Headlines from the world of education and schools work:
- Parents to get budgets to spend on special needs children: Parents will be given a personal budget to spend on services such as home-based education and equipment including laptops and wheelchairs for their children with special education needs, under proposals intended to give greater control to families. But campaigners warn that cuts to council budgets will sharply reduce the services available for parents to choose from.
- Ofsted: standards slide at quarter of schools: Almost a quarter of schools are getting worse as tough new Government inspections expose falling standards, figures suggest.
- Archbishop: omission of RE from English Baccalaureate ‘indefensible’: The Archbishop of Westminster has attacked decision over RE.
- History ‘marginalised’ in schools, says Ofsted: Children’s understanding of the past is being undermined by poor history teaching and crowded timetables, Government inspectors warned
- Parents who shun fairytales ‘miss chance to teach children morality’: Politically correct parents who shun traditional fairy tales are missing the chance to teach their children right from wrong, an education expert claims.
- Girls are smarter than boys when it comes to spending at university – survey finds: The Student Loans Company said that, on average, girls spend nearly £1,500 less than boys every year at university. Beer is the biggest difference – with boys clocking up £76 a month in pubs and clubs compared to £46 spent by girls. They also spend much more heavily on food (£76 compared to £60) every month, and twice as much on sports (£25 versus £14). The survey debunks a number of gender stereotypes around spending, revealing that on average males at university spend £34 a month on clothes compared to the £31 spent by females. They also spend more on restaurants – £37 a month compared to £29, and more on their phones, £29 compared to £22. But the SLC says that part of the reason why females spend less than males at college is that they are often better at shopping around for the best deals on a range of goods from gas and electricity to phones and broadband.
- State school pupils ‘being put in for soft A-level options’: Thousands of state school pupils are being put in for “soft” options at A-level to boost their school’s league table ranking.
- England’s newer universities face biggest cuts as teaching budgets slashed: Official figures show £940m cuts will target teaching colleges. All but five universities in England are to have their funding cut next year, according to official figures, which show that newer universities focused on teaching will be worst affected.