The Wolf Report

A review has taken place – focusing on the future of vocational education

To read the report, you can access and download it here

From what I can tell, the main findings appear to be:

  • 80% of time should be spent on ‘core’ subjects (up until the age of 16) – which I take to mean the ones included in the EBacc (inc Geography and History)
  • Too many courses are not suitable to lead youngsters into higher education or a job
  • Vocational qualifications should not be included in school league tables (some at the moment are the equivalent of 4 GCSE grades)
  • Schools should no longer have a duty to provide work experience for students
  • Students should stick to ‘academic subjects’ up until the age of 16
  • Colleges should be able to take students from the age of 14

A Personal view:
If this will stop some schools offering inappropriate vocational courses and pushing students into them in order to artificially inflate their 5*A-C grade percentage in the league tables, rather than encouraging them down the vocational route because it is the best route for the individual student – it must be seen as a good thing!

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The Diploma – Phase 4 Line of Learning Consultation Event

I have spent the day today at the QCA Phase 4 Line of Learning Criteria Consultation Event in Bristol, to find out a bit more about the new Humanities and Social Sciences Diploma which will be delivered from September 2011.

It was a very interesting day. The response from those taking part in the consultation was very positive. There were a variety of people represented at the Humanities and Social Sciences sessions. These included teachers, employers and university lecturers. we managed to get a good idea of what the course will involve and the way in which it might be delivered.

The Humanities and Social Sciences Diploma (I’m going to refer to it as HSS Diploma to save time!) has a very large disciplinary footprint. There are a total of 16 individual subject areas included, from Geography and History, to Classics and Psychology. However, once we delved a little deeper, we realised that this should actually mean that we can use this as our USP. Many students may be wary of narrowing their future career options with some of the Phase 1 and 2 diplomas. However, with the HSS diploma, they will be getting a broad education and developing the skills universities and employers say are currently missing.

The final details on the Line of Learning Statement for HSS will be available soon at:
http://www.humanitiesdiploma.co.uk/

If you would like you views heard, you can also take part in the consultation process online, by filling in a questionaire at:
http://www.qca.org.uk/qca_22196.aspx

PLTS posters

I don’t know about you, but I have found the PLTS posters difficult to use with students. I want to be able to refer to them as much as possible and make sure they are embedded in lessons. As a result, I have created a number of posters for display in the classroom. They range from single PLTS for display beside the aim on the whiteboard, to posters outlining the PLTS themselves and what they mean. See what you think. Hopefully, you and your students will find them useful.

For access to the range of PLTS posters I have produced, click on the scribd icon on the left hand side of the screen in the ‘My Documents’ section.

Please note that the layout of some of the posters looks a little jumbled or covers more than one page on screen. However, once downloaded, it sorts itself out.

Alternatively, click here

Schools within schools – a way to implement KS3 changes?

Bishop’s Park College in Clacton-on-Sea is divided into three schools, with school leaders, staff and students all benefiting from a personalised approach.

Headteacher Mike Davies explains how this approach allows staff to get to know their pupils, with each small school teaching a maximum of 300 students.

KS3 pupils work on themed projects for four days, with a master class on Fridays. One day a week pupils have access to clubs, freeing up time for staff CPD.

New staff find it rewarding to use their key skills in other areas, whilst pupils feel inspired by staff that understand them.

View the video at: http://www.teachers.tv/video/22948

Worksheets and useful documents?

I am beginning to upload worksheets and documents I have produced for Geography and History teaching, training and administration. I don’t pretend that they are fantastic, but thought that they might be useful for others to use during moments of desperation!

Hopefully as time passes, I will be able to add to them. Just click on the link below to view my account:

Documents