Leader magazineASCL - Association of School and College Leaders

In the news

Stubborn teachers

ASCL pre-released a chapter from Achieving More Together about school support foundations, in the week after Christmas, to start to generate interest in the book's publication in January.

The chapter highlighted the government's own research which outlined the most effective strategies used by support federations to turn around weaker schools (see news item, left).

The story was picked up in the Guardian, Daily Mail and about a dozen of the regional papers, although almost all went with the Press Association's version of the story which led with 'call to sack stubborn teachers' who resist changes to teaching and learning - just one of many possibilities listed in the report.

The BBC online article, which led with 'failing schools need teamwork', presented a more representative view of the story.

Cookery lessons

In response to the government's announcement of mandatory cookery lessons for 11-14 year-olds, ASCL had this response: "Just six months ago, ministers promised heads greater flexibility in the curriculum for 11 to 14 year olds.

"More decisions about what to teach would be made at school level, they said. Now they have fallen at the first fence, creating another entitlement and more compulsion for this age group."

While not against cookery lessons in themselves, ASCL's objections are to the level of government micromanagement.

ASCL's views were reported in the Times, Daily Telegraph, Daily Mail, Daily Express and Metro.

League tables

To celebrate the publication of yet another round of GCSE results in early January, John Dunford wrote an opinion column in the Independent making the case for abandoning league tables in their current form.

"There are, of course, lies, damn lies and statistics - and league tables come into all three categories," he said.

"Whatever government ministers want to emphasise as the flavour of the month is now given its own column in the league table."

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