News at a glance

17th October 2014 at 01:00

Morgan warns of repeat of Trojan Horse scandal

Britain could face repeats of the Birmingham Trojan Horse scandal where groups attempt to impose their ideologies on schools, the education secretary warned this week. In her first appearance before the Commons Education Select Committee, Nicky Morgan said two teachers from schools at the centre of the scandal had been barred from the classroom, while the conduct of further staff was being investigated. Earlier this year, independent reports on five Birmingham schools found that pupils were being exposed to religious extremism - for example, being shown a jihadi video and taking part in "anti-Western chanting". "We must not be shy about talking about fundamental British values," Ms Morgan said. "If not, other people will attempt to get their ideologies across."

Schools urged to publish science uptake of girls

Schools should be forced to publish statistics on the number of girls who study the sciences up to and beyond GCSE, in a bid to increase take-up of the subjects, a report says. The paper, published by the Campaign for Science and Engineering, says the progress and success of girls in the sciences should be measured by Ofsted. Dr Sarah Main, director of CaSE, said: "There are things that can be done at a central government level and one of them is influencing what Ofsted measures, because it is a huge driver of behaviour. If you do put in these measures then you will have a huge impact on outcomes."

Charity calls for end to careers advice `lottery'

The National Careers Service - which provides telephone and web-based guidance to schools - should offer face-to-face advice from specialist careers advisers, the Sutton Trust has said. This would help to end the "postcode lottery" that the charity believes is hindering social mobility. The Sutton Trust's new report, Advancing Ambitions (which will be available at, shows that where schools provide good-quality careers guidance there are improvements in GCSE results, attendance and access to leading universities. In 2011, the coalition government placed a legal duty on schools and colleges to provide careers advice. But the report says this was accompanied by "weak statutory guidance and little help or support", which has led to patchy provision, with some pupils receiving better advice than others.

Alicia Keys leads protest for Nigeria girls

US pop star Alicia Keys has led a protest to highlight the plight of the Nigerian schoolgirls kidnapped from their boarding school in Chibok by Islamist militants. Keys led chanting and singing outside the Nigerian consulate in New York City on Tuesday, to mark the six-month anniversary of the girls being taken by Boko Haram. She complained to reporters that there had "not been progress" in the search for the girls, whose disappearance sparked worldwide outrage. A global Twitter campaign, Bring Back Our Girls, garnered the support of high-profile figures such as First Lady Michelle Obama and education campaigner Malala Yousafzai, but 219 girls are still missing.

Australian curriculum neglects West, review says

The national school curriculum in Australia is neglecting the importance of Western civilisation, according to a government review. The report says that the importance of "Judeo-Christian" heritage has been underplayed and the influence of Western civilisation in the development of the country is "often presented in a negative light, ignoring the positives". The opposite is the case when dealing with indigenous history, it claims.


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