Ofsted to reveal new inspection regime
Her Majesty's Chief Inspector Sir Michael Wilshaw is expected to outline Ofsted's new inspection regime in a major speech on Monday. The announcement will include plans to introduce a common inspection framework for all providers, with shorter, more frequent inspections. From September, the watchdog will visit schools and colleges previously judged "good" every three years to look for signs of decline. Sir Michael is also expected to spell out Ofsted's latest efforts to bring all inspectors in-house. But the huge challenge of convincing schools that the changes will be meaningful was underlined earlier this week. In a widely shared blog on the TES website, Geoff Barton, headteacher of King Edward VI School in Suffolk, reveals tales of Ofsted-related disillusionment and despair shared by headteachers and even an HMI (bit.lyOfstedAnguish).
Gibb unrepentant as EBac `crowds out' the arts
Schools minister Nick Gibb was last night expected to hit back against critics who argue that the government's emphasis on academic subjects is "crowding out" the arts. "I make no apology for protecting space for the English Baccalaureate subjects wherever possible," he was due to say in a speech in London. The Department for Education would soon be setting out details of ministers' plan to make EBac subjects compulsory for all secondary pupils, Mr Gibb was expected to add, pledging that schools would be given "adequate lead-in time" to prepare for the changes.
Physical activity fails to boost learning, study finds
Introducing short bursts of physical activity into lessons does not improve academic achievement, research suggests. A University of Bristol study for the Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) finds that literacy and numeracy attainment failed to improve among children taking part in a US programme called Physically Active Lessons. Although the EEF said further trials were necessary, initial evidence for the benefits of vigorous activity during lessons was "weak and mixed". The tests did suggest, however, that girls might benefit more than boys. Read the report at www.educationendowmentfoundation.org.uk
Leadership body will confront headteacher shortage
A looming shortage of headteachers could be eased by a new leadership foundation that is being established to help schools with succession planning after leaders retire or move jobs. The NAHT headteachers' union and the Association of School and College Leaders have collaborated with the National Governors' Association to create the Foundation for Leadership in Education, which will design leadership courses and assess candidates to develop the next generation of headteachers, governors and school business managers. The body will establish a network of opportunities for potential leaders and provide CPD for governors.
Ditch `ineffective' Inset days, schools told
One-off teacher training days - known as Inset days - should be dropped, according to a major report published this week. On-the-job training courses need to last for at least two terms, or even a year, in order to be effective, an international research review finds (see tdtrust.orgaboutdgt). "The duration and rhythm of effective CPD support requires a longer-term focus - at least two terms to a year or longer is most effective, with follow-up, consolidation and support activities built in," Developing Great Teaching concludes. The report was commissioned by the Teacher Development Trust, with support from TES Global, the parent company of TES.