academic achievement would also be reported separately.’ ‘Our proposals will have two very positive effects. First, it will end the current perverse
West Cornforth Primary School King James I Academy
Hill Top Specialist Arts College
Fox Hill Primary School Prince Edward Primary School
Ian Ramsey Church of England School
Usworth Grange Primary School
East Riding, Yorkshire
Goole High School ‹An Academy of Excellence›
The north-east contract is worth approximately £64 million and it means that 9 schools (4 primary, 3 secondary and 2 special) across Durham, Gateshead, Sheffield, Stockton on Tees, Sunderland and East Riding serving 5,495 pupils will be completely rebuilt or refurbished. The schools are:
Wates Construction Ltd has been successful in its bid for the £36 million contract in Coventry. This means that more than 3,675 pupils (including nursery places) in 4 primaries, 1 secondary, and 1 special school will be taught in new buildings. This contract is the first of 2 batches planned for the Midlands.
The schools, all in Coventry, are:
Durham Trinity School and Sports College
Whitmore Park Primary St Thomas More Catholic Primary 33
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incentives – every student will have to study a high-quality qualification of substantial size if their college or school sixth form is to get credit in the league tables. Secondly, it will be clear which qualifications will progress young people into skilled occupations and which are more general in nature. At the moment too many students are spending time working hard but getting nowhere. This is not their fault. The vocational courses they are taking have limited value in the jobs market. But because they count equally in the performance tables, they appear to have the same value. This is not true. Mr Hancock said that alongside the promotion of apprenticeships, the reforms would not only strengthen vocational education but also boost the economy by giving young people the skills to fill muchneeded shortages in key occupations. This will help Britain compete in the global race.’ Engineering organisations – led by the Royal Academy of Engineering (RAE) – are working to develop four new qualifications which prepare students for careers in the engineering sector and meeting demands of the sector. The consultation on vocational qualifications for 16- to 19-year-olds can be read on the Department’s website. The Technical Guidance for Awarding Organisations - Qualifications for 14-16-yearolds can be read on the Department’s website.
• • • •
Wyken Croft Primary Richard Lee Primary Ernesford Grange Community Alice Stevens Special School.
Schools Minister David Laws said: We are delighted to confirm the first two contractors who will work with us on our £2.4 billion Priority School Building programme. This programme will provide new or refurbished school buildings for the children being educated in those schools that are in the very worst condition. The selected contractors will now work with the Education Funding Agency (EFA) and the schools to develop detailed designs and submit planning proposals for each scheme before building work begins in the spring. Good progress is being made on the remaining 6 capital funded batches. The contractors on the EFA Contractors’ Framework will be invited to tender for these batches in January and February. The 261 schools to be rebuilt or renovated under the Priority Schools Building programme were announced in May 2012 and are available on the Department’s website.
Making the most of the consultancy sector With the Government’s catch-up premium offering further opportunity for schools to purchase extra resource, Richard Riddell of Exam Confidence looks at the issues for those engaging outside support One would be forgiven for having missed it – there’s been a fair bit going on elsewhere - but January saw the first allocation of funds for the so-called “catch-up premium”, announced in September last year. Launched from the office of the Deputy Prime Minister, the initiative has seen secondary state schools in England receiving £500 for each Year 7 pupil who did not reach expected levels in literacy and maths on leaving primary school. Its introduction was rather drowned out by other, admittedly more eye-catching education headlines. Even at the quietest of moments, though, it might not have prompted too much excitement. Extra funding to support struggling pupils seems an entirely sensible investment. Indeed, its introduction is in line with recent Ofsted recommendations, suggesting that more is needed for struggling pupils arriving at secondary school.
