Ofsted pilot abolishes individual lesson grades
Teachers and lecturers will not be graded individually for the quality of their teaching under a new pilot from Ofsted. After the inspectorate last week announced a similar trial for schools in the Midlands, national director for further education and skills Lorna Fitzjohn confirmed on Monday that comparable work would be carried out in the FE sector. Rather than giving every teacher a grade on each individual lesson observation form, inspectors will instead give detailed feedback about "what is going well and what is going less well". Ofsted said it hoped the move would reduce "ineffective and unnecessary lesson observation". The new approach could eventually be rolled out across the country.
DfE could force colleges to display post-16 data
Colleges and schools could be forced to display post-16 performance data on their websites under plans put forward by the Department for Education. The proposals specify that providers should reveal information about student progress, attainment and retention, as well as destination data and, for students without at least a grade C at 16, progress made in English and maths. The suggested design shows how an institution performs against national figures. If approved, data displays will be mandatory, with institutions under threat of losing their funding if they fail to comply. The consultation period ends on 4 July.
Teaching must keep up with jobs, says EU expert
Educational reform must match the pace of change in the labour market to make it easier for young people to move between school and work, according to the European Union's vocational education chief. James Calleja, head of Cedefop, the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training, said that EU countries must invest heavily in early education so that young people had developed the right skills for work by the time they left school.
Croydon pupils are on the ball for employability
Students at a South London college are being given the chance to work at a Premier League football club thanks to a partnership with a local club. Crystal Palace is offering opportunities to students at Croydon College and is currently advertising for roles in retail and hospitality, as well as searching for new kitchen and bar staff. The scheme is part of the college's employability initiative, in which it works with a wide range of employers to offer students access to work experience, voluntary placements, paid employment opportunities and apprenticeships.
Double triumph for prison tutor
A pioneering prison tutor scooped two prestigious prizes at the City amp; Guilds Lion Awards last week. During the ceremony at London's Roundhouse, Andrew Dennis claimed the Outstanding Achiever of the Year and Tutor of the Year gongs in recognition of his efforts working for the prison service over the past 23 years. Mr Dennis used his background as an expert craftsman to open a "brickshop" at HMP Maidstone in 2006, with the aim of helping prisoners to develop both their construction and employability skills. Judges were impressed by the course's 90 per cent retention and achievement rate, as well as Mr Dennis' commitment to help his learners "overcome any previous negative educational experiences and exceed their own expectations".