Legitimate concerns? We, for one, are entirely familiar with those concerns. Exam Confidence has, over the last three years, worked with schools across the UK, in both the state and private sector, providing individual tuition, group support and teacher training. Over that period we’ve had to address understandable concerns from headteachers, governors and other senior decision makers, all anxious not to upset a balance that suits the expectations of students as well as the needs and sensitivities of teaching staff. Perhaps most fundamental, though, is the question of value. What can an outside provider offer that the permanent staff cannot? And, equally importantly, how can that value be measured? Inevitably, an answer to the first of those questions will depend on the school concerned, but in our experience, significant value has been added in several ways. Firstly, educational agencies offer support tailored to the specific needs of the school, class or individual concerned. If the immediate issue is impending exams then reputable providers will have scope to offer qualified teachers who work, for a good deal of their time, on exam technique and revision. The best providers will equip their teachers with additional training and insight into exam technique and requirements. If the concern is over motivation and work ethic, then appropriate individuals should be provided to tackle that exact issue. Additional support is not simply another pair of hands at the whiteboard. Beyond this, external providers offer a fresh approach. Long-term student teacher relationships can prove hugely positive for learning and development but there may be times when a new angle is just as beneficial. For the majority of schools we work with, we’re not looking to put right teaching methods that are wrong. Instead, we’re looking to re-excite and energise students with a new approach.
I’d wager, though, that we’ve not yet seen the end of a debate concerning this latest introduction, and its forebear, the “pupil premium”. Fundamentally, these pieces of legislation further empower schools to make their own choices with regard to spending, and one upshot of that is the potential to involve the private sector. This isn’t an entirely new scenario. Statefunded schools have for some time looked to private providers – be they private tutors or agencies offering targeted short-term support. Recent initiatives, though, are likely to put the budgetary decisions of schools in the spotlight and it’s highly likely that old arguments over private sector involvement in state-funded schools will re-surface.
In terms of measuring value, again, one needs to be specific to the school concerned and the solutions provided. Clearly, exam results are the ultimate measure but value can be more easily marked in some instances than others. A considerable amount of the work we do involves supporting groups that are underperforming with a view to improving on previously attained grades in upcoming exams. Of course, measuring impact here is relatively straightforward. We routinely compare exam results before and after our involvement and we, and the schools concerned, are very happy with the impact demonstrated to date. Where exam result comparisons are less immediately obvious – for example if a student or group of students require catchup support at the outset of a new course – then a specific framework for reporting 34
results should be agreed between the school and the provider. There are clearly no fixed rules and schools need to be as clear as possible on their expectations. Providers should be equally keen to agree a structure that sees them demonstrate their value. Another issue commonly raised regards the status of teachers being supported. The concern is that the maths, English, or science teacher of the group concerned is undermined – effectively declared unable to cope. It’s an understandable concern and one we spend a good deal of time working through with our client schools. Clearly, there’s a need for strong, positive communication. In the vast majority of cases, the key message is that providers are working with existing staff and not in place of them. Even the most diligent, high performing teacher will face periods when their workload is unmanageable, or when a specific challenge is suitably new to require extra help. Ultimately, the interests of the permanent staff and those contracted on a more short-term basis are entirely aligned. Both parties are concerned for students to achieve the best results possible. It’s worth noting, also, that a significant number of requests for support originate from teachers themselves as opposed to senior decision makers. These teachers don’t see the introduction of outside support as damaging to their own status and nor, when the arrangement is communicated correctly, should others. Who to trust Finally, it’s worth addressing concerns over legitimacy, credibility, and regulation. The education consultancy sector is growing rapidly but, in its current form, remains young. A number of organisations offer the opportunity for agencies and consultants to demonstrate credibility with certification and quality assurance. Membership of these bodies, and adherence to their codes of practice, though, remains voluntary and while individual teachers may easily demonstrate qualifications, agencies themselves, with no need for regulatory approval, face minimal barriers to entry into the market. Education Magazine
The upshot has been a rapid growth in the supply of tutors, revision course providers and self-professed educational consultants. As with any relatively un-regulated industry, the quality on offer will vary considerably from one provider to the next and schools must invest time in the necessary due diligence to establish the best solution for their requirements. Common-sense procedures, such as asking for references, testimonials, and demonstrations of previous successes should all apply. Schools should also question the experience and qualification of individual teachers, without relying purely on the brand credibility of the agency concerned. Credible providers should be more than happy to provide the information required. Beyond a demonstration of previous work, providers should show a commitment to developing a long-term working relationship with the school concerned. An issue for any publicly funded institution looking for private support is the risk of a short-term, profitdriven approach on the part of the outside provider. That risk is mitigated if both sides are committed to a long-term partnership where the interests of all are entirely in sync. Scan the comment sections of any article covering the ‘pupil premium’ or ‘catch-up
£150m Olympic legacy boost for primary school sport in England Primary school sport is set to be transformed thanks to a £150 million-a-year boost that will improve coaching for the youngest pupils and inspire the Olympic and Paralympic stars of the future, the Prime Minister announced on 16th March. London 2012 gave Britain a once in a lifetime opportunity to inspire a nation to enjoy sport and the Government wants to embed that into the school day from an early age. The new sports funding aims to improve the quality of provision in every state primary school in England. This means: • A lump sum for each school, with a perpupil top-up. A typical primary school with 250 primary aged pupils would receive £9,250 per year. This is the equivalent of around two days a week of a primary teacher or a coach’s time enough to make sure every pupil in the school can do sport with a specialist. • ‘Ring-fenced’ funding – only to be spent on sport - will go directly into the hands of heads and teachers who will decide what is best for their children’s needs. This could vary from specialist coaching and teacher training to dedicated sports programmes, Change4Life sport clubs and support for after-school or weekend competitions. Education Magazine
What’s more, if providers can demonstrate a commitment to working in long-term partnership with schools, then those concerns should be addressed. Whenever we start speaking with schools we’re bombarded with a list of very reasonable questions. We’re confident, though, that we have the right answers. “Richard Riddell founded Exam Confidence in 2010, having taught economics and business studies to GCSE and A-level. In teaching those subjects he recognised the need for academic coaching focused on helping students demonstrate their knowledge through good exam technique. Exam Confidence has now worked with over 3,000 students across the UK, individually, as part of revision courses and in partnership with secondary schools in the private and state sector.
premium’ and you’ll likely see a good number of contributions bemoaning profit-driven private sector involvement. Whilst concerns are understandable, there is clear value in schools having the flexibility to engage high quality resources that tackle specific needs.
A greater role for Britain’s best sporting and voluntary organisations, including National Governing Bodies who will increase the specialist coaching and skills development on offer for primary schools. Tougher assessment of sport provision via Ofsted to ensure the funding is bringing the maximum benefit for all pupils, with schools held to account for how they spend the money. Sport England investing £1.5 million a year of lottery funding through the County Sport partnerships to help Primary Schools link up with local sports coaches, clubs and sports governing bodies. New provision as part of initial teacher training to produce a cadre of primary teachers with a particular specialism in PE. This is being developed in conjunction with sporting bodies and will start with a pilot covering 120 primary teachers, with the first of these beginning work in schools in September 2013. The Prime Minister David Cameron said: The Olympic and Paralympic Games marked an incredible year for this country and I will always be proud that we showed the world what Britain can do.
I want to ensure the Games count for the future too and that means capitalising on the inspiration young people 35
Richard is now primarily responsible for the strategic development of Exam Confidence. His work involves building partnerships with schools but he teaches – either one-on-one or within the revision courses – wherever possible.” For more information visit www. examconfidence.co.uk/
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took from what they saw during those summer months. With this new approach to sport, we can create a culture in our schools that encourages all children to be active and enjoy sport, and helps foster the aspirations of future Olympians and Paralympians. Whether that is the future Jessica Ennis, Ellie Simmonds or Mo Farah, or someone who will simply learn to love sport and exercise for a lifetime, this investment will benefit a whole generation of children for many years to come. There have been wide-spread calls for an investment to made into primary school sport and the announcement was welcomed by sports and education groups, and leading figures in the world of sport. With funding from Sport England sports governing bodies will provide a multi-sport satellite club in every secondary school. These will be available to every secondary school pupil on top of the sport and PE offer they receive as part of the curriculum. Some are being created especially to appeal to girls who often give up on sport when they leave school. Primary school years are crucial to tackling obesity and physical inactivity. One in three children leaving primary school are overweight or obese. Regular physical activity, not just competitive sport, is proven to reduce the risk of more than 20 chronic conditions including heart disease, cancer, diabetes and obesity